lets you- well, rent the runway, essentially

The NYT featured a nifty little startup for web-savvy thin girls who want to wear the latest looks without investing in them.

“Investment pieces” have long been the blessing and curse of a girl who wants to have a few chances to wear designer things but doesn’t have a trust-fund baby’s bank account. Of the moment pieces fall to the wayside for well tailored, timeless pieces that never have that whole “right now” thing going for them. And when all your college friends are getting hitched, you don’t want to show up in the same LBD every time.

Following on the heels (heels? Is there a shoe one, too?) of Bag, Borrow, or Steal, two enterprising clotheshorses have started-up a Netflix-like dress rental service that allows women with champagne tastes and really quite convincing and well made Target purses to own a piece of their Cinderella dress, at least for a night. The site has some great, built-in safeguards against disappointment in cultivating the tricky relationship between a girl and her dress. Execution, says the Times, is “crucial.” On-call stylists, 24 hour exchange turnarounds, and an extra size included on the house may knock out initial qualms about the service.

Even the designers whose pieces feature in the collection (including Diane Von Furstenberg, Hervé Léger, Lela Rose and Proenza Schouler) dig the idea:

“In challenging economic times, it’s important for brands to reach a larger audience and age demographic that you wouldn’t normally because of the price,” she said. “This is a great way to do it without jeopardizing the brand.”

Rental pieces range from $50-200 for a four night rental and include dry cleaning.