Reporting Natalie Nyhus
ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — How would you like to wear a $500 dress, return it and not get in trouble? A local boutique is now offering dress rentals.
This concept exists primarily online at companies like renttherunway.com. Instead of buying a dress outright, you can rent a designer gown for a fraction of the cost. That is, as long as you don’t mind wearing something that’s been worn before.
Stephanie’s in St. Paul is launching a dress rental program called “Dress for the Occasion” Thursday, Sept. 5. And you can get into a designer dress for as little as $38. Nicole Miller dresses originally priced at $495 and $440 rent for $85 and $75. A David Meister strapless sequin dress originally priced at $478 rents for $85.
Stephanie Morrissey, owner of Stephanie’s, is eager to roll out the program.
“We are renting our dresses to customers who might be going to multiple occasions where they need different dresses,” said Morrissey. “We are offering them at a discounted rate. This is providing that service for an inexpensive rate so they can wear it and be done.”
Stephanie’s is saving people money, and guaranteeing they won’t be caught in the same thing twice.
“I feel so good when people come in and tell me about their dress, and how many compliments they got from people,” said Morrissey. “It’s just amazing.”
Rentals range in price from $38-$125. You can get something for a three-day or seven-day period. And if you love the dress, you can buy it for a discounted rate.
The biggest difference between Stephanie’s and an online retailer is that you can try on the dresses and pick what’s best for you. Normal wear and tear like stains are covered in the cost of the rental. The dresses get dry cleaned between rentals.