By Brooke Bunch / Photos by Sara Norris
Hair and Makeup by Pretty Is, Pretty-Is.com
Third time was definitely not the charm. After another desperate search through my closet,
following two unsuccessful endeavors, I realized it was hopeless. It was the same old story every time - been there, worn that. Ew!
I needed an entire new wardrobe, but that wasn't in the cards, at least as far as my bank account was concerned. Fortunately, I had heard of the perfect place to go: Pretty Is, a clothing rental boutique (see "Every Wear,"below) for the modern woman who wants to stay on the cutting-edge of fashion without paying for it - not in full, anyway. So I went there and, with a little help from the proprietors, picked four looks for the week ahead.
Turning fashion week into fashion, weekly
Pretty Is as pretty does - and Lupe Ahern does it pretty damn well.
A former-office- manager-turned-stylist, Ahern offers a brilliant service for fashion-forward females: Pretty Is, a San Diego clothing rental service that eases the pain of the ubiquitous I-don't-have-anything-to- wear syndrome plaguing today's woman.
"It's hard keeping up with the latest trends and always presenting your best self in the midst of everything else you have going on," says Ahern, who runs the business with her husband, Fritz. "Now, you don't have to, just leave it to us."
How it works:
Every 30 days, members have access to up to 20 customized outfits (three to five per week, depending upon membership level) complete with shoes, jewelry and accessories - all for a flat fee. Customers return the previous week's unwashed wares during weekly styling sessions, where they're set up for the week ahead.
The customer's obligation is simple: Wear. Return. Repeat. Pretty Is even handles the dry cleaning - pretty cool.
"You'll never have to worry about what to wear again," says store manager and co-stylist Idania Mejia.
Ahern and Meija work one-on-one with their clientele, who range in age from 22 to 62, providing personalized attention to body shape, style and individual taste. Whether it's a beach party, a nine-to-five or a sexified-girls-nights- out, this duo's got their clients covered.
A manifestation of every girl's dream closet, the Third Avenue boutique has an entire room of dedicated to shoes - stilettos, boots, flats - in addition to a girly vanity room with salon chairs and wall-to- wall mirrors for hair and make-up appointments.
"Being trendy is a lifestyle, and you don't have to be rich and famous to look top-notch," said Ahern. "We tell our girls that, once a member of Pretty Is, your life is always a fashion show."
Pretty Is offers two monthly membership options: at $85 a month, the Chic membership includes three weekly outfits from head-to-toe. The Couture is a step up at $105, covering five customized outfits per week. Both memberships include weekly onsite styling sessions. Individual items/outfits can be rented for three days at a time.
418 3rd Ave., Gaslamp