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.
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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