In Partnership with Armoire.
I remember unenthusiastically shopping for black pencil skirts, beige shift dresses, and black trousers in preparation for my first job. I worked in finance and the highlight of the week was Casual Friday where we were allowed to wear *~jeans~*. Thankfully, office dress codes have evolved tremendously since my time as an analyst – but the work wardrobe still persists. If, like me, you have little interest in long-term ownership of black slacks and forgettable long-sleeve blouses, consider renting a work closet from Armoire. Not only will you discover chic office-appropriate picks to actually get excited about (like the Sandro skirt and Sarah Alexandra top I’m wearing above), but you can also rotate them monthly, or even weekly, for fresh picks. It’s a great solution if you have limited closet space or are just looking to own less stuff. I tried out Armoire’s 7-item case for one month with an eye toward work outfits and was thrilled with the office-friendly options I received.
- No due dates. Keep pieces for as long as you have a membership
- Fall in love with something? Buy it at a discounted price!
- Place holds for future pieces so your size doesn’t go out of stock
We don't like
- Everything arrives folded in the package so anything that should be crisp (like a button-down) may require an iron/steam
- Unless you’re offered a backup size (based on availability), you have to play Size Roulette with brands you don’t know well
Choose from 3 Plans
Each Amorie plan includes a monthly “case” that arrives with dry cleaned pieces you (or an Armoire stylist) select. You can choose from coats, gowns, sweaters, jumpsuits, scarves, jeans, and more, including maternity options. The cheapest plan is $79/month and includes 4 pieces in each case. The mid-tier option, which I tried out, includes 7 pieces for $119/month. If you expect to rotate items frequently, go with the Unlimited Plan which allows you to rent six items at a time and exchange them as often as you want ($249/month). All of the plans have free shipping, free cleaning, and free personal styling, if you want some extra help.
This Mara Hoffman dress was slightly more sheer than I expected, but with a nude slip it was perfect.
To get a sense of how you prefer to dress, Armoire has new users take a style quiz. I rated different looks (Bohemian, Classic, Avant-Garde, Preppy, Glam) on a scale of how often I like to wear them (Never/Sometimes/Often).
I was impressed by the range of brands offered, which included personal favorites like Anine Bing, Diane von Furstenberg, and Anna Sui. Given that this was a workwear experiment, I was pleased to see EQUIPMENT and Vince as well. There were also designers I had heard of but never tried (ASTR the label, KAHINDO, Hutch), and renting was the perfect way to feel them out. Each listing shares the retail value of the item: It feels like you’re getting away with something to rent a dress that would typically cost more than $500 for less than a quarter of the price.
Fill Your Case
It might seem overwhelming to browse the entire inventory, but Armoire’s recommendations by occasion made it much easier than expected to find what I was looking for. While I was tempted to search by favorite brands and ogle summer maxi dresses, I kept myself on track by immediately winnowing down to Work Formal and Work Casual options. Armoire’s recommendations weren’t nearly as office-dull as I expected, and it was fun to sift through funky pant silhouettes and midi-skirts.
I further narrowed my search by clicking the warm weather label, which removed wool fabrics and outerwear. If I were in a rush, I could definitely find seven great picks in under five minutes. Since I had the luxury of time, I leisurely perused and discovered I could easily fill way more than my allotted items. The challenge was picking an optimal seven to mix and match with my existing wardrobe.
What helped me make necessary cuts were user photos and reviews. What would we do without the selfless women who share their body types and stats and describe where a garment hugged them perfectly and where it didn’t fall right? I’m 5’3” so pants and jumpsuits are tricky if I can’t count on getting alterations. I read reviews with an eye toward inseam and steered clear of anything that sounded like it would drag.
Sizes fluctuate significantly from brand to brand so Armoire occasionally offers the option to select a backup size. This is super helpful if you’re often between sizes, but note that it’s not always offered. Out of my seven picks, I was provided the backup option for a jumpsuit from a brand I had never tried and seized on it.
After confirming my selections, my case arrived two days later in a reusable canvas mailer.
I checked through all my picks and noted the condition they arrived in. The white button-down was a little rumpled (if I were wearing it into the office I’d give it a quick iron) but everything else was in ready-to-wear condition. There were no stains, discoloration, or odors.
Armoire has plenty of modest dresses and tailored pants for offices that keep it old school. In this exercise, I cosplayed as someone with a fashionable job where color is absolutely permitted and an above-the-knee hemline is also A-OK.
This DVF skirt retails for $398. Let’s pretend I’m walking to work.
If you’re so eager to fill your next case that you start shopping before it’s time to order, you can place items on hold. The hold feature costs $1/day but ensures your size will be available when it’s time to rotate.
If you can’t bear to part with one of your picks after the month cycle is over, you can keep it! As long as you have an active membership, you can hold on to whatever pieces you want. Also, if there’s an eighth piece you can’t resist, you can order beyond the case’s limit for $20 per piece. That being said, if you’re using this option for more than six items (on the 7-item plan), it would make more sense to go with the Unlimited Plan.
‘Office-appropriate’ is such a subjective term. Do you work at a hedge fund? A nonprofit? Are you a consultant? A magazine editor? What one woman wears to work may be too loud for a different industry, but perfectly appropriate for her own. Armoire has something for every office vibe and you’ll find plenty of pieces that can transition into your non-work life.
Use code 1TQEUNLIMITED for 44% off your first month of the unlimited plan or 1TQE7 for 25% off your first month of the 7 item plan.