Hard to believe Christmas is on Sunday! Mr. HGL got his holiday haircut, and he's going to hop around the Christmas tree, and I'm ready to hang out with family and friends. It looks like we're going to freeze this weekend and it's times like these that I wish I lived somewhere warm like the Carolinas or Florida.
So, this morning I got word that my trademark will be approved, BUT I have six months to create a statement of use and prove its value. Six months to create a business? Geez! Well, good thing I work best under pressure, and I've got some really smart friends who live for startups, so hopefully we can come up a new retail business model that involves rentals, resale and more! I'm still accepting suggestions and am easy to find on social media channels (if you don't want to comment). 🙂 Too bad Mr. HGL can't help.
WHAT I'M WEARING THIS WEEK: Rent the Runway
Welcome back to What I'm Wearing This Week — Rent the Runway where you can rent and wear designer items by names you know and love, and up-and-coming designers too!
For the newbies to WIWTW, every Friday I’ll take you on a trip through my life, where I’m going, what’s missing in my closet, my current obsessions, what I’m excited to try, and maybe even buy. Well, that's if the price is right!
For sizing reference, I am 5'11", weigh 140 pounds, and have a 33" inseam.
Rent the Runway is a clothing rental company, but it was the first clothing subscription platform that provided the everyday woman with access to authentic, luxury fashion. Since its launch in 2009, RTR has gone through many iterations, some of which were the result of the pandemic, and now it's also a sustainable resale platform where shoppers can rent, buy, or subscribe to secondhand clothing.
This is a review of the Most Loved Up to 8 Items Per Month plan.
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we review boxes.)
WHAT I RECEIVED
All four items by Ulla Johnson, Patou, Ulla Johnson, and Paco Rabanne arrived fresh from the dry cleaner (they're clean!), on the hanger, and sealed in plastic bags.
Ulla Johnson Amelia Blouse, Retail Value $395 RTR $395
About the designer: Born and raised in Manhattan, the daughter of archaeologists, Ulla Johnson honed her signature style between the streets of New York and the far-flung destinations of their family travels. Her eponymous line, founded in 1998 just after graduating from college, immediately caught the attention of the fashion press.
Growing from a handful of directional boutiques and with an early endorsement from Barneys New York, Ulla Johnson’s collection has gained a dedicated following and the support of retailers across the US, Europe, Australia, and Asia. She has never wavered in her steadfast attention to the details of construction that have become her hallmark, basing each of her collections on a foundation of natural fibers, beautiful finishing, and ease of fit and form. Ulla lives in Brooklyn with her husband and three children.
How I styled it: I threw on this top to meet my sister to watch the World Cup Final at Patsy's American and I wore it with the Alice + Olivia Frayed Bell Bottom jeans, Kat Maconie Ankle boots, a wool fedora, and a pair of Lele Sadoughi hoops.
Size and fit: I rented the 6 and if it were about an inch shorter in length, it wouldn't have worked on me. This crisp cotton blouse features a boatneck, long parachute sleeves with elasticized cuffs, a smocked bodice, concealed side-zip closure, and tiered ruffled hem.
Honest review: Lightweight, frilly and fashionable, this versatile blouse is a winner, but not for $395.
Patou Volume Dress, Retail Value $950, RTR $855
About the designer: So, I thought Patou was a new designer, and I was so wrong!
Patou is a fashion house created by Jean Patou in 1914. Patou is a century of couture, a revolution in women's fashion (sportswear, swimwear, sunscreen, and the monogram...), iconic ambassadors (Josephine Baker, Mistinguett, Suzanne Lenglen, Louise Brooks), as well as unforgettable perfumes (Joy, 1000), not to mention some of the most renowned designers who took over (Marc Bohan, Karl Lagerfeld, Christian Lacroix ...).
Patou is a renaissance, a new chapter of Patou-à-porter, women’s ready-to-wear with a few accessories here and there, under the artistic direction of Guillaume Henry.
How I styled it: Is it a dress or a tunic? When I put it on, I immediately thought, "I can't wear this, it's way too short!" But then I had a genius idea and I belted it super tightly with the Etsy Obi belt which stretched it out a bit and made it wearable to the new Pendry Hotel at the Wharf and to Enchant.
Well, the joke was on me because we were supposed to go to dinner at Rasika after Enchant, but suddenly there was some holiday party at the Waldorf Astoria for some high society people, and I stumbled in looking like Drunky Smurfette in the world's shortest dress. Needless to say, I didn't make it to dinner because I walked and ran 8 miles on Saturday and drank three large glasses of wine on a totally empty stomach, so once we left the party, I called my $70 Uber and went home to eat Chinese food and watch The White Lotus.
