Is the Most Perfect Wedding Dress the Rented One?

Published 28/02/2020
By: xxx Published: d/m/Y

Let me just start by saying this: the expectations of what a wedding dress should be is all too much pressure on a piece of garment.

I asked on Instagram the other day what you guys want your wedding dress to be like and there were so many wishes, demands and big words.

Of course I don’t want to diminish that in any way, the opposite. I have those ideas too. I mean, who hasn’t been dreaming of the dress you’re gonna say I do in to the love of your life? God I am getting emotional just writing this. But what I am saying is that of course you want your wedding dress to be perfect, nay, better than perfect. You want it to be the best fucking dress of your life.

But I think there is where most of us get lost. Because all of a sudden there are so.many.questions.

Do I want my wedding dress to be modern? Wait, is modern and trendy the same when it comes to wedding dresses? No? Or wait, do I want it to be timeless? So when I look back at it in 10 years or 30 years I won’t be ashamed and think omg what was I thinking? But maybe I will anyway, and maybe that is okay?Also, do I want it to be full-length even though I never ever would do full-length any other day in my life? Do I want sleeves or not? Is is ok to show shoulders in church 2020? Do I want it to be lace? Or maybe silk?

And hold on, does it even have to be white?

I’m not conservative (no shit) so I’d say rules are more guidelines to have fun with (or make fun of, your wedding your choice).

But now that it’s my turn to ask myself those questions and actually having to answer them too I find one question to be louder than all the other ones. Since I probably only will wear this dress once, is it that important that I own it?

Renting clothes and accessories is a pretty new phenomenon. It has been around for years, but people haven’t really talked about it. The owning part of wearing an expensive designer piece or a unique vintage found has always been too important to us. Who are we if we are only loaning the things we are wearing? Are we still cool? Are we still as happy to wear it? I am gonna go with yes, you are exactly the same only with clothes or why not accessories that aren’t gonna be around you forever. And to be frank with you, listening to studies being made about our shopping behavior, most of your wardrobe won’t be anyways. Receipt in your pocket or not.

I think many of us are afraid to rent clothes and especially designer clothes because we are scared we might ruin them when biking in a rush to work one morning, or having someone spill coffee all over you on the subway.

And of course the same goes with wedding dresses — what happens if the dress rip or a get bad stain?

But the question is, what is this scare compared to spending an enormous amount of money on a wedding dress that you will wear once and then keep in the back of your closet forever. That mindset is what scares me. We and our past generation has a weird idea that we deserve to have and to keep a lot of stuff. I am guilty too.

And don’t get me started on the my pontential daughter (or son) might want to wear my wedding dress one day when she or he gets married-crap. With all of those questions above, do you think she really wants to or are you trying to guilt your unborn child into wearing your wedding dress? Come on.

Ok I know people do this and it’s very beautiful when it happens, but it’s a long shot.

Choosing a wedding dress that has already been made or worn by someone else doesn’t mean that you won’t be getting the dress of your dreams, quite the opposite.

It’s like when you were looking for the partner that made you end up in looking for the dress of your dreams. The partner of your dreams. Did that person look, feel or act like you imagined? I have a hard time believing that. But when you found that person, your person, did all the ideas about what you thought you wanted go away? This is a cliché but you know what they say about clichés, they are clichés for a real reason.

You may think the length, the color, a certain neckline or whatever you have pictured in your head is the way to go. But when you try dress after dress you’ll know when the right one slips on.

A few weeks ago I met with Elsa Billgren who besides from being a writer and podcaster runs her own wedding dress rental business, to see if I could fall in love with a dress. Chocker, I fell in love with four. It was Valentine’s Day and I brought two close friends to be my extended tastebuds (and cry buddies).

I asked if she could answer some questions for a mini Q & A regarding the subject. Elsa has her HQ for her wedding dress rental in the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Stockholm and has had the business up-and-running for 10 years and counting, making her a true early adopter on the clothing rental field.

Tell me about how you came up with the idea to rent out wedding dresses?

I’ve always loves vintage dresses and collected them since my teens but wedding dresses became my obsession 2010 when I was looking for my own wedding dress. I worked at Beyond Retro as PR Manager and really went crazy with all the lovely dresses. When I started to collect them my blog readers contacted me and asked if they can rent them so the business started itself, from passion.

How do you find the dresses?

I find them in vintage stores and flea markers, buy from collectors and most of all I get them from old ladies who donates their wedding dresses to me which is amazing. The stories and history they tell!

Do you see a change in the way women look at renting their wedding dress compared to when you started 10 years ago?

Absolutely! Ten years ago women felt they had the right to finally buy that expencive dress they longed for but today the ultimate luxury it to not damage the planet and wear amazing and unique designs and craftsmanship

To a woman who wants to rent her wedding dress but think’s it’s sad she can’t keep the dress afterwards, what would you say?

A wedding dress always end up just hang in the wardrobe anyway and by renting one you have a bigger budget for food, a hotel for grandma or more champagne!

When it comes to trends, what dresses are the most popular right now with your brides?

Women often askes for flowy and romantic, simple but great design. Something ageless and well made, witch always is the case in vintage anyway.

How does one come in contact with you regarding renting one of your dresses?

The best way is to email me as soon as you have a wedding day booked!

Get in touch with Elsa on: [email protected]

Published 28/02/2020

Fanny Ekstrand is a writer, creative consultant and founder of Hobnob. She says she is the master of vintage shopping and knows all the pasta dishes in the world.

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