When one brother found out his parents couldn’t afford to buy his sister a prom dress, he made it for her himself.

Siblings have all kinds of relationships. But the hope is that when it really matters, family will always be there for one another. That’s why this story, in which one brother in the Philippines proved he’s got his sister’s back, is so heartwarming.

Why One Boy Stepped in to Make a Prom Dress for His Sister

girls wearing formal gowns getting ready for prom
Photo by Todd Cravens on Unsplash

In 2020, Lu Asey learned her school was going ahead with its winter ball, and naturally, she was excited to go to her junior-senior prom. The only problem? It was ball gown attire. She was afraid her parents couldn’t afford that kind of a dress so she wasn’t sure she could go. But then her brother (who may very well also be her best friend) stepped in.

Maverick Francisco Oyao told his sister he would not only design her gown, but he would make it for her. So he set to work, researching gowns from some of his own favourite designers including famous fashion designer Michael Cinco.

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“I browsed YouTube and Google on different types of ball dresses, especially Michael Cinco’s Spring and Summer Collection, and started conceptualizing,” he said in a Facebook post.

After the sketch was complete, Oyao went out in search of materials. According to his story, he spent the equivalent of about $62 USD on fabrics at a textile store (some of the money was donated by people who were inspired by what he was doing for his sister). Time was tight though, and he only had days to complete the very ambitious project.

How Making a Prom Dress by Hand Changed One Family’s Life

Once Oyao had the materials, he set to work on bringing his creation to life. In the Facebook post, the unlikely designer shared the various stages, from the creation of the bodice (which he hand-painted) to the skirt with its criss-cross white satin ribbon. There were also plastic flowers, clear crystal beads, and sequins worked into the lavish dress.

By the time Oyao got to the sleeves, he fashioned the same ombré design from the bodice to pull the look together. The result is a truly beautiful piece of fashion that Asey definitely wouldn’t have found in any store. But it’s also much more meaningful than anything she could have ever found.

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This story is even more impressive when you consider Oyao isn’t a fashion designer: At the time he was studying arts and culture in university. All in all, he revealed it took him about a week and a half to finish the dress in time for prom, which also happened to fall on Valentine’s Day.

“I’ve done my part very well as your supportive kuya (big brother), and I won’t get tired of supporting you,” he wrote in his post. “That’s my promise.”

I hope I made you happy this Valentine’s Day.

Maverick Francisco Oyao

Oyao may not have set out to be a fashion designer, but after his story went viral many people contacted him for pieces. According to the student, he took some jobs designing and styling, as well as coordinating photo shoots. Through them, he’s helping to support his family while continuing his creative pursuits.   

How a Brother and Sister Proved the Importance of Cherishing a Family

brother and sister smiling
Photo by Kadyn Pierce on Unsplash

This story is an incredible one that showcases the love between siblings and what a brother would do to see his sister happy. But it also reminds us that quite often, no one understands and loves you unconditionally like your family.

That doesn’t have to be your blood family, mind you. There are many different kinds of families out there (including chosen families), and each one has a special and unique dynamic that makes them special. That’s why when we find ours it’s important to nurture relationships and show our loved ones how much they mean to us.

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Not all of us have the skills or are in the situation where you would need to craft a ball gown. But inviting a loved one over for a meal, calling to check in on them, picking up a special gift that reminds you of them, or just bringing someone a cup of coffee or tea when they’re having a hard day are all ways to show your family what they mean to you.

After all, why shouldn’t we practice kindness on those we love first and foremost?

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Cherish your family
Whether its the family you were born with or the family you chose, make sure to show them how much they mean to you.