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We Forget That Not All Teens Have The Means To Go To Prom, But Here’s How You Can Help While You Party

Inside, DJs spin classic funk, freestyle and West Coast hip-hop; out front, homegirls, donning large gold hoops, winged eyeliner and Nike Cortez sneakers take group shots in front of a lowrider — this is Scam & Jam, one of the illest throwback parties in Los Angeles.

Each month, its founders — owners of lifestyle brand Bella Doña Lala Romero and Natalia Durazo and head of weekly lowrider event Los Angeles Cruise Night James Solano — transport guests to the late 1990s and early 2000s.

At the time, the folk behind the event were just high school cats throwing parties in homes and warehouses.

While they create a cultural space for Latinx locals to reminisce about the good times, the creators also remember the hard moments, like not having the bread to go to prom.

Now, the founders are using the nostalgic turn-up to house a donation drive for prom dresses for low-income youth throughout the city.

Scam & Jam has teamed up with A Place Called Home, a South Central nonprofit that provides young people with educational programs, counseling and mentorship, to collect gowns for the organization’s Cinderella & Prince Charming Project, which provides teens with formal attire for prom, senior photos and graduation.

“Scam & Jam is supported by our community, and many of us can relate and empathize to the struggles of prom expenses and are now in a position to donate and help,” Romero told Fierce. “Making an easy central drop-off location just helps streamline the donation process since folks are coming out anyways.”

The next party is March 17, and the team will be collecting new and dry-cleaned, gently used formal dresses, shoes, jewelry, evening bags and shawls, with a preference for plus-size items.

They will continue to gather donations until early April, in time to get the formalwear to A Place Called Home for their two-day Cinderella & Prince Charming Project event. There, more than a thousand young people will pick up their free gowns and suits as well as receive some socializing pointers.

“I personally attend the event and help style the girls,” said Romero, who, along with her business partner Durazo, has helped with the drive for several years. “Without this program, many students would not be able to attend prom, so we are in a blessed position with our platforms to rally support.”

If you’re in LA, drop off your clean, gently used prom, homecoming or graduation dress to Scam & Jam at the Regent Theater on March 17 and then enjoy your fave old-school tunes in an unapologetically Latina girl-power party.

Read: Here’s Why People Are Getting Super Emotional Over This Father/Daughter Prom Tweet

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20 Awkward Prom Photos That Will Make You Relive Your Greatest Moments

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20 Awkward Prom Photos That Will Make You Relive Your Greatest Moments

Prom is a special time in everyone’s life, whether because you absolutely hated it or you absolutely loved it. Or, perhaps, you even fell somewhere in between… Or, better yet, you both hated it and loved it. I have many nice prom memories and, funnily enough, have even been able to strike the “prom pose” as an adult because those photo instincts never die.

No matter what kind of prom you had, though, it’s a pretty safe bet that you have at least one super awkward prom photo hiding in your albums. There are the photos where you question your date’s hair, where you’re looking off into different cameras, where you’re posing weirdly with your squad. But all of these photos are for the greater good, a.k.a. the joy of reliving those great moments at some point in the future and both laughing and crying over all the awkward prom photos you once took.

In memory of this, here are 20 awkward prom photos that you’re not soon to forget.

1. The #TBT photo where you’re not quite sure about your date’s hair.

leahflytrap/Instagram

You probably felt like a Disney princess in this dress, amirite? That’s the best part, of course. But as for your date’s quasi-Justin Bieber hair, you’re not so sure anymore… Whoops for bad high school judgment.

2. That awkward photo where you both dressed up… as prom’s worst nightmare.

thetankgyrl/Instagram

Jason and Carrie, a match made in heaven? Well, it’s a pretty cool costume for a couple who surely strikes fear into the hearts of all of their besties.

3. The one photo where you’re starting the dancing off early.

blackgirlslayprom/Instagram

Watch me whip, and watch me nae nae. And then watch these prom photos life on for a lifetime, long after you’ve forgotten what it is that you’re doing here.

4. The one where your date is awkwardly much taller than you, even when wearing heels.

margotxoxox/Instagram

Perhaps you should have opted for platform stilettos? You love who you love, but sometimes it’s funny looking back at these oh-so-awkward photos with immeasurable height differences.

5. The one where you and your bestie pose.

allo986/Instagram

Nothing wrong with posing for a photo with your bestie, even if you both look a bit frightened and out of place. After all, that’s what best friends are for, right?

6. The one where your date is definitely NOT ready for that photo.

maisonaurora/Instagram

He looks sweetly surprised by how cute you look (and you do!), but maybe he should be facing the camera instead? Yeah, this definitely makes things a bit awkward.

7. The obligatory kissing photo…

ps_burlesque/Instagram

Everyone absolutely LOVES love, but maybe you should leave those kissing pictures to yourselves. Of course, you can’t help but take this, so we don’t blame ya.

