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When Darcy Ryan got affianced to her longtime boyfriend, Adam, the 30-year-old Richmond, Virginia, citizen began envisioning her absolute bells day, with white plates, appealing flowers and amazing food.
“Like all brides, I accept a Pinterest problem,” says Ryan, who will tie the bond abutting June. “I am a huge foodie and into wine, so I appetite anybody to eat, alcohol and be merry. But I don’t appetite to say, ‘Oh, we can alone allow to accept 100 people.’ I appetite to be able to allure anybody we want.”
What’s one way Ryan is managing her account to accomplish allowance for anybody at the table? She is one of a growing cardinal of brides authoritative the “something borrowed” her bells gown.
The wedding-dress rental business is booming: Hire the Runway opened a Las Vegas boutique committed to bridal-gown rentals in December, and One Night Affair in Los Angeles rents some 1,500 dresses by arrangement only. And now there’s the DC-based Borrowing Magnolia, a website launched a few weeks ago that offers accessible admission to gowns from high-end designers such as Vera Wang, Monique Lhuillier and Jenny Packham.
“We’re seeing added of it,” says Meg Keene, columnist of “A Practical Wedding” and the editor-in-chief of a blog of the aforementioned name. “It aloof makes abundant added faculty to me to pay $400 and get a dress that’s different and a absolute knockout than absorb the aforementioned bulk and get not-even-the-best that David’s Conjugal has to offer.”
It makes faculty to Ryan, too. “My fiancé is activity to hire his tuxedo, so why shouldn’t I do the aforementioned thing?” says the bride-to-be, who is eyeing a $1,250 strapless Maggie Sottero cardinal for the big day that rents for $450 from Borrowing Magnolia.
A few canicule afterwards the ceremony, she’ll pop the dress — and any homesickness — into a amalgamation and mail it aback to the association at Borrowing Magnolia, area the dress will be anesthetized on to addition bride.
Keene addendum that some women were renting their bells dresses alike afore these specialized businesses came into existence.
“Until recently, Hire the Runway didn’t action bells dresses, per se, but they offered a lot of absolutely high-end dresses that you could use for bells dresses,” she says. “They were absolutely the aboriginal abode alms [dresses that were] nice and different abundant that there was a point in renting them. There absolutely is no point in renting a bells dress if it’s activity to be super-generic-looking, because you can buy that dress for absolutely bargain anyway.”
Borrowing Magnolia co-founders Ashley Steele, Steele’s sister Cali Brutz and acquaintance Stephanie Olvey had formed in the bells industry for abutting to a decade, and noticed that priorities accept confused back it comes to attached the knot.
“It is no best an antique industry,” says Steele. “You acclimated to get one photo that you put in a gold frame, you’d dry your flowers or you’d accept a bells dress with hopes that your academic granddaughter would after abrasion it. Now it’s added about the experience, and brides cogent their appearance and authoritative abiding their accord is showcased. And with Pinterest, accomplishing a bells on a account is chichi now.”
At Borrowing Magnolia, brides can adjustment three dresses to try on for a $99 fee. If the helpmate decides to hire or buy one of the dresses, the $99 goes against the cost. For rentals, which ambit from $400 to $1,920, the dress is beatific to the helpmate 10 canicule afore the bells and charge be alternate aural four canicule of the event. Alterations are accustomed on a case-by-case base and charge to be reversible.
“It’s brilliant, and I anticipate the abstraction is activity to draft up,” says Kristen Juhan, a newlywed who busy a $7,000 strapless applique clothes with a 4-foot alternation for her conjugal aftermost July for aloof beneath $1,000 from One Night Affair.
The 29-year-old law apprentice affiliated her bedmate aftermost year at his uncle’s Beverly Hills home, a area not adequate with her budget.
“My bedmate is in medical school. I am in law school, so money was tight, but we capital nice things. We didn’t accept the account to board the Beverly Hills wedding,” says Juhan.
“Being able to hire a dress was a absolutely abundant way to assignment with the account we had. It was important for me to accept a nice dress, but not important for me to authority on to it.”
Long Beach, California, helpmate Calli Verducci additionally went to One Night Affair and (temporarily) took home an $8,000 feather-and-tulle clothes for $1,200.
“I had never anticipation about renting a dress until my bells coordinator appropriate it. I was acutely alive with a account and knew I was never activity to abrasion it again.” Verducci, who got affiliated in March, says she wasn’t afraid about not accepting a white clothes to canyon on to a approaching daughter.
“I accept a lot of ancestors things I could canyon down. Nowadays, bodies aren’t activity the acceptable route. I was aloof cerebration that the money could accept been acclimated about else. And I don’t apperceive how they did it, but it fit me perfectly.”
But, admitting alive priorities, abounding brides still barb at the anticipation of renting a dress on their big day.
Upper East Sider Elissa Emden, who affiliated her husband, David, in a June 2011 “dream wedding” at the Plaza Hotel, has her clothes preserved at her parents’ home.
“The dress was one of the top priorities to me,” says Emden, who wore a corseted clothes with tiers of annual appliques by artist Monique Lhuillier. Emden beneath to say how abundant she’d spent on the dress, but Lhuillier’s conjugal gowns can amount advancement of $10,000.
For her, it was money able-bodied spent. She aloof had a babyish and affairs on affairs the dress out of the closet back she loses the babyish weight.
“Next year, I am activity to try it on again,” Emden says. “And I am abiding I will get goose bumps again.”
Additional advertisement by Hailey Eber and Kate Storey
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