Happy Friday! I'm on the hunt for two items right now and I've spent far too much time on Google. So, last Saturday I went to Bethesda to check out REI for a bike, and then I toured the local resale shops for a vintage dress to wear to the National Press Club gala next week.
During the pandemic, I took up biking since there was a trail right behind the house and it was a great excuse to get away from my ex for many hours at a time. Now, I still live near that trail but many miles in the opposite direction, and because my Achilles seems like it will never fully heal (and I really started to enjoy biking) I've decided to invest in my own bike. I dove into Google to check out all the options and it's seriously overwhelming—and some of the bikes are so expensive! And now that I write for REI at Capital One, it's on my radar constantly so I decided to drop by and play damsel in distress. But bikes are stolen all the time, so I don't want to spend too much money, and the gear is pricey too!
And as for the NPC gala... my friend who works for them put me on the list, and I have nothing to wear! I'm a huge fan of vintage designer dresses, but everything fabulous I've come across is so expensive! I've been writing for one of the top designer resale wholesalers since 2019 and in my opinion, they are charging far too much for the pieces they're getting from overseas, which forces the actual resalers (the online and offline shops you know and love) to charge so much more for these used pieces just to make a profit. If the wholesalers would charge less then the resellers would charge less, but I don't think that's going to happen until people get seriously fed up with the prices and stop buying them.
You may be wondering if I've found anything awesome on the rental market? No, not yet. There are a few items on the list that I'd consider, but I also don't want to wear something too common. I love Zhivago and Zimmerman, but they're not available on the rental market yet, and if I rent something expensive from somewhere like Tulerie, it seems like a waste of money (funny I'm saying that, huh?). Anyway, we'll dive more into my thought processes and what I'm looking for later.
WHAT I’M WEARING THIS WEEK: Armoire
Welcome back to What I'm Wearing This Week: Armoire. For the newbies, every Friday on WIWTW I'll recap the clothing rentals I wore for the week. 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. We’ll explore designers and trends, and a variety of styles and brands. And each week I’ll fill you in on why I chose each item, the total value of the rental compared to the retail price (as of today I've rented $54,609 worth of clothing), and more.
Armoire, which is a clothing rental company for women, is all about female empowerment. From the hand-selected and curated inventory of styles that are designed by the Boss Lady, for the Boss Lady, to their involvement with female-powered brands, and their partnership with Dress for Success Seattle, they’re a brand built for today’s woman.
This is a review of the Unlimited Plan for $249/month.
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the editorial guidelines to learn more about how we review boxes.)
WHAT I RECEIVED
All three items (I'm playing musical rentals again) by White & Warren, Farm RIO, and Lilly Pulitzer arrived on time and in great condition. Each item was fresh from the dry cleaner and neatly folded.
White + Warren Reversible Tie-Neck Metallic Sweater, Retail Value $260, Armoire $130
About the Designer: It all started in 1997 when Susan White Morrissey started working with a facility owner that sources cashmere directly from Mongolian herders. Setting up shop in New York’s Fashion District, Morrissey recruited designers who believed in the idea that cashmere could be an attainable luxury for women like herself. Now 25 years later, it's grown into a close-knit team of 90% women with Susan as CEO and her daughter, Catherine Morrissey, as President.
How I styled it: I wore this festive sweater with a leather pencil skirt, Hermes Clic Clac Bracelet, Saint Laurent Sac de Jour Tote, and a pair of platform pumps.
Size and fit: I got this metallic knit in a medium and it's true to size. Crafted in viscose and polyester, this reversible tie-neck top features a mock neck with back or front tie closure, v-neck back or front, long sleeves with ruffled and elasticized cuffs, and ribbed hem.
Honest review: I first discovered White + Warren back in maybe 2007 when I would hit almost every sample sale in NYC. And while I never purchased anything at their sale, that's how I knew about them. And on the sample sale tip, I used to buy things that didn't fit me and were falling apart simply because they were cheap and designer. What a waste of money!
Farm Rio Mixed Roost Wrap Dress, Retail Value $325, Armoire $192
About the designer: With over 20 years of history, FARM is Brazil’s most beloved clothing and lifestyle brand. The story began in 1997 in Rio at a local independent fashion market called Babilonia Feira Hype where founders Katia Barros and Marcello Bastos took their chances on launching a clothing line that embodies the feminine spirit and vibrant colors of Rio.
Brazilians quickly fell in love with the brand, the booth became a store, that grew into more stores, and now FARM is Brazil’s most recognized brand.