8. The one where you’re in an equal relationship.

mansionlvr/Instagram

Hey, if you have to pose awkwardly with your bum to your partner, then there’s no reason why he shouldn’t do the same. At least you both look mega hot, amirite?

9. The photo where you’re single and ready to mingle.

benandmarissado/Instagram

Absolutely nothing wrong with being single when you head to prom, and especially if your memories include taking awkward solo photos amongst super fancy backdrops. Thanks, mom.

10. The one where there’s balloons and awkward smiles.

brookiebee4/Instagram

Let’s be honest: You have NO idea where those balloons originally came from or why they’re there, but it’s still a fun photo to look at. If only you and your date could have both managed to look at the camera…

11. The one where your parents went ALL extra.

dollupbree/Instagram

Thanks, mami and papi, for this wonderful car that I can ride around in… But, um, just a bit much? Of course, with a ride this sweet, who even needs a date?!

12. The one where you can’t help but dress up in gold queenly robes.

howrichisyourmelanin/Instagram

You are a REINA and you know it. Maybe you won’t make it to Prom Queen this year, but you can certainly go dressed up as the princess-to-be from the magical land of Zamunda, can’t you?

13. The one where your prom date looks like he was in a boy band.

nrdnick/Instagram

We all have memories of this from the 90s, so don’t be surprised if all of our prom pictures feature this in one from or another. Frosted tips on the fellas? Okay, then.

14. The one where your mami made a badass backdrop.

tristantaormino/Instagram

I mean, if you’re GOING to take photos in front of a backdrop before prom, then it sure as heck better be something gorgeous and shimmering and oh-so-pretty. Thanks, y’all.

15. The one where you and your date match.

kyrieeleisoncouture/Instagram

Sometimes, you just have to match with your date. Wearing black-on-black can be a pretty awesome look for both you and your date. And they’re looking hot, no?

16. The one where your guy friends just… Well, here you go.

lwimaging/Instagram

The fellas gotta show off somehow, and here they are in the classic “prom pose”… All 10 of them! This is so many extra points that I’m not even sure what to do with myself.

17. The one where your squad all needs to pose.

starrdeyes/Instagram

Maybe not everyone is feeling this photo, but the squad goes nowhere on their own. Can we raise a hand for all of the fabulous single ladies featured in this photo?

Also shout out to the Charlie Angels pose we thought was so clever.

18. The one where your date is putting on your corsage… Because, of course.

jengusey/Instagram

These silly kids and their corsages! You can’t go to prom without one of these, now and forever. You simply must take one of these photos, even if you’re not quite such a big fan of them.

19. The one where you look so fly that you spend more time hyping yourself than your date.

blackgirlslayprom/Instagram

If you’re looking OH SO GOOD, then you have to take photos. But sometimes you might get caught up in taking photos and photos and more photos, until your date just looks plain old bored in the background.

20. The one where you’re just happy you made it this far, tbh.

magnetic.nikki/Instagram

Hooray, you made it to prom! Maybe you didn’t think you would get this far in your high school career, but now it’s here and almost over. Perhaps there’s even a tear to be shed on the horizon?


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The 20 Most Instagrammable Wall Murals To Get Your Selfie Fix On During Your Next Visit To Los Angeles

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The 20 Most Instagrammable Wall Murals To Get Your Selfie Fix On During Your Next Visit To Los Angeles

When you visit Los Angeles, you are probably thinking of many things: The great restaurants, the beach, Hollywood. But there’s so much more to see in L.A. than celebrities and palm trees. In fact, one of the greatest things about the City of Angels is the absolutely gorgeous street art. There’s the “Made in L.A.” wall, the “Hello” wall, and the wall that looks like a Mona Lisa recreated as a Mexican revolutionary.

In honor of all of the murals, we’ve gathered a list of the 20 most Instagrammable murals to visit in Los Angeles, but the list doesn’t stop there. With so much street art on what seems like almost every corner, you will likely need a full day to explore what L.A. has to offer. You can even spend time exploring JUST the art of certain people, like Levi Poncé who created three of the works of art on this list. All in all, you should bookmark this list for the weekend, then grab your phone, and dress in your most Insta-worthy outfit, and head out there. 

1. The “Made in L.A.” Wall

When this art wall first premiered in 2013, it instantly drew Insta-photographers because it’s pretty effing cool. You can find this at the Cisco Home in Beverly Grove and take your own locally-inspired photograph.

2. The “We Are Not a Minority” Wall

This powerful message is directed at all of the Latinos out there. Located in the Estrada Courts, you can check it out and feel proud of your heritage here. Definitely a place that is worthy of an Instagram post… or, like, seven.

