Thanks to lovely folks at Devi's Closet, I got to fulfil a life long dream today. It wasn't the biggest of dreams, but it was something I'd always wanted to do; Rock a Sari.
I've had a little obsession with India, growing up in the UK (and for some reason this always surprises people...people who apparently don't know history I guess) I was surrounded by Indian and Pakistani culture - the women always looked so glamourous, I was jealous of their beautiful hair and their colourful clothing and jewelry. My sister, who went to college in the nineties, wore gorgeous indian skirts picked up from markets, burned incense and kept little mirrored elephants and other Indian inspired ephemera in her college flat, is ultimately to blame for my obsession with Indian aesthetics. Her close friend in college gave me a beautiful framed Mendhi stencil for one occasion or another, that still hangs in my parents bathroom.
Between the obsession with colour and texture, the college aged endorsement and Gwen Stefani rocking a bindhi in every No Doubt video - I wanted a little piece of this to, and, the age of 13 (after my first solo expedition to Camden market) I armed myself with a packet of bindhi's. As I've gotten older, Ebay has made global shopping easier and I've gotten braver - incorporating more Indian accessories into my closet, from a matha patti to the slippers featured here and I still rock a bindhi to this day.
But my obsession with India doesn't just stop with the clothes. It's by far my favourite food - sadly under represented in the US, a good curry lives on every corner in the UK - and a trip to Brick Lane in London blows my mind every time.
Anyhow, if you're anything like me, Devi's Closet is your new best friend. Much like Rent the Runway, you can rent a piece of clothing, jewelry or accessory for a period of 4-8 days, the big difference is you're not renting a Zac Posen gown, or a Milly sundress - but a Sari/Saree or a Salwar Kameez, or Lengha. They even have dresses and jewelry from Indian designers and... a men's section for all your Kurta and Sherwani needs.
Just like Rent the Runway, they ship your outfit to you (a Sari comes with a Choli and petticoat - plus a pack of Bindhi's!) and a prepaid envelope to ship it back when you're done!
Aside from wearing the Sari being a joyous occasion - and even if I do say so myself, I look good in a Sari, half the fun was working out how on earth one puts it on! It's actually rather simple once you get the hang of it - and mine was super simple as it was actually a lengha sari - meaning, no pleats for me!
You start with a Choli (cropped blouse) and petticoat and wrap and tuck the less decorated end of the Sari (which is essentially about 6 feet of cloth) into the petticoat to secure it - bring the Sari once more round the body and pleat the decorative end (the Pallav) and put it over your left shoulder - then wriggle (no seriously, you kind of need to wiggle about in it so it drapes nicely)
If this was a traditional Sari there would have been an added pleating session at the waist, just to complicate things :)
All in all this was wonderful experience - renting is on the pricier side - more than Rent the Runway on average, but it's such a fun experience and there is no outfit out there that'll make you feel more special (aside from maybe a wedding dress!) I'm dying to wear one again, now I just have to think of an excuse (or maybe just plan that big dream...a trip to India!)
Sari was rented free of charge from Devi's Closet for review.