Sunday, May 7, 2017

My Bridesmaids Rented Their Dresses

Call me a modern bride, call me an idiot- but I chose to have my bridesmaids rent from my beloved Rent The Runway that I have been using since 2009. Here are some Pros and Cons I had from the experience.

·      Very Broad Selection With Reviews
o   Just like all online shopping, there’s nothing quite like having a large selection right at your fingertips. With a couple of clicks, you can get dresses in the silhouette, color, and lengths that you’re interested in. I wanted my girls to wear something black & gold with a fitted body and boom at least 100 dresses popped up and I narrowed it down to my top 3. Then once I had my favorites lined up, I dug into the reviews. I ended up picking a dress that had positive reviews from all different body types and lengths that made the reviewers feel confident, beautiful, and comfortable. It was important to me that the dress also came in petite, regular, and tall since we weren’t going to be able to make alterations. To be on the safe side I asked all my bridesmaids to bring flats and heels just in case they needed to play with the height.

·      Saves Your Bridesmaids Money
o   The majority of my bridesmaids were in the early twenties. A time in life that’s known for Girls marathons, Wine Wednesdays, and late nights with your friends- not so much about extra moohlah laying around. Which is why I was very cognizant to try and keep their expenses as low as possible, but still wanted them to look and feel glamorous. What’s better than renting an $800 dress for eighty bucks? They can get the high-quality with a low dollar. To also help them save I asked them to wear any type of black shoes. They should be tall or flat but just black. A pretty easy color that many of us already have in our closet and allowed the girls to not only save money but also wear something they felt comfortable walking in. I then splurged on their hair and makeup myself as a thank you for putting up with me throughout the wedding planning process.

·      They Get to Wear an Expensive Dress
o   There really is nothing like an expensive dress for the body. It was a fabulous material that worked with any body type, not against it. My bridesmaids described it as almost a very luxe pantsuit fabric and I think each girl felt confident in how they looked. I might be biased by saying this but all of my friends looked gorgeous! I love Rent the Runway because it gives you the opportunity to wear a well-made $1000 dress for just 80 bucks and the quality really shows.

·      They Won’t Have All Sizes Readily Available
o   This is one that you’re not going to have ANY problem with if you have 6 or less bridesmaids, but with me having 12 girls I was REALLY pushing it. You can rent dresses up to 3 months before an event date and you better believe we all had that marked down on our calendar. On the day of, all my girls snatched up their dress sizes (plus rent the runway give you 1 back up size for free) and even being on top of the ball at least 3 girls were unable to get the size they wanted and 1 girl was unable to get any at all. So what I did to organize is I asked each girl what two sizes rent the runway gave them and then I made a spread sheet. With the extra backup sizes we ended up being able to have all the girls in a dress of their size. For us, it literally worked out perfectly but it really could have been a disaster beyond our control.

·      Last Minute Delays
o   About two days before the wedding my friend Taylor called me very upset saying how Rent the Runway contacted her to let her know her size was no longer available due to a previous user damaging it. Taylor was rightfully super upset but I let her know any black dress would make due if it came down it. After getting on the phone with their management, Rent the Runway was only able to give her some type of refund as well as send her a similar black dress. In the end, someone else’s back up size fit Taylor so she was able to fit in with the rest of the girls. Still, this was the unnecessary stress that may come if you rent dresses and it definitely wasn’t fun for Taylor to deal with.

·      Tears & Wear
o   One of my bridesmaids made sure and order her dress a couple of days in advance to make sure it fit her perfectly. Upon arrival it had a huge rip in the lace in the back and she had to wear her backup dress. I think there was also one other bridesmaids that had a small hole in the back of their dress too but not quite as bad as the full on rip of that first dress. This is something else that you might have to come to terms with if you’re choosing to rent dresses for your bridesmaids- they have been previously worn and therefore may show signs of wear! I personally have never had an issue with Rent the Runway dresses but when you’re ordering over 12 it makes sense that at least one is going to have an issue. Just be mentally prepared and have safety pins on deck just in case.

In the end I would definitely rent my bridesmaids dresses again. Their confidence, look, and price far outweighed some of the inconveniences that come with renting dresses. Now, Rent the Runway also has a program set up to help a bridesmaid party organize their dresses and I would have definitely taken advantage of that. I would also recommend having each bridesmaid call a week in advance of the wedding to assert with Rent the Runway that this dress is for a wedding and therefore can’t be late- they will then flag the dress. Also, we had all of the dresses sent to the place where we got ready so girls didn’t have to worry about being home when their dress arrived, it was already up hanging for them on the day of!

Ultimately, men rent their suits so why can’t women rent their dresses?



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