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Will The Fashion Rental Market Ever Recover From Covid-19?

 

Written BY EMILY CHAN for Vogue online

With weddings on hold and summer holidays a distant dream, clothing rental has fallen dramatically since the pandemic began. But will coronavirus change our long-term attitude towards sharing clothes? Here’s what we know so far.

Before the pandemic struck, renting clothes was seen as the ultimate solution to the damaging buy-once wear-once culture so many of us had become trapped in. Instead of purchasing a new dress for a wedding or holiday, you could borrow one instead (thereby preventing it from ending up in landfill once you no longer had use for it). The clothing rental market was also starting to change the high street. H&M and Ganni were among the first retailers to begin trialling a rental model back in 2019, while several new platforms including Hurr Collective and My Wardrobe HQ have launched pop-ups in department stores over the past year.

But now that weddings have been put on hold and holidays seem like a distant dream, the future of rental — which was projected to be worth $2.5 billion (£2 billion) by 2023 — looks far from certain. In the US, Rent the Runway, the poster child for the fashion rental model, has already announced lay-offs, temporary pay cuts and furloughed staff in response to the pandemic. “Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, RTR’s sales have dropped significantly,” the company said in a statement on Twitter. “We therefore have had to make difficult decisions to sustain the business by cutting costs across the board.”

The company has also faced allegations that it has not properly protected warehouse employees from coronavirus — claims that it has since strongly refuted in both a statement online and a letter from CEO Jennifer Hyman to staff. The brand says it has enacted a series of safety measures in its warehouses, as well as giving employees the option of choosing not to work, staying home and using paid benefits. “This pandemic is far from over,” the company added in its statement. “We know that we will have to continue to make difficult decisions as we navigate forward, but we will always act with our values first.”

The long-term future of rental

While rental has been hit hard during international lockdowns, there are already positive signs that the sector is recovering. YCloset in China has seen the numbers of people renting increase since lockdown measures were eased.

The stripped-back lifestyle we’ve all become accustomed to since the pandemic began is likely to have a long-term effect on our shopping habits. Sustainability is expected to remain a huge concern — meaning the rental model, as an alternative to buying new clothes outright, is unlikely to disappear anytime soon.


You can rent these wedding dresses

Make a sustainable choice for your big day and rent your wedding dress.

Girl Meets Dress have been hiring wedding gowns to brides all over Europe for the past 10 years and the 2nd half of 2020 as the UK comes out of the coronavirus wedding ceremony lockdown, is looking increasingly busy.

Not only a massive money saver, but a smart choice for a guilt free day. How many brides do you know trying to sell their incredible dresses because they realise no use for the gown and the space required to store it.

Many of our brides postponed weddings this summer until winter 2020, or waiting until 2021. Whatever your plans, have a browse of our current selections – and keep an eye on the newsletter for new dresses coming in all the time!

Wedding Dresses

White Dresses

Currently popular is the blush MARCHESA strapless gown https://hire.girlmeetsdress.com/collections/dress-hire/products/blush-strapless-tulle-gown

And if you want a wedding dress that is not the white traditional large gown, this Marchesa is a straighter beautifully embroidered dress with chiffon sleeeves https://hire.girlmeetsdress.com/collections/dress-hire/products/metallic-embroidered-tulle-gown


Hire Bridesmaid Dresses | The Best Place to Rent Bridesmaid Dresses

 

These are strange times and dresses have certainly not been at the forefront of anyone’s mind over the past 12 weeks. Because most of you have not needed to wear dresses recently, we saw no point in trying to push summer styles and encouraging hiring. We know you all have so many more important and difficult things on your minds and we did not want to add to the retail and social media noise.

The past couple of weeks we have seen an increase in enquiries relating to events taking place in late Summer/ Autumn 2020 and also delayed weddings. Many of you had to postpone the big day until later in the summer or move it until Autumn / Winter 2020 or

Just like you can rent wedding dresses and rent a tuxedo, you can hire bridesmaids dresses.

Every member of the bride squad deserves to feel their best on the big day! Hiring a Girl Meets Dress bridesmaid dresses are perfect for the occasion.

The choice of the bridesmaid dresses have to be in line with the wedding theme: in addition, you have to find a shade of colour suitable for all of your friends, taking in consideration the different sizes of the body, skin shades and hair colour.

Talking about the trends of 2020 wedding season, it is immediately clear that blush bridesmaid dresses, pale green bridesmaid dresses, and the multiway wrap dresses bridesmaid are very popular at the moment. Girl Meets Dress has been named as one of The Best Places to Rent Bridesmaid Dresses.

Shop online with Girl Meets Dress for affordable bridesmaid dresses that don’t require alterations. Bridesmaid dress rental:

So, how can you find a dress in line with the wedding theme, perfect for your body shape, trendy and in your budget? Rent it!

Hire bridesmaid dresses and find the perfect bridesmaid dress for you or for your bridesmaids!

Our team of stylists can send you a list of suggestions and give you advice and

Order up to 3 dresses and only pay for the one you wear. Mix & match your bridesmaid dresses.

And, don’t worry about your location because we can send dresses to you all over Europe.


Mother of the Groom dresses to rent

So many of you get in touch asking what to wear as mother of the groom for a wedding this year. We will be soon adding a unique category for this, but for now we direct you to the mother of the bride as this is where the most similar dresses to rent should be https://hire.girlmeetsdress.com/collections/mother-of-the-bride-dresses

Browse Mother of the Bride dresses to rent >

The most popular features of a mother of the groom dress to hire is: Dresses with sleeves, Midi and mid length dresses, Nothing too low cut or revealing, and comfortable. Usually this a dress that you will have to be wearing all day from the church / daytime service all the way through to the evening. So versatility is key and if something can be further dressed up for the night time (a change of shoes, or jewellery) this has added benefit.

Alternatively many of you hire 2 dresses, one for the day and another to change into later on, and often the evening dress code is black tie so an evening dress to rent is your preference!

Browse dresses with sleeves to rent >

Browse Black tie dresses to rent >

Browse evening gowns to rent >

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