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The Rise of Rented Luxury

— September 14, 2006 — Luxury
I am pretty excited to see the rise of rented luxury emerging as a trend. Why? Because Trend Hunter first started covering the trend early in the year. Check out our article on Designer Handbags for Rent Online.

Well... Now the Trend has hit the NY Times:
During the round of parties preceding the New York Fashion Week, Stephen Knoll, a hair stylist, gave my satchel- size Yves Saint Laurent Muse bag the once-over.
"Handsome," he murmured. Then he focused on my Marni coat, with its spray of plastic flowers. "Gorgeous," he pronounced. I neglected to tell him that both were rentals, leased with the objective of drawing covetous stares from my peers. Confessing would have spoiled the fun.

Milton Pedraza, the director of the Luxury Institute, a consumer research group, would have said I was renting not just a look but an experience: In this case, the feeling of one-upmanship that comes with flaunting the season's most sought-after items.

"With luxury goods," Pedraza said by phone, "many people today are more interested in collecting experiences than they are in actually owning the asset." He added that even among the not- so-rich, the thrill of possession palls fast. Wealthy people in particular "are tired of the clutter in their lives," he said. "They don't want the hassles of ownership. More than possessions, they want variety." (NEW YORK TIMES)

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