3. The Food Meets Art Wall

Located on the side of one of the most popular and iconic Mexican restaurants in L.A., owned by a family no less, the “food meets art” mural on the side of La Guelaguetza restaurant is a wonder. This gorgeous mural is definitely one to see, and one that you’ll want to take multiple photos at.

4. The “California Dreaming” Wall

Located at 3485 La Cienega Blvd, this blue-and-pink wall is 78 food wide and on the side of Chinese Laundry. The “California Dreaming” words printed in white make for some really awesome LA-based art and you might even fall in love with the typography made by artist Ricardo Gonzalez.

5. The Love Wall

If you want to pose in front of the hashtag #lovewall, then head on over to Bardonna in Los Angeles and post in front of this white wall that features some gorgeous multicolor hearts made by James Goldcrown. The same artist also created a wall just like this, but with a black background, on Abbot Kinney in Venice. 

6. The “Bloom” Wall

This wall is a fairly new addition to the Downton Los Angeles scene, created by Oakland-based artist HUEMAN. It’s a pretty iconic spot to take a photo and became one fairly quickly, to be honest. Oh, and it’s located at 298 Rose St… obviously.

7. The Wall of Eyes

Located in L.A.’s famed Art District, and on the side of EightTwo (an arcade), is this gorgeous blue-green wall of eyes. It’s pretty spacey-looking, and could make some some hypnotic and awesome Insta photos. Make sure you visit in the morning, though, because evenings mean busy times for this retro bar.

8. The Angel Wings Wall

This angel wings mural is located at St. Regis Wine & Liquor, but there are three others all around Los Angeles. However, this is actually the worldwide work of Colette Miller, who has designed angel wings that are painted everywhere from Kenya to Melbourne. And, of course, all over L.A. too. 

9. The Girl with the Hoop Earring Wall

This art wall, which is a reinterpretation of the famous Vermeer masterpiece, “Girl with a Pearl Earring,” is located in East San Fernando Valley. This area has numerous murals depicting the life of the people that live here, and many of them are made by artist Levi Pónce. 

10. The Geometric Wall

The next time you head to Venice, you absolutely have to check out this gorgeous geometric pastel wall at 12120 Venice Blvd, which is along the wall of the National Council of Jewish Women’s thrift store. It’s a totally Insta-worthy place to take a photo.

11. The Multicolor Brick Wall

Located at 302 Pico Blvd, this brick wall is an absolutely delectable way to take a photo in Los Angeles. The design is fun and playful and mixes different colors of turquoise and yellow in a perfect little reminder of sunshine and beaches.

12. The Abstract Wall

San Francisco-based artist Chris Lux created this gorgeous mural in 2014 that is just steps away from the last mural on this list (check it out!). It’s a DTLA must-stop and an imaginative and colorful visual feast that’s perfect for ALL of the selfies.

13. The Great Wall of Los Angeles

If you want to take an absolutely EPIC photo, head to The Great Wall of Los Angeles. This half-mile long mural tells the story of California from prehistory through the 1950s and is a complete feast for the eyes. Really, you could spend an entire day looking at this beauty. 

14. The Polka Dot Wall

Located at 608 Mateo Street, this beautiful work of art is a super cute demonstration of geometric design coupled with lots of color. The polka dots feature all kinds of different colors but somehow perfectly go together, which is great news since your #selfie face will go perfectly here too.

15. The RETNA Wall

Located on one of the walls of the parking garage of the West Hollywood Library, this blue masterpiece is by RETNA. It features a unique script that has been seen in other L.A. locations as well as around the world. 

16. The Pacoima Art Revolution Wall

Also known as the “Ramola Lisa,” this is another work of art by Levi Poncé. He’s a phenomenal artist with many murals throughout the L.A., but none as famous as this reimagining of the Mona Lisa as a Mexican revoluationary. So cool, amirite?

17. The Rainbows Wall

If you’ve heard of the Turquoise Wall, then you MUST come to the Rainbows Wall that is directly across from it. This one features a rainbow for the adults and another for the kids, along with a pretty cool peace design that’s perfect for photos too. 

18. The “Hello” Wall

Hello, Los Angeles! This wall is right by the famed pink wall but located at Carrera Cafe. You’ll want to head here the minute you get to L.A. if you’re visiting because it’s a pretty fun place to snap a photo and say a big HELLO to the City of Angels.

19. The Lotteria/AT&T Wall

Just to show you one more piece by Levi Poncé (though, trust me, there’s plenty more to fawn over on his Instagram account), this one is a work of marketing genius. He’s a master of putting Latino influence into his murals, like this one that he designed for AT&T. I mean… Could this get any cooler?

20. The “You are a goddess living in the city of angels” Wall

Another gorgeous piece of art at The Bloc in downtown Los Angeles, this is a collaboration by the famous street artist WRDSMTH and Colette Miller. There are tons of murals at The Bloc, but this is the one that I see in my dreams. Be a goddess, chica, and go take your own photo here.


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