Renting an outfit for special-event dressing has become a cinch with so many clothing rental services available, from Rent the Runway and Nuuly to Gwynnie Bee and Tulerie.
There are similar companies for renting jewelry, but lending diamond and precious gemstone baubles comes with more risk—so fewer entrepreneurs have attempted a rental business.
A new partnership between Signet-owned brands Zales and Rocksbox aims to fix that. The two companies have joined forces to launch Signet’s first-ever fine jewelry rental program, under the Zales banner.
Rocksbox president Allison Vigil recently gave us the details of the co-branded rental initiative; she noted that early market testing demonstrated that fine jewelry was in demand for birthday parties and special occasions, but above all, weddings. “We see that consumers want stylish, quality products with shorter and shorter lead times, particularly for special occasions like trips, galas, and weddings,” she explained. “And they like the concept of being able to try a trend before committing to purchase.”
She added, “How customers view jewelry rental shows they’re looking for accessible luxury in all aspects of their life, not just milestone moments. As the program expands across the country, we look forward to additional uses for rental and try-before-you-buy jewelry.”
The program is available to consumers who shop select Zales locations, but plans are in the works to roll it out to more locations asap. Customer can make in-store appointments with the option to browse a designated rental digital look book before renting pieces in-store. “Our overall goal, whether the customer views the jewelry online or in-store, is to make fine jewelry more accessible through the rental program and continue to curate their experience to make it efficient and easier,” Vigil said.
The specially curated rental collection comprises 36 pieces made from 10k white gold and lab-created diamonds; there are necklaces, bracelets, earrings, and rings. A bridal party—or someone looking to add some zing to their next event ensemble—can rent pieces for 14 days for 5% of the purchase price. Rental fees apply to the purchase price as well.
Consumers sign a contract that has them assume the full price of the merchandise they borrow, should anything go missing or be damaged during the two-week rental period, though renters aren’t responsible for everyday wear and tear—and Zales jewelers restore the pieces to a like-new condition once the jewels are returned.