Dress from The Fitzroy. Hat by Coup de Tête. Photography by Alvaro Goveia. Styling by Tara Williams.Hair & makeup by Sheri Stroh for Charlotte Tilbury/Kevin Murphy/Plutino Group. Model, Brianah, Spot 6.
Looking for that magical “I said yes to the dress” moment, but concerned with sustainability and budget? Renting a dress may just be your new fairy godmother. You can rent a fancy or fun dress for your bridal shower, bachelorette, wedding day, honeymoon and beyond. Want to make your wedding festivities more affordable for your besties? Renting bridesmaid dresses is also an option!
To give us the inside scoop on dress rentals we spoke to Angela Pastor and Julie Kalinowski, the fierce female duo behind The Fitzroy, a Toronto-based rental boutique.
Why do you think so many more women are renting dresses for their wedding or big events in recent years?
“Women realizing the experience of wearing a magical dress for their big day is the most important part, not the ownership of that item. As a wedding dress is truly a one-time-wear item, many women are finding it hard to justify the price tag and may prefer to put that budget towards a different aspect of their big day, for example the venue or the photographer. By renting a dress, you can still have that magical moment and feel and look amazing on your wedding day without having to invest in the dress. You will have the pictures that last forever and that's what counts! It's a way to make your wedding or special event more sustainable and affordable without sacrificing any of the magic.”
What makes renting a dress such a great option?
“It’s a way to try something you may not necessarily have bought or considered. It frees up space in your closet for items that you will actually get multiple wears out of. It is a more sustainable and economical option which still allows you to wear designer without the price tag. Most importantly it allows you to be less wasteful in that you will no longer need to purchase a one-time-wear item only to have it sit in your closet for years afterwards. You get to enjoy the dress, then give it back and pick a different one for another occasion without shoppers guilt!”
How do you help brides find their perfect dress?
“It really is so much fun for us! First we ask some questions regarding the date, venue, style of the event and level of formality. Then we usually start by asking the client if they saw anything on our website they would like to try. That's always a good jumping-off point. Once we see which styles are working and which are not, we will make suggestions from our inventory that we know would work for the client, based on their needs and the specifics of the event. Once the client has chosen a few front-runners, we help them narrow it down and make a final selection, after having of course confirmed the dress is available for that date, and also not already booked for the same event in a different size—this is essential! When it comes down to a final decision, we always ask our client which dress she feels best in, and you can usually see it in her eyes when she comes out of the fitting room and her face lights up. That’s when we know we've done our job.”
Brittany Johnson is a Canadian content creator, actress, and writer. Vintage huntress and dog mom, when she is not working at a tech start-up, with a focus on lifting up the next generation of young women, she can be found in her bed with a facemask on, watching Nora Ephron movies on repeat.
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