How I styled it: I think I might've jumped seasons a bit too soon for this dress, but I wore it with Kendra Scott Heart Hoops, nude Wolford Nylons, and a pair of Carolina Herrara Ruffled Point-Toe Flats.
Size and fit: I got a medium and it's a weird fit since it's tight in the ribcage, but very loose and oversized toward the waist and hips. Is that because I don't have a booty? I noticed this with the other Farm Rio dress! Well, anyway it's crafted in Swiss dot fabric with a plunging neckline, long puffed sleeves with buttoned cuffs, a wrap-tie waist with beaded tassels, and a tiered ruffle skirt with asymmetrical hem. I had to use double-sided tape to keep the plunge in place.
Condition: Excellent. Aside from one strand of beads popping off the waist tie, it's barely been worn.
Honest review: Ugh, did you see that Mr. HGL tried to pee in the corner of the couch again? Maybe I should take him to the vet because he's been peeing on my bed pretty often too. I don't want to make him go through painful testing, but maybe he's got a UTI. Luckily, I live in an area with two different exotic animal hospitals and many rabbit experts!
As for the dress, it's a bit tight around the bust and the deep v-neckline will reveal all unless you double-side tape it. Also, the rooster print is a little too childish for me.
Lilly Pulitzer Georgi Puffed Sleeve Lace Shift Dress, Retail Value $258, Armoire $194
About the designer: Lilly Pulitzer set out to create her own happiness, opening a juice stand in Palm Beach. In need of an everyday uniform, she asked her dressmaker for something to camouflage splashes of citrus juice.
The result was a comfortable, sleeveless shift dress made of colorful printed cotton. Since those early days, Lilly designs have been beloved for their casual glamour, vibrant optimism, and endlessly joyful spirit. Lilly was an original with the confidence to break all the rules, the humility to pull it off, and the vision to make women feel as good as they look. Today, her spirit is reflected in the brand’s distinctive prints and lively colors, which inspire everyone to shine bright and stand out.
How I styled it: The weather here (and everywhere) is so off right now. It was almost 70 yesterday! And while I'd never complain about warm weather, it makes clothing rentals a little tricky. So, I paired this dress with Wolford Nude Nylons (again), Charlotte Olympia Suede Slingback Pumps, a vintage Chanel, and a vintage mink jacket.
Size and fit: One of my best friends is in love with Lilly Pulitzer and she said it's because of the fit and the colors look amazing against her pale skin. I can see her points with this dress, but I actually felt like it was a little big and I wish it were more form-fitting. It's a lined nylon and cotton dress with a color lace overlay, round neckline, puffed shoulder, long sleeves with elasticized cuffs, back zip closure, and scalloped lace hem.
Condition: Brand new with tags, y'all!
Honest review: I grew up in a preppy town where lacrosse is king, and Lilly Pulitzer is queen; therefore, I've always shied away from preppy designers. While Lilly's signature prints give me nightmares, discovering her designs on Armoire has made me realize that not everything Lilly features weird coral prints, random lobsters, and watercolor palm trees. And while I love Palm Beach, I still refuse to buy pearls or wear a bow in my hair.
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? I got the most wear out of the sweater, and the least out of the Lilly Pulitzer Lace Dress because it's just not springtime yet (although it kind of feels like it).
- Did they meet or exceed expectations? Armoire continues to invest in new pieces, and that's great!
- What’s the return process like? Place the items in the bag, seal it up and that's it!
Oy! Let's dive into my thought process right now. I can rent a dress and run the risk of someone else showing up wearing it too (which is very possible), I could buy something brand new and then resell it, or I could scour the resale and vintage market for something unique. Then again, I could commit to an unknown designer and scoop up a dress on a site like Wolf & Badger, but I won't be able to resell it because no one knows the designer.
I also want to rent shoes. I know shoe rentals would be kind of gross and difficult for someone like me who has totally busted feet, but why doesn't this exist?
Stay tuned. The clock is ticking, and I really need to make up my mind by tomorrow at the latest.
CAN YOU STILL GET THIS BOX IF YOU SIGN UP TODAY? Yes, all these items are still available to rent.
VALUE BREAKDOWN: The Unlimited membership costs $249/month and so far, I've received styles with a retail value of $54,609!
What are your thoughts about Armoire and rentals in general? Let me know what you think down below!
Please do not enter your email address in the Name field or in the comment content. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *. Remember to post with kindness and respect. Comments with offensive language, cruelness to others, etc will not be approved. See our full comment policy here.