ON THE ROAD: Rent the Runway, the Web site for renting designer dresses and accessories, has its sights on the travel market. Rent the Runway “closets” at the W Union Square, W Times Square, W New York and W Downtown hotels in Manhattan will be set up Sept. 5 for fashion week. “Since we’ve launched two years ago, we’ve found that 20 percent of our orders were being shipping to hotels,” said Jennifer Hyman, cofounder of Rent the Runway. That led to discussions with W Hotels, which is providing Rent the Runway free lobby space for the closets. They’ll be curated by fashion director Lucy Sykes and manned by Rent the Runway stylists with iPads so renters can view the Web site for further options. Items can be picked up on the spot or ordered off the site for delivery.
Each closet will display two dozen dresses, as well as jewelry and accessories, and styles will change daily to highlight designers showing that day. For W Union Square and W Downtown, there will be edgier brands and designers including Opening Ceremony, Yigal Azrouël and Erin Fetherson, to reflect the neighborhoods. At the uptown hotels, there will be a traditional array including Halston Heritage, Badgley Mischka and Vera Wang. “People are renting for special occasions,” Hyman said. “Travel is a special occasion and renting clothes while traveling is the ultimate convenience. You can travel without suitcases.”
This story first appeared in the August 24, 2012 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.