Not only could I not go naked, but I needed to be respectful of the slightly more Jewish Orthodox observances of the family and guests that would be in attendance.
“We believe that looking and feeling beautiful can transform the ordinary into the extraordinary. Enjoy your Cinderella moment.” – Jenn & Jenny, Co-Founders of Rent the Runway.
Late that Sunday night I was closing my eyes as I was drifting asleep thinking about the places I could go in New York City to search for a dress at a reasonable price. I knew I didn’t want to spend more than $200.00 and I had to find it fast. I remembered a website called “Rent the Runway” a friend had once used. I follow them on Instagram, ‘liking’ and adoring their fashionable and sparkling dresses and gowns. I also remembered I had seen their announcement that they opened a show room inside Henri Bendel. I booked an appointment immediately online with a stylist for $25.00 which goes towards my eventual rental. I loved this as it reminded me of how Ketubah.com offers samples for $25.00 which also goes towards your eventual purchase of a Ketubah!
The next morning I took my black, long sleeve, high round neckline, body suit in hand. I would recommend finding one in colors you wear often and that are comfortable to you. Some people like lower or higher necklines, depending on the season and religious observance one might just want a short sleeve, 3/4 sleeve, or long sleeve. Personally, it is February in Toronto so black and long was good for me!
The words I wanted to fulfill were “classic” “chic” “elegant” and this dress was all those things.
We pulled multiple dresses that I could see working with a sleeve. In third place was a trumpet, color blocked, silk faille Carolina Herrara’s “Just Imagine Gown”. While gorgeous and flattering it was not as comfortable as others. Turns out it was out of my budget. NEXT!
The runner up was Carmen Marc Valvo’s “Lifetime Love Gown” one shouldered dress. I tried on the red for size but knew the black would be more appropriate. In many Orthodox and ultra-Orthodox communities the color red is viewed as promiscuous and inappropriate. While obviously one shoulder detail is better without a body suit (or “shell” as many call them) it actually looked pretty good together.
The final winner was a Badgley Mischka’s “Rosalind Peplum Gown”. This dress was perfection. The words I wanted to fulfill were “classic” “chic” “elegant” and this dress was all those things. The peplum cut is on trend yet simple. Bonus: no spans necessary! The bow gave it a feminine touch. My black shell happened to match perfectly. The only reason this won out over the Valvo gown was that the stylist and I discussed and decided that the peplum was more appropriate for the event and crowd.
There are few occasions where one can wear a full length gown, and this was one of them as a cousin. Turns out that is exactly the idea Rent the Runway is going with. On the back of a Thank You card that came with the dress it says, “We believe that looking and feeling beautiful can transform the ordinary into the extraordinary. Enjoy your Cinderella moment.” – Jenn & Jenny, Co-Founders. And that is exactly how this experience made me feel.
Meshi Shoshana, 21, who is participating in GFW for her fourth year in a row she is currently the Executive Chair of Gainesville Fashion Week, and a campus representative for Rent the Runway, says, “I always rent because I usually wear dresses once or twice and then it just sits in my closet so I love To rent because I don’t spend so Much and it doesn’t take up room in my closet. I have rented for Gainesville Fashion Week, weddings, and even parties. Everytime I rent I get so many compliments.”
Other little things to note: