Project Runway is one of my favorite shows to enjoy after late nights at the office. I love that it gives talented designers a chance to showcase their skills in front millions of TV viewers. Our very own Christian Siriano first gained notoriety when he won Season 4 of Project Runway, later going on to create full collections that are showcased at Bryant Park each season.
Last week’s Project Runway, episode 10 was entitled “Hey, That’s my Fabric”. The guest designer was Vivienne Tam, a fabulous fashion force credited for her understanding of the connection between technology and fashion. The challenge: Designing and creating your own textiles using patterns and fabrics. I loved this challenge because it revolved around prints, and the graphic prints featured in this week’s episode are right on trend for spring 2010.
In the end the judges all agreed that Emilio Sosa was the clear winner with his graffiti printed dress and black jacket ensemble. "I have to say, I'm in love with the whole outfit," Heidi gushed. Michael Kors agreed, "You nailed it." Emilio's look was my favorite as well, followed closely by Maya's super chic bi-color portrait collar dress.
I thought it’d be fun to share a selection of RTR styles that have the same feel as those featured on the show. Let me know your favorite in the comments! -- Derek
What are you wearing this week? We want to know if you’re dressing up or dressing down. These are our picks. Tell us yours in the comments and we’ll give one of you a $100 gift card. Happy Monday! -- Lara
Wednesday: Lela Rose’s Scoopneck Power Sheath
Thursday: Robert Rodriguez’s Bright Bodice Gown
Saturday: Yigal Azrouel’s Notice Me Mini
Springtime’s here and you know what that means; time to schedule your pedicure so you can show off your polished toes with all the fabulous sandal styles out there! Check out OPI’s latest colors like my faves Red My Fortune Cookie and Suzi Says Feng Shui!
If you’re looking for some cute spring sandals to showcase your color of choice, my little secret is DSW.com for great designer named shoes without the hefty price tag. Check out this must-have cut out wedge available in black, taupe, and grey for a peek of where my toes will be getting their kick this spring! P.S. This sandal is the perfect match for the Graphic Shoulder Dress from Robert Rodriguez! -- Blaire
First, we were four and we were homeless. Last June, when Jenny and I hired our first teammates - Derek and Lara - for Rent the Runway we were working out of Cosi sandwich shops and on a classy day, an occasional West Village coffee shop. Then we subleased space from an architecture firm that we found by getting lost on our way back to the elevator after a Brian Reyes appointment. For 6 long months we crammed more and more team members and interns into a space meant for 4. We got to know our co-workers (a little too well!) and got to know that architects don't talk to each other much during the day - thus making for a pretty awkward neighborly relationship given all the laughter and pep happening over on the RTR side. Finally on January 15th, we moved into our own space - and painted one of the walls hot pink, in honor of the type of company I've always dreamed of working for. True story: I actually dreamed of working in an office with comfortable couches and a hot pink wall about a year ago and now unbelievably it's a reality! And finally today, we got the true marker of real company status - a door sign. Until now, we've had a crumbled piece of paper posing for a company i.d. But today, it's all stainless steel official - and here's the team (part of it!) in front of the sign. A very, very proud day for me! -- Jenn
While most of our Rent the Runway girls are busy juggling a social calendar that includes weddings, dates, black tie benefits, baby showers, and more, I know there are some of you out there for whom all that still seems a million miles away. You're thinking spring break, senior spring, and most importantly, PROM!
It's been a while since my last Prom, but I still remember how important it is to find the perfect dress. My best friend and I spent countless weekends driving all over the state Massachusetts in my Volvo station wagon on a mission to locate the most important fashion statements of our 18 year old lives. RTR is a high school fashion dream come true - designer dresses within reach and you don't even have to blow five months of gas money (as one of our members recently pointed out). Vicki and I would have absolutely died to arrive at Prom in a dress by our favorite Project Runway designer or in one that had walked down the red carpet!
The RTR Stylists have recently been swamped with girls seeking advice for Prom. Since we haven't been to prom in quite some time, I thought we should bring in someone who has. Enter Zoe; a Junior from CA and self-proclaimed fashion lover. Zoe rented an amazing Alice + Olivia Gold One Shoulder Sequin Dress for her winter formal and she has since been logging onto RTR daily to find the perfect prom dress. Below are Zoe's top picks for prom- what are yours? -- Brooke
My personal favorite, it combines a classic gown style with beautiful twists and folds of silk chiffon and a dramatic "tail." The details are impeccable and the color is bold but just right for prom.
This dress was designed for dancing! Not for wallflowers, its sequins and shine will call attention to you with every shimmy and shake.
Forget the double-take. This fun yet sophisticated dress will make you the recipient of quadruple-takes! Not your typical prom dress, this oceanic stunner has asymmetrical ruffles trimmed with eye-grabbing silver sequins.
I can't take my eyes off this dress, and no one will be able to take their eyes off of you, either. What's not to like- it shimmers, it's pink, and it's the grown-up Disney princess's dream!
Introducing Stylist Tips from RTR! Starting today, we’re offering something extra on our blog- every day fashion tips from our talented team of stylists here at Rent the Runway. Check out RTR Insider regularly to get the scoop on the hottest trends, our shopping secrets, and personal style tips!
Our first one comes from me – here’s my spin on how to make one of our dresses your own. Tell us how you’d wear it in the comments. I’ll pick my fave and send one lucky commenter a $25 gift certificate. Bring out the inner fashionista by mixing floral prints with stripes. Rent our Twelfth Street by Cynthia Vincent Spring Fling Floral Dress and add this awesome TopShop striped blazer. Finish the look off with these to die for modern heels from Urban Outfitters for the ultimate look this Spring! -- Blaire
Prabal Gurung has been nominated by the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) for the Swarovski Award for Womenswear. We are so proud of him and have loved his designs ever since his first Fall 2009 collection. Check out all the nominees here.
Fantastic color, enticing labels, an array of fabrics… this magical experience is what we have tried to recreate at Rent the Runway, enabling each woman to access all of these fantastic styles. When the dresses aren’t in the hands of a lucky fashionista they are hanging in our own luxury closet which is conveniently located inside of a dry cleaner in NYC! Slate NYC (www.slatenyc.com) is our eco-friendly dry cleaning partner where we warehouse all of our dresses. Working out of a dry cleaner enables us to get our dresses out to customers looking like new every time as quickly as possible.
While the world of fashion may appear ultra glamorous, there are definitely moments packing boxes, checking in new inventory, and organizing our dress racks that bring me back to reality in a big time way. Luckily I have come up with 5 easy tricks to surviving life at the dry cleaners which conveniently also serve as apt life lessons:
- Leave your Louboutins at home! (Actually this only applies at the dry cleaners)
- Bring the UPS man cookies. Bribery is always a good tactic.
- Packing tape serves as great nail polish remover.
- Dress with less (clothing that is) – it is always 20 degrees hotter inside the dry cleaners but what a great excuse to show some skin.
- Handling dresses definitely counts as exercise. So yes, shopping is a legitimate excuse to skip the gym.
After Paris, I traveled to Milan (which despite it’s reputation for being a concrete jungle) I actually love. Perhaps I’m biased by the pasta, but Milan has such a warmth and passion seeping from its narrow streets.
I had the incredible opportunity to meet with Vittorio Missoni – one of the patriarchs of the Missoni clan - at the brand’s incredible showroom in Milan. The showroom was once an umbrella factory, which was converted to have almost a greenhouse-like effect – bright, airy and super chic. As you can probably guess, Missoni is indeed coming to Rent the Runway in late summer. There was just so much to choose from – prints and dresses galore.
Comment back and tell us which styles you love and we’ll be sure to order them for you.
