A Look Inside Rent the Runway’s Pop-Up Showroom

Score Reem Acra, Christian Siriano, and Moschino for just a couple hundred bucks.
Rent the Runway pops up with some beautiful dresses—like Michelle Obama’s Tracy Reese favorite—at LivingSocial this weekend. Photographs by Diana Elbasha.

Online shopping can be a major convenience—you can browse multiple sites in the same
time it would take to comb through just one brick-and-mortar. But there’s always a
risk factor, like, say, when a coral gown actually arrives in bright orange, and in
a size too big.

For those who too often find themselves in such circumstances, Rent the Runway’s Faith
in Fashion’s Future showroom at LivingSocial this weekend is a savior. Open through
Sunday at 918 F Street, the event brings together some of the site’s most popular
designs, which are all for rent at a fraction of the cost of purchasing your own—perfect
for inauguration weekend events, from a black-tie ball to Sunday brunch. Tickets,
which get you a one-on-one session with one of six RTR stylists and a tote bag, are
$8 online.

I told my stylist I wanted a simple, floor-length
gown with straps, and within two
minutes I had a violet Nicole Miller dress

(rentable for $100) in my hands and a
Kate Spade necklace ($45) from the Bling Bar—a table full of
clutches and statement
jewelry—to accompany it.

The showroom features a range of black-tie and cocktail gowns from high-end designers such as Christian Siriano, Versace, and Pamela Rolland.
Don’t forget the accessories: RTR has you covered with a large offering of luxe jewelry and handbags for your inaugural needs.

Passersby may be tempted by the now-famous Tracy Reese brocade dress Michelle Obama
wore
to the Democratic National Convention this fall, which is displayed in the window
at 918 F. Fear not, non-ticket-holders: Walk-ins are welcome for the same $8 admission
fee.

Other standouts were a

shimmering Carmen Marc Valvo peplum dress ($185) and a

red-carpet-worthy piece ($250) by Pamela Rolland. At the Bling
Bar, an Oscar de la
Renta cluster ring

($30) caught my eye.

Guests are free to try on anything in the showroom and have their picture taken at
a photo booth for a real-life sample of their inaugural look. Rather than going to
the site later to place your order, stick around the showroom for 20 percent off.

*Dollar amounts reflect rental prices on Rent the Runway’s website.

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