Jenn Hyman and Jenny Fleiss Our mission is to make women feel empowered and self-confident every single day.We were told we were crazy. We’re glad we didn’t listen...
When we’re able to wear what makes us feel our best, we can be our best selves, and in turn live our best lives. Yet we’ve had to compromise – we’ve spent a lot of time and money on our clothes, but never had what we wanted. The result? A closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!
We are changing that by building the world’s first and only ‘closet in the cloud’: a dream closet filled with an infinite selection of designer styles. Imagine every trend, every color, every print, everything you’ve ever wanted to wear-but-settled-for-the-boring-black-dress instead. Some call it fashion freedom. We call it a fashion revolution.
With an unlimited closet, women can more freely express themselves and dress for the incredible lives they lead – whether that’s a special look for a big event or rotating outfits for everyday. We believe that renting is the future of getting dressed, and we’re only getting started... What will you do with your closet now that you Rent the Runway?
Here’s how it all started. NOVEMBER 30, 2008
The ‘aha’ Moment Over Thanksgiving, Jenn’s younger sister Becky showed off a $2,000 designer dress she bought to go to a wedding. This splurge was sending her into credit card debt! Jenn wondered, wouldn’t it be so much smarter if we could rent designer items rather than purchase them? She returned to Harvard Business School and shared the idea with her friend, Jenny.
Dream Big and Go After It! Jenn and Jenny wondered whether the fashion industry would be on board with their idea. They cold-emailed Diane von Furstenberg that afternoon (why not start at the top?!) who agreed to a meeting. The very next day, they walked into Diane’s office (wearing their DVF dresses) and introduced themselves as the founders of Rent the Runway. While Diane was initially skeptical, she offered key advice and gave each a good luck charm.
Everyone Deserves a Cinderella Experience It was time to test whether women would ever rent clothes. Jenn, Jenny, and Becky set up a pop-up shop on campus where students could rent on the spot. One woman spotted a Tory Burch sequined dress across the room, ran over, put it on, and exclaimed, “I look so hot!”. It dawned on them that renting could make women feel amazing, solidifying RTR’s mission to deliver that feeling of empowerment to all women.