(Filed Under wholesale Costume News). During the Halloween Industry Association trade show in New York in December, BODY associate publisher Ted Vayos interviewed several exhibitors and provided the following news from around the exhibition. This company-by-company report is part of our on-going series on predicting trends in the world of sexy costumes in 2013.
Wolfe Face Art
Wolfe, which specializes in character make-up, has expanded with a new collection of T-shirts and hoodies called Wolfe Fxwear, covered in eye-catching face art. In addition, the company is also now producing a line of water-activated swimwear and T-shirts: customers can have their logo or designs appear when these garments get wet.
The seven-year-old company continues to produce its signature character make-up. Some key products are Metallix and for special effects are Hydrocolors. These wholesale for around $10 and offer 6 different shades. They also offer these in 12-packs for $15 wholesale.
As reported earlier in BODY, Music legs has launched a Zenoscope costume collection, starting with six new costumes based on characters from the comic books Alice Liddle, Calie Liddle and four others. These offer retailers a far edger twist to the costume designs of these storybook characters. In addition, Music Legs is updating their already successful Terminator license, adding deluxe costumes wholesaling for around $42.
Party King, sister company to Raveware, has launched eight new shaper costumes to the new category it recently introduced. “The only problem with this unique product line was keeping them in stock. We had so many requests for more costumes styles in this category,” said Phil Young, sales manager for Party King. The new are wholesaling for $44-$54. “We have added to the lineup, two new nurses, one in black and one in white, a queen of hearts, a pirate and many others.” The firm has also added six more styles from this collection into the plus sizes costume collection.
President Sean Monahan added, “Originally I thought plus size woman would be our biggest customer but now we have run an entire season with this shaper costume line it turns out more regular sizes sold than plus this year. Which proves that everyone wants to look better in their costumes. The price point offers retailers a deluxe costume with shaping for the same price points that they were selling their normal deluxe inventory without the built in support.” He added, “Our retailers have found that shaper costumes are bringing more consumers to the register. People want to celebrate the holiday but so not like the way some costumes make them look. Most costumes offer little to no support so the older people get the less likely they will wear a costume. We are the only company producing costumes that combines shape wear with costume apparel. THEY ARE RUNNING OUT OF EXCUSES. The word is out and every year more ladies are looking for Party King. Its fun and makes them look fabulous. I am very excited this year we’ve taken an already great product and improved the sizing and the fit.”
Party King has added to its regular costume line this year with a darker Halloween edge. The firm has taken sexy costumes and turned them into zombie apparel. Things like fairy tale costumes are modified with blood and latex embellishments. Cinderella is covered in rats and has a glass slipper sticking out of her head. The mermaid costume has a hook stuck through the head piece. The teacup party costume shows her latexed intestines with an actual cup hanging.
People want edgy, they want unique and they want quality in their apparel. Woman spend a lot of money on that dress they will probably only wear once. The dress has to be fabulous. Who wants to look like everyone else on Halloween? This year Lip Service has kept 43 costumes from the previous collections, adding 42 new costumes this season, updating 10 from the previous collection, making them edger.
Maria Santilena told BODY, “We are not just a costume company, we are an apparel company for more than two decades. If we see that woman are buying certain things in their apparel we follow these trends into the costume business. We also noticed the darker side of Halloween won out this season. Our newer styles follow these trends down a darker, edgier path this year. We had a large demand for couple costumes so we expanded this category for next year. A few of my favorites for couples are the Zombie bride and groom, Day of the Dead, Skeleton Guy and Skeleton girl. Cute and sexy but with a edger approach.”
“We noticed that garter leggings this year spiked sales 600% for our apparel Lip Service line,” she continued. “So we incorporated these elements when designing costumes like Skeleton Girl, combining garter leggings with a mini. We also knew that a mini with leggings would appeal for an 18 to 30 demographic. We did not want to leave the 30+ out so we redesigned the costume in a full length maxi covered in the same skeleton print the younger version offers but with more coverage for that age group.” In addition, She continued, “We even expanded our deluxe costumes offering a beautiful Alice but with a textured vinyl covered in playing cards and a key embellishment, the white rabbit with top hat and the queen of hearts, but without the typical bow which was replaced with a heart and heart shaped embellishment, with matching hat in a beautiful burgundy color.”
The typical Lip Service edge can be seen in their Bondage Barbie. This sexy romper is made sexier with a harness to accent the breasts and includes leggings, gloves and a pink whip. It is available in sizes XS - XL and double XL (size 14 to 16). The firm also offers such costumes as French Maid, Racer Ref, Fire Fairy, Sexy Sheriff, Sexy Elf (more hobbit style) and Viking, which suggest The Game of Thrones. Lip Service also has a unique Steam Punk costume collection, using keyhole embellishments, collar charms and pouches. There are also some killer voodoo costumes this year, adding special accessories to an already cool costume like a wrist-let with a doll chained to it for the ladies, and vest bones for the guys. We also liked the Black Widow with a spiderweb halter and top hat with veil.
The cheerleader costume is called Shout at the Devil and is covered in upside down crosses with “go to hell” across the butt of the panties. This comes with horns and pom poms. Anubis costume for men are suggested by the latest Cleopatra movie, along with a Queen of the Nile costume for the ladies. There is also a prisoner costume in black, white and orange, an Octopus embellished with rivets and tentacles that attach to the finger tips. The firm also expanded on their capes from last year adding interesting new designs like the Eagle.
The buzz around the Rubies showroom was about “Man of Steel,” which will offer both men’s and women’s costumes. The three man characters are, of course, Superman, General Zod and Faora.