Anyway, I wore it with Sheertex tights (I definitely fell at some point because I now have a golf ball-sized bruise on my knee and they didn't tear), Kat Maconie Sock boots, and the Yves Salomon Shearling jacket.
Size and Fit: RTR sent me the French 40 which is a US 8 and had I sized down, it would've legit been a tunic or a child's dress. This brilliant cotton design features a boatneck, long puffed sleeves with ruffled cuffs, side zip closure, ribbed bodice, and flared hem.
Honest review: I love this dress so much. When we walked into the party at the Waldorf, so many women in their sequin holiday gowns ran over to compliment me on the design and color, and I felt like I fool because I was drunk and dressed totally inappropriately.
Ulla Johnson Isobel Dress, Retail Value $253, RTR $240
How I styled it: I haven't had a chance to wear it yet, but I think it'll be my Christmas dress. I'll wear it with sheer Wolford nylons, Carolina Herrera Point-Toed flats, Lele Sadoughi earrings, and the vintage mink jacket. Maybe I'll belt it too... we'll see. I can't decide if it looks better with or without.
Size and fit: I got the 6 and it's a perfect fit. This gingham-print dress is crafted in cotton and features a slight v-neck, puffed sleeves, a gathered, asymmetrical ruffled bodice, back-zip closure with extra-long pull, and a bias-cut skirt with a handkerchief hem that really needs a slip.
Condition: Like new. I might be the first person to wear it.
Honest review: It's a little lightweight for the freezing cold temps we're expecting this weekend, but it's pretty and festive.
Paco Rabanne Black Floral Midi Dress, Retail Value $1,220, RTR $1,159
About the designer: Francisco Rabaneda Cuervo, more commonly known as Paco Rabanne, is a Spanish fashion designer of Basque origin who became known as an enfant terrible of the 1960s French fashion world. Rabanne's father, a Republican Colonel, was executed by Francoist troops during the Spanish Civil War and his mother was the chief seamstress at Cristóbal Balenciaga's first couture house in Donostia, Basque Country. She moved Rabanne's family when he opened Balenciaga in Paris in 1937, due to the Spanish Civil War.
Rabanne started his career in fashion by creating jewelry for Givenchy, Dior, and Balenciaga and founded his own fashion house in 1966. He used unconventional materials such as metal, paper, and plastic for his metal couture and flamboyant designs. Rabanne is known for the green costume worn by Jane Fonda in the 1968 science-fiction film Barbarella. In 1968, he launched Rabanne perfumes.
How I styled it: This dress is surprisingly heavy, but the weight of the fabric drags it down a little bit, so I couldn't decide if it needed a belt. I wore this dress with a pair of vintage earrings, a vintage belt from Etsy and the Twin Set Platform pumps.
Size and fit: I got a US 6, and this floral print dress is surprisingly comfy like a nightgown, and kind of looks like one too. This stretchy jersey dress features a high collar with pussy bow, structured shoulders, front-button closure, a gathered bodice, long sleeves with flared cuffs, and a handkerchief hem.
Honest review: I love all the Paco Rabanne dresses I've rented so far, but this one looks a little like a Halloween costume.
DID THEY DELIVER?
- What items were most helpful and versatile to own this week to ensure I got the most out of my rental and completed the look I craved? Despite being super short, I got a ton of wear out of the Smurfette dress and the Ulla Johnson blouse too.
- Did they meet or exceed expectations? RTR exceeded expectations.
- What’s the return process like? Simple! Just place your items in the pre-paid garment bag, slip in the return label, and send it back via UPS. You can also drop it off at one of their exclusive drop-off points in some of the major cities.
Sometimes I just don't know what goes through my mind when I order clothes. I guess I'd be a little more strategic if I were paying for it myself, but I tend to rent items I wouldn't normally purchase, or new styles, colors or designs I'm curious to try. My least favorite item this week was the gingham dress because it looks a little Amish to me, and I used to go up to Lancaster, PA with my parents when I was little. I think I might have to run out to Target or Nordstrom Rack to find a slip before I wear it because it's see-through!
I'll probably skip next week... I need to play catch-up with clothes and I won't have anywhere to take pics. It's hard to write about items when I haven't had a chance to wear them out and I've got Armoire's items waiting for me.
If you celebrate, we wish you a very Merry Christmas weekend! Mr. HGL is hating his festive scarf, so I'm glad I got a pic of him in it before he tore it to shreds.
VALUE BREAKDOWN: The Up to 8 Items membership costs $99/month and goes up to $135/month after the first two months) and so far, I've received styles with a retail value of $94,577.
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