Depending on your Halloween M.O., you’ve probably either had your costume picked out for months or you’re waiting until the last minute to cobble something together with, like, a ball of yarn and some craft paint, MacGyver-style. Either way, you’re likely looking forward to shedding your everyday skin to play dress up. Because, really, is there any simpler (or more fun) form of escapism?
Unfortunately, it isn’t the social norm to walk around in costumes every day — which is exactly why you should consider costume-shopping an experience. Sure, you can order a cheap, poorly-made, ill-fitting, and overpriced costume-in-a-bag online. Or you could do yourself a favor and find a local costume rentals purveyor that takes pride in offering authentic, storied pieces. Just watch us experience one shop that rents out over 2,800 costumes!
Of course, you want to seek out the kind of place that’ll make you feel like you are the character and not just dressing up as one. You want a place like Mardi Gras Costume Shop in Scottsdale, Arizona: a family-owned and operated store that houses upwards of 28,000 rental costumes or all of the pieces you need to build your own (aka “collage costuming”).
Hearing the sound of an actual sword being unsheathed or running your hand along the weathered leather brim of a pirate’s hat, it’s impossible not to be transported to different places and times. Bonus? It’s also practically impossible to wind up wearing the same Halloween costume as anyone else.
Everything at Mardi Gras looks and feels authentic because, well, it typically is. A lot of the items belonged to real people doing real things. Those things that aren’t authentic are handmade creations using materials and construction methods that closely mimic the real deal. In other words, if there’s a costume party prize for originality, shopping at a place like Mardi Gras definitely ups the odds in your favor.
Plus, you can’t get much more of an immersive Halloween experience than taking home something haunted — Mardi Gras is believed to have three resident spirits (that they know of).
Even outside of Halloween, though, this is an excursion worth taking. Dressing up doesn’t have to be relegated to holidays. There’s a power in what we wear and how it makes you feel… and that’s true far beyond the scope of Oct. 31.