Other interesting costumes this year at the giant costume firm, included Wizard of Oz characters such as Evanora, Glinda, Oscar Digs and Theodora. From Star Wars there are more female costumes including a Darth Vader, Stormtrooper, X Wing Fighter pilot and Boba Fett as well as skin suits for Darth Vader and Chewbacca, many available in adult sizing.
Also new at Rubies are Angry Birds, available in both kids and adult sizing; two new Mortal Kombat costumes, including Sonya Blade and Raiden; Halloween Michael Myers; Skylanders Giants, added in October 2012; Nicki Minaj, a music license added to the existing stable of brands which include Katy Perry and LMFA; Mutant Ninja Turtles, now another Rubies license; Smurf 2, the new movie appearing this summer; Barbie, but not for kids only; Monster High, mainly for kids but with some adult (and including matching wigs and makeup); Despicable Me 2 adding jump suits; a Batman Classic series, with looks from the 60’s that are fashioned into a high-end “heritage” line. In all, the licensed side of Secret Wishes, a Rubies division, has added more than 30 new costumes.
The non-licensed side of Secret Wishes has added 16 new costumes including a Swash Buckler and Pirate Captain.
Another division of Rubies, Delicious has introduced 60 new designs this season growing its costume collection to 200 costumes. The wholesale price points for these costumes is around $30. The new Delicious catalog was shot exclusively with Highest Heel shoes this year. Explained Patty Gatto, “The unique designs from the Highest Heel matched our costumes like they were made for them.”
The new Delicious line includes vintage flight attendants that come with a variety of accessories. There is also a nice Monarch Butterfly, an Army Girl, a Musketeer, Cheetah Cat, Sunflower Fairy, a Catch-a-Thief and a Delicious Racer. All of these costumes come with their accessories attached so consumers will get a more complete costume. The company has also added 24 new costumes to the plus division.
“Some of the most important elements of costume design are comfort, flexibility and how many body styles it will fit,” said Gatto. “Delicious costumes are constructed like apparel so they fit like clothing and can be worn again and again. We have created a large number of mini collections if our customer wants to go as a themed group for Halloween. Our costumes are sexy but maintain a very classy edge to them and distinctive vintage elements that draw your eye to the various details.”
Some of our favorites include Red Fox, Grey Wolf and Black Cat Beauty. A group of furry costumes including leg warmers and arm warmers. The most distinctive element of this group is the hooded dress. Many costume companies sell the hood as a separate component, which means it has to be worn all Halloween night (or when removed the consumer who has the hassle of keeping track of it all night). All the Delicious customer has to do is flip back the hood since its attached to the costume. Another favorite is the new Geisha, which has a very cool textured crinkle taffeta fabrication with a matching pair of chopsticks. It comes in teal and fuchsia.
Delicious also offers a higher priced, deluxe collection with wholesale prices around $40. Our favorites included the Vintage pilot costume which includes a distressed bomber jacket, a vintage skirt and edgy goggles. Also nice is the deluxe, Delicious Racer with driving gloves and the Sexy Steam Punk, with gear embellishments and vintage details.
This year Delicious has introduced 10 value price point costumes, many under but most around $25 wholesale, including a vintage sailor, a butler costume, a golfer costume and our favorite, a Rosie the Riveter female factory worker from World War II. For the holiday season, Delicious has added Frosty, Gingerbread Cookie and Elfin Magic and Mistletoe. Also new are 12 new licensed Playboy costumes including Santa Romper and Mrs. Claus, Playboy Ringleader (with old fashioned drape style skirt with corset with shrug with a long traditional tail), Playboy Vintage Army Girl, Playboy High Seas, Playboy Prep School (traditional with a new collar and Playboy bunny buttons) and Playboy racer (with playboy bunny zipper pulls).
Highest Heel, now also a part of Rubies, is now focused on “providing retailers with shoes that will sell.” According to division president Scott Gidlow, his shoes are “more comfortable than the competition. We use live models to constantly test the product and tweak the designs. Our molded comfort footpad keeps the consumer comfortable and the shoes from slipping off.”
This year there are many new styles. “The new Ravewear Glow Shoes are a big hit this season” said Gidlow president. The line wholesales from $28 to $36 for shoes with boots at $69 to $79. “No one in the business has anything like them. This time next year everyone will be knocking them off,” he smiled. The company has also added a new 7-1/2 “ heel in its Flame design, and a new 6-3/4” heel in its Bombshell collection as well. Bombshell shoes are embellished with spikes. The Glow collection and Flame heel have already booked thousands of pairs this season.
“Our number one selling shoes are the Diamond 31 open toe sequin boot and the Kissable 11 black flat” said Gidlow, adding “this shoes also sells really well in glitter, fuchsia, gold and silver.”
New for this season is the costume collection based on Iron Man 3, which includes two new female costumes Pepper Pots and the Mark 42 Suit. The Mark 42 Suit is Pepper’s very own Ironman suit. Also new at the company is a full body, Pink Power Ranger suit for adults, as well as adult body suits for Spidergirl, Captain Ameria and Ironman.
Also new at Disguise, a line of costume corsets called Fiercely Femme, wholesaling at $18, and featuring several licensed characters including Spidergirl, Optimus Prime, Captain America and Power Rangers. Also new is Project Glam Way with adult women’s costumes wholesaling for $31.50, including Power Rangers, Spidergirl, Elmo, Cookie Monster, Big Bird and Jessie from Toy Story. All come with matching head pieces.
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