Archive | October, 2010

So what’s your pet going to be for Halloween this year? This is the question being asked around dog parks everywhere during October. And notice, to be politically correct, the question isn’t limited to dogs anymore; people now dress up their cats, rats, parrots and any other creature that shares their home.

The pet clothing business has become a multimillion-dollar industry lately with Halloween being the busiest time of the year. Even those who don’t embarrass their dogs on a daily basis by dressing them in little outfits get caught up in the frenzy of Halloween and all the ads pushing cute (and not so cute) costumes. You can find special and unique outfits at Web sites such as costumecraze.com, spoiledrottendoggies.com (go on, admit your dog is spoiled!), and bestfriendsgeneralstore.com. Even mainstream stores such as Target are getting into the market with a dog Santa suit or elf outfit.

What really made me laugh is the line of dog clothing armoires being sold. I don’t know why I was surprised to see the extensive collection (check out www.thefind.com/crafts/info-dog-armoire). I guess if you have a different outfit for your dog for every day of the week (month?), you would need a place to hang up his clothes. They are beautifully constructed pieces of furniture and would make any dog proud, that’s for sure.

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Back to costumes. If your dog is not used to being dressed up and you want him to wear something, you’d better start now to acclimate your dog or you will be mighty disappointed come Oct. 31. You can’t just throw a cape on a dog who has never seen one before and expect instant cooperation – these things take time and probably a package (or two) of hot dogs (otherwise known as bribery or, in dog training lingo, behavior re-enforcers). With enough treats you might cajole your dog to sit still in costume at least long enough to snap one decent photo.

Besides being just plain embarrassing, Halloween does pose some real issues for our pets. All that candy laying around can be very tempting for some dogs – and chocolate contains a chemical that is toxic to dogs. Even if the chocolate doesn’t get them, all the sugar and caffeine will certainly make Fido one sick puppy, so be sure to keep your stash of candy out of reach of your dog.

Some dogs, even really nice ones, can get freaked out at the unusual looking creatures that are roaming the night. No one looks like they are suppose to and with the doorbell ringing and all the excitement in the air, it wouldn’t take much for a dog to get overly excited or defensive and accidentally nip. Be sure to keep your pets away from the door so that doesn’t happen, and let’s keep this holiday safe for everyone, even your “wiener” dog dressed as a hotdog. Poor thing!

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More Halloween costume trends

Associated Press

For the family that Halloweens together: A ghostly group. A voodoo trio. A pirate brigade. This year, many families are dressing together as a unit.

Chasing Fireflies, a Seattle-based company, has been selling more options for families, brothers and sisters, husbands and wives, and mothers and daughters.

“We have vampires as a brother and sister duo, a Greek goddess and gladiator, looks that are expanded to add in Mom and Dad,” said Lori Liddle, co-founder of the company.

Chasing Fireflies has also added plus-size costumes and expanded their sizes for growing kids.

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“We’ve sold out of every (children’s size) 14 in the house,” Liddle said. “I think the market has been pushing kids to be way too old too quickly and parents are pushing them to retain their childhood. It’s nice to let them be young and celebrate the childhood part of their life.”

Newsmakers: Angry stewards & oil spillers. In an homage to Steven Slater, the I’m-Not-Gonna-Take-This-Anymore Jet Blue flight attendant, several retailers are selling their own versions of the disgruntled airline employee or the angry steward.

“It’s a blue steward shirt with a light blue tie and it comes with a Band-Aid for your forehead,” said Todd Kenig, chairman of Ricky’s NYC.

The BuyCostumes.com – fulfill all your costume needs! version includes a plastic beer stein.

IParty has a series of celebrities-gone-bad looks that include a Tiger Woods visor with a golf club stuck through it. BuyCostumes.com – fulfill all your costume needs! features imitations of Betty White, Flo the insurance lady from Progressive.com and a “Bad Planning BP Jumpsuit,” a green costume that looks like it’s stained with black oil.

“That will be the controversial costume of the year,” predicts Dan Haight, chief operating officer of BuySeasons Inc., which owns one of the biggest online costume sites, BuyCostumes.com – fulfill all your costume needs!
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Anything can be sexy

According to the National Retail Federation, the “sexy adult costumes” are doing better than ever and boast a wider variety. There are sexy referees, sexy mischievous Mad Hatters, sexy pirates and a “Miss Krueger,” which is a sexy version of the Nightmare on Elm Street’s Freddie Krueger.

