Get big brands for small bucks

Get big brands for small bucks

Outfits by RentSher

Ever imagined wearing a Manish Malhotra gown for your ‘sangeet’ ceremony or a Sabyasachi lehenga for your wedding? This can be a reality now.

Fashion rental startups which allow you to get that designer outfit for yourself without burning a hole in the pocket have mushroomed in the city. 

Breaking the age-old notion of frowning upon something worn by others, more and more youngsters are opting to hire outfits for special occasions like parties, graduation ceremonies and of course weddings.

“The perception has changed from owning to renting. The younger lot wants to experience things and invest their money in the right place. They believe in investing in more important aspects of a wedding than on something they would perhaps wear only once or twice,” says Sweta Poddar, founder, CandidKnots, a fashion rental. It’s not just the bride and groom, even guests are opting for this service now, she says.

Echoing this sentiment is Saad Madaas, business development head, Rent A Style. “We often get customers who hire outfits for three to four days if they are attending an outstation wedding. In such cases, we take an advance token amount and their ID proof.”

‘Rent A Style’ also allows one to hire jewellery, bags and footwear for both men and women. “Usually we charge a price that is 15 per cent of the original amount,” says Saad.

“Newly-weds are now becoming more aware and practical. Though it might be a little difficult to convince one’s family members about hiring wedding outfits, once they come in and see the varied choices available and the hygiene factor we keep in mind, it becomes easier,” says Deepa Kalro, co-founder, Dress Bank.

Her startup also customises suits for men. It provides ties, shoes and tuxedos along with lehengas, saris and gowns. A bridal lehenga can cost between Rs 2,500 to Rs 10,000, a tuxedo costs between Rs 1,000 to Rs 2,000 and a sherwani is priced between Rs 1,000 and Rs 3,000.

“There are so many players in the market that people are spoilt for choice. We source our clothes from different parts of India like Kolkata, Delhi and Ahmedabad,” says Deepa.

Couples also hire apparel for pre-wedding photoshoots, says Harsh Dhand, founder and CEO, RentSher.

“Tier II cities like Pune, Chandigarh and even Bengaluru had shops where people could rent jewellery and wedding outfits, as early as the 1980s and 1990s. However, these places had an offline presence. Since everything is moving online today, people want the same experience, easy access and quality assurance — all rolled into one,” says Harsh.

‘RentSher’ gets over 30 to 40 queries every month for wedding outfits and jewellery. Christian wedding gowns, lehenga-choli and sherwanis are the most frequently rented items.

“Our customers are mostly those who look for a mid-range setup. We follow the global norm — which is fixing the rent at anywhere between five per cent to 10 per cent of the selling value. For example, a suit that costs Rs 10,000 can be hired for anywhere between Rs 500 to Rs 1,000 for a time period spanning 24 hours to 48 hours,” says Harsh.