P.S. If you haven’t seen it yet, check out Missoni’s latest ad campaign – it’s AMAZING and all about family. Talk about communicating the essence of the brand and making you feel that Italian warmth. --Jenn
An hour lost in sleep is an hour gained in style. Spring is near and once the rain clears on the East Coast, I’m ready to shed my winter layers. As party season approaches, here are my picks for Spring:
Christian Cota’s Daring Deep V Dress: I have been dying to wear this since Derek picked it out last fall. This perfect printed dress is definitely accompanying me to one of several upcoming events: the only question is whether it’s a party in April or a rehearsal dinner in June. Most likely both.
Doo.ri’s Glass Print Dress: Another fabulous print that’s been calling my name. This dress is perfect for my best friend’s bridal shower in May.
Mark & James’ Shimmy It Mini: Speaking of weddings, I have three bachelorette parties in May. While I specialize in LBDs, something different would be nice and this sparkly number should do the trick.
What will you be wearing this Spring? --Lara
The shows may be over, but Rent the Runway continues to make waves in Paris. In addition to Nina Ricci and Preen, Jenn just informed me that we’ve also signed Carlos Miele! Miele’s sexy styles will be sure to add some fire to Rent the Runway this fall!
Check out these pics from the showroom:
If you could wish for one change in the world what would it be?
“That everybody could afford my shoes.”-Christian Louboutin
Since Saturday, Derek and I have been immersed in all that is Paris Fashion Week – placing orders with new designers for Rent the Runway, socializing with our U.S. designer friends, trekking from one appointment to the next in the freezing cold (not fun!) all while sporting our 4 inch Louboutins – the most useful gift a newly minted girl in this business can receive! A few observations from the epicenter of the fashion world:
1) Nina Ricci is one of the most beautiful brands in the world. You heard it here first, but Nina Ricci is coming to Rent the Runway and let me tell you, these dresses are to die! Nina was our first appointment of the week and I was taken aback by the buzz in the showroom – over 8 buying appointments were going on simultaneously alongside a visit from Vogue. Though instead of being overwhelming, it was quite efficient – models grazed the floor in fall collection garb, enabling us to see and get inspiration from looks we may not have gravitated to before. Look out for a stunning black and grey rosette mini skirt we selected, perfect for a first impression.
2) Every building is a wonderland. Almost every appointment would begin with a palatial old door off a windy alley – once opened, even the most unassuming building might open to a gorgeous inner courtyard, a cobblestone entryway or another feature that makes my small NYC 1-bedroom feel entirely blasé. Here’s Derek and I in one of these inner courtyards – in this one Commes de Garcons was showcasing their collection.
3) Estefania Lacayo is the chicest woman on the planet. She does not like attention but it has to be said.
4) Colette is the place to see and be seen. For those of you who don’t know, Colette is a fabulous Parisian store where the industry comes to shop, socialize and “eat” lunch at the café downstairs. Though I think Derek and I are the only ones who were really eating (rather redefining how much bread (for me) and sweets (for Derek) two humans can consume in a day). To the women of Paris: espresso does not equal lunch.
5) Preen is the new Herve Leger. I’m not taking anything away from Herve Leger because I love it and it’s fabulous (and I especially love Kim Livek our sales manager there!) but I absolutely fell in love with Preen in Paris. I had been spotting it at Intermix in NY and loved the bold hues (no one does a better acid yellow) but to buy the collection in real life is incredible. Look out for bodycon dresses by Preen this fall on Rent the Runway!
After the Oscars, we know you’re all craving some star style. So who better than Rachel Zoe to select her favorite trends from the Oscars and bring them to life on Rent the Runway?
Rachel was responsible for dressing Cameron & Demi – definitely 2 of the best dressed on the red carpet. And now she’s helping us make celebrity style accessible - check out her selections below!
If you want to get all of Rachel’s amahzing finds, sign up for The Zoe Report, her daily newsletter, by clicking here.
