Submitted by Eliza Ramsey, Capital High School intern to ThurstonTalk
Tucked into a strip mall off Sleater Kinney is a storefront full of dresses in every color, shape, size and style imaginable. This is the home to Cinderella’s Closet, a not for profit business built upon the goal of giving women of all ages their fairytale experience. This alternative dress shopping option is an opportunity to find unique, beautiful, and affordable gowns for any special event.
Started in 2009, with only 30 dresses, today Cinderella’s Closet is run by Lori Kenyon and Mary Ann Detzler. Cinderella’s Closet rents dresses, shoes, jewelry and other accessories. The mission behind the organization is to help girls and women feel beautiful and realize their self worth. Staffed by volunteers who are called Fairy Godmothers, Cinderella’s Closet draws strong inspiration from it’s fairytale namesake, and is open to all.
The shop now has close to 2000 dresses and is constantly growing. “Every day is like Christmas in here because we’re always getting new dresses donated,” says Kenyon. Overtime Cinderella’s Closet has to retire many of the most popular dresses, because wear and tear starts to build up, though these dresses are worn and appreciated by many before they are taken out of circulation.
“Every dress has a story behind it, and what’s really great is that these dresses are worn many times instead of living in the back of a closet,” says Kenyon. Cinderella’s Closet is always looking for more donations, especially of plus-sized dresses.
The shop is well organized, separated by length, size and price. The dresses range from simple to glittery glamorous, including some of the latest fashions and some more rare vintage styles. Dresses are rented out for two weeks at a time and cost between $40-$60. Upon return the dresses are dry cleaned and returned to the racks so they may be rented and enjoyed again.
Capital High School Junior Alison Kweciak found her homecoming dress at Cinderella’s Closet, “I went there because I didn’t want to spend a couple hundred dollars on a dress that I was going to wear for a couple hours,” says Kweciak. “I went in and found one I really liked, and my mom was really happy too.”
While activity in the store usually heightens around the time of high school dances, especially prom, Cinderella’s Closet also rents a fair number of their dresses out for military balls. “There is one about every month, and that community is really starting to figure out what we do,” says Kenyon.
Cinderella’s Closet also supports other not for profits in the area by providing dresses for charity galas.
If you’re looking for a beautiful and low cost dress for your next school dance or formal event, stop by and visit! The store is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoons, and the volunteer Fairy Godmothers will be waiting to assist you in any way.
Cinderella’s Closet is an easy, quality dress shopping alternative, with it’s selection of gorgeous, unique gowns.
“We are here to support the community so everyone can have their fairytale experience–whether you’re a foster child or a doctor’s child,” says Kenyon.
719 Sleater Kinney Road SE
Lacey, WA 98503