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As a surprise to approximately no one, the Rent the Runway sample sale debuted early this morning as a total mob scene. Shoppers were required to first brave the initial line outside, which was split into two parts, and then fight for standing room inside the crowded space. And that's all before waiting in line for the communal fitting room —Trader Joe's Union Square isn't looking so bad now, huh?
Aside from the crowds, prices seemed to be, if not lower than usual, than at least no more expensive. You'll find plenty of cocktail dresses, work-appropriate shifts, and even evening gowns for under $100, and nearly everything — besides couture by Moschino, Reem Acra, or other high-end names — is under $200.
Starting with the short and mid-length dresses located in the center, there are tons of floral print and structured day-to-night dresses by mid-range brands like Kate Spade, Sachin + Babi, Theia, Nanette Lepore, Elizabeth and James, and others, most of which are between $75 and $100. While nearly all stock is made of dresses, we spied a particularly cute Nanette Lepore vest for just $46 (because as we've learned, sleeveless jackets aren't totally insane).
On the more expensive end, there are a few Moschino couture dresses we noticed at past sales for between $300 and $500. It wouldn't be a Rent the Runway sample sale without a little Herve Leger bandage dress action, of course — all of those are around $150 range.
Onto the gowns, which make up the left wall of the space: The first piece we noticed was a pink and red Jill Stuart gown that emulates the Thakoon style that Emma Stone wore to last year's Met Ball (bonus: this one's only $73). In the same vein, there's a pink and red ML Monique Lhullier gown for a mere $69. Badgley Mischka makes up a large part of the floor-length gown selection, ranging from bridesmaid-esque lacey dresses in muted jewel tones (mostly for between $100 and $200) to a particularly flashy sequined low-back gown for $72. There's also that same Catherine Deane navy and gold gown we've seen before, but it's the same price ($342) and completely ripped at the neck.
Accessories are made up of mostly costume jewelry and a few very sparkly clutches we've definitely seen at past sales. There's also a few Rent the Runway-branded hair accessories for under $50, as well as a couple pairs of Balenciaga sunglasses — still in their original cases — for around $100.
Judging from the last few sales, there's a good chance we can expect markdowns before the sale ends on Sunday, so unless you're prepared to deal with some rather aggressive crowds, you might want to sit out the first few days. Check the Dealfeed below for hours and location.