Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Day 1: Girl Meets Dress

Girl has date/party/wedding.

Girl buys dress.

Girl looks fantastic and has a great time.

OK, let's rewind to the dress bit. Usually, with a big event, girl goes shopping, girl finds dress that she can (or can't) afford and girl splurges small (or big) amounts of cash on a dress that she may only end up wearing once.

But what if the girl could borrow a designer dress for a fraction of its actual cost - and for even cheaper than buying a dress? Say, a 3.1 Phillip Lim cocktail dress for £49 or a Proenza Schoulder number for £69?

Enter Girl Meets Dress, the online dress-hire agency where frocks are loaned out from just £29. Need a handbag? You can rent one of those, too, from £15. You don't even need to worry about the dry cleaning as that's included in the hire price.

Simply browse online, choose your dress, wear it and then post it back (free of charge). What's more, you can also try before you buy, or rather borrow, just to make sure it fits.

With more than 400 designer dresses (and counting) from over 90 designer brands, including Erdem, Christopher Kane, Hervé Léger, Stella McCartney and Marc Jacobs, you can have a different dress for each and every occasion. I gave the service a whirl and tried the dresses pictured above.

The red silk Zimmerman dress costs £235, but is just £49 to hire. I like the versatile sash tie which is meant to be knotted in a bow at the front, but looks just as good fastened at the back. And I love that it's such a punchy, stand-out colour.

The black Halston Heritage dress is the same as the peach one Sarah Jessica Parker wears in Sex and the City 2, which is also available to borrow. It originally cost £260 and is £69 to hire. The draped front is very flattering and I like how the silk is shot through with fine silver lurex stripes. Plus, the dress goes perfectly with my River Island clutch.

Lastly, the lilac cotton Philosophy di Alberta Ferretti dress would have cost £265 to buy but is a reasonable £49 to hire. This dress surprised me as it didn't look very special on the hanger, but thanks to the boned bodice and bow detail, it looks great on. And it complements my Chanel Paradoxal nail polish, too.

So, there you have it, my first countdown-to-Christmas blog is how to get that party dress for less.

PS. Sign up for the Girl Meets Dress newsletter and you'll get a £10 welcome voucher. Plus, if you buy a £20 gift voucher between now and Christmas, it's worth £50!


  1. This is not the first dress hire company I've seen but it's such a good idea! I really like the second dress.

  2. I love love love this idea - it's always such a stress to find a dress that's unique at this time of year, so this is perfect. Thanks bargainista! x

  3. Wow I had no idea that it was so cheap to hire designer! It makes it worthwhile given it works out cheaper than high-street most of the time. The red Zimmerman dress is simply stunning.



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