Rent the Runway’s gearing up for the Oscars and in honor of tomorrow’s ceremony we’ve created our own awards. These are some of our faves but we hope you’ll tell us which ones you like in the comments!
Best Dress Best Dress Best Dress
for channeling to make your for rejoicing you're
Spring Break ex jealous not a bridesmaid
Best 3rd date Best Dress
Dress to get that
(wink wink!) promotion
We met Amanda when she came to interview Jenny Fleiss and I for NY1 before New York Fashion Week (watch it here http://www.ny1.com/5-manhattan-news-content/ny1_living/money_matters/113490/rent-a-runway-ensemble-at-bargain-prices/). Amanda was a fireball of energy about the upcoming fashion shows she'd be attending and about our company (and I have to admit that I LOVE people who love Rent the Runway!). She proceeded to buy a subscription package from us - so that she could dress up for every day of Fashion Week and on the last day, she called us and told us the exciting news. Amanda's boyfriend had proposed to her the night before and had surprised her with two Herve Legers from Rent the Runway. Talk about a guy with style - I feel a new engagement trend coming on! Here's Amanda very newscaster style on Rent the Runway -
"Rent-the-Runway has become the most important staple in my wardrobe. With the season pass, I was able to wear a new designer dress every day during fashion week WITHOUT having to dig into my savings. My now fiancée is hooked too- the night he proposed he surprised me with 2 dresses he ordered from RTR so I could wear my favorite design by Herve Leger (in a new color!!) on one of the most important nights of my life"
- Jenn Hyman
The best part of Rent the Runway is that every day is an adventure. Today is one of my favorites – it’s a photo shoot day.
On photoshoot days, we've got a whole team styling each look from head to toe, writing and editing copy, and we're jamming to a fantastic playlist compiled by one of our amazing stylists. The models are here, the makeup and hair are styled, and the photographer is on his game. Best of all, the accessories look fabulous! It’s our first time shooting the models with our gorgeous jewelry and we couldn’t be happier. Here’s a sneak peek of what’s in store – Anton Heunis, Lee Angel, Citrine by the Stones, and oh so many more...
Featured Dress: Catherine Malandrino Lucky Charm Dress
This daring emerald green stunner from Catherine Malandrino is featured on Alicia Keys on the cover of this month’s Gotham Magazine. Styled to perfection with bold gold jewels, you can reserve this style now for your next night on the town! -- Lara
Introducing: Dress Diaries (because every dress has a story).
Style Spotlight: Quia Querisma, Dallas tastemaker and Rent the Runway devotee. By day, Quia is a fashion writer for the Dallas Shopping Examiner and regular contributor to the Dallas Observer, but by night she’s a fierce fashionista on the Dallas fashion, arts and entertainment scene.
Daria: When did your love affair with fashion begin?
Quia: It’s funny because my mom has always been into fashion and would dress me in Liz Claiborne Kids and Jordache jeans. But I think I first really started paying attention to fashion in 8th grade. In fact, I spent all of my allowance on clothes. Bell Biv Devoe was big then and it was all about colorful, urban style. I remember I wore Reebok Classics and had two different colors and I’d wear one of each at the same time – one was mustard yellow and the other was purple!
D: Wow. That’s commitment. And how would you describe your style today?
Q: It’s chic but practical and always pulled together. Like yesterday, I went to meet a friend for lunch and the weather was terrible so I wore my purple pea coat, skinny jeans, tall boots and a newsboy cap.
D: Who are your favorite designers?
Q: Shoes: Giuseppe Zanotti. Clothing: Nicole Miller, Karen Millen, Max Azria
D: Which has been your favorite RTR rental so far?
Q: The Badgley Mischka Beaded Sweetheart Dress I wore to Kenny "The Jet" Smith's All Star Celebrity Bash during All Star weekend here in Dallas. It was stunning.
D: Anything else you want our members to know?
Q: For anyone who is worried about renting, customer service is always helpful and the process is much smoother than you’d think!
To chat with a stylist, click here.