BALTIMORE – Michelle McGinn took three weeks to complete her gold-and-fire-red dress — aptly named “The Phoenix.”

Briana Angel found her dress at a bridal shop only to dismantle it and piece it back together to reflect her personal flair.

Sarah Lewis designed her prom dress and recruited the owner of a local fashion house to produce the elaborate frock.

Years ago, many teens would have scoffed at the thought of wearing a homemade dress instead of flaunting a stylish store-bought number. This year, a number of prom-goers will don their own creations as they show off their knack for needle and thread. Fashion design shows like “Project Runway” and a do-it-yourself attitude have inspired high-schoolers to make their prom dresses this season.

They say being more hands-on allows them to incorporate their sense of style, control cost and — most importantly — stand out from the rest of their classmates.

“What they are doing is taking matters into their own hands,” said Zoey Washington, owner of Little Bird Style, a New York styling company geared toward teens. “Anything where girls are taking their own personal style, developing it, and taking challenges is a great thing. They are coming up with a fusion of styles that they see on the runway and the red carpet.”

Washington has noticed more teens taking a role in the production of their prom dress.

“It’s more popular than adults realize,” Washington said. “There’s a spectrum there. It’s not always that the girl is going to build her own dress from scratch. It can be anything from her changing the hem line and making the sleeves shorter, to going to Jo-Ann Fabric and doing it themselves. In some way, shape or form, she is going to alter the look.”

Gina Kelly, fashion director of the popular teen magazine Seventeen, agrees.

“More creative girls are making their own dresses — a la ‘Project Runway.’ They probably want to be designers and are proud they can do it themselves, so it’s kind of cool to wear your own design,” Kelly said.

McGinn, an 18-year-old senior at Marriotts Ridge High School in Howard County, Md., took two weeks to create her dress, which she wore to her senior prom on a recent weekend. McGinn teamed up with another classmate to make the dress that they also submitted for a class assignment. The gown features a golden satin top, laced-up ribbon corset in back and a cascading skirt made of tulle. She made the entire garment for $80.

“I get to say I made it,” said McGinn, who fell in love with sewing after taking a class as a child. “They (her classmates) can’t go out and make the same thing I did.”

Fabric stores have been quick to notice the budding trend.

“It has become such a big part of our business that we now buy fabric just for prom season. Years ago we did very little business during prom season,” said Michael Bearman, owner of A Fabric Place, a fine-fabric store in Baltimore. “It started a couple years back and has been getting bigger every year.”