BuyCostumes.com – fulfill all your costume needs! has the unquestionably most bizarre look in their Sexy Cookie Monster and Sexy Big Bird costumes for women.

“It’s a different cookie monster: it’s flirty and sassy and a lot more fun,” Haight said.

Animal costumes

Dog as Pumpkin: Fluffy and Fido can get into the Halloween spirit. Just about any costume you could dream up for a human is available for your pet.

The NRF tracked the top pet costumes. They include pumpkin, devil and witch. Even costumes for pets are getting racier, with retailers offering “sexy schoolgirl,” “playboy bunny” and “Darth Vader” for dogs.

Do-it-yourself

In a downturn economy, many consumers would rather get creative and piece together their own costumes. That’s also a way of making your costume more unique.

All of the retailers we spoke to said their accessories business is hotter than ever, with wigs, wands and Michael Jackson gloves flying off the shelves.

“The consumer is embellishing last year’s costumes or they’re finding something in their closet and making that work,” said Mary Ginnaty of Savers, a secondhand chain of stores across the United States. “They might buy a Snookie wig, but wear an animal print dress they already have in their closet.”

And since Halloween is on a Sunday this year, many will be going to multiple parties over the weekend, so they’ll need more than one look.

“Friday they might be Iron Man,” Ginnaty said, “and Saturday they might put a chef hat on top of a regular outfit to mix it up.”

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With dozens of temporary Halloween costume stores popping up all over town comes yet another breed of store to scour interesting wardrobe additions for.

Sure, plastic gladiator sandals and glow-in-the-dark stick-on fingernails would never cut it in the real world. But the wacky retail spots can yield some surprisingly fashion-forward items. Below, a few costume pieces that could spice up an ensemble well after All Hallow’s Eve.

Bag

Bloody Trick or Treat Bag, $7.99. If you didn’t see the word “bloody” in the name of this snappy duffel, it might bring to mind the iconic hand-painted bags of Stephen Sprouse.

Batman Adult Accessory Belt

Batman Belt, $12.99. Welcome to my new favorite statement piece. Yes, it’s meant to cinch a Batman unitard, but imagine this gold belt nipping in a slouchy, oversized sweater instead. Call it “Blade Runner”-chic.

School Boy Glasses

Nerdy Glasses, $3.95. What passes for classically nerdy in Halloween costumes can be quite stylish in the real world. And while you wouldn’t want to fill these flimsy specs with a real prescription, they’re a great accessory for girls who don’t wear glasses — but sometimes want to.

Shoes
Mens Disco Shoes, $29.99. Can’t you imagine retro-loving singer Janelle Monae wearing these? I’m not sure how “disco” plays into this Jazz Age loafer, but we love its George Esquivel-lite looks.

Headband
Hippie Headband, $3.99. If I were affecting a hippie look for Halloween, this isn’t the headband I’d choose. With its ’80s-style plastic beads and braiding, it reads more Pat Benatar than Janis Joplin. But it’s a cute accessory for modern day — and can double as a belt.

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Has it been a few years since you’ve been all decked out for Halloween and that Halloween Party? You could go for the obvious sports comedy and go ”clubbin” with Tiger Woods, or perhaps Brett Favre as the naughty Viking.

Angela Lemke with Halloween Express says don’t stress out any longer because they have everything. ”We have everything in here you could possibly want for Halloween. We’ve got make-up, masks, teeth; everything you want for Halloween costume ideas, we have it here,” says Lemke.

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Once you reach a certain age, the old Beer Keg suit just won’t cut it anymore. At the grown-up Halloween parties, you’re more likely two see political headgear, perhaps even masking their true political affiliations. Lemke says the Obama Halloween masks aren’t selling too well this year. “People still like Bill Clinton and Hillary, Nixon. They are the big sellers,” says Lemke.

I know I’m really bad to be saying this but it appears that all the candy has taken a toll on the chompers of Halloween characters this year. I remember Bubba Teeth but it looks like everybody went to the same dentist as Bubba. Brush please!!

Lemke says oral hygiene doesn’t appear to be important for a certain group of Halloween characters. ”I guess if you’re a murderer or a convict you don’t care about your teeth,” says Lemke.

I would be thinking about a trip to Walgreens for some Crest Whitening Strips. Good luck in your costume search this year and finding something to really sink your teeth into.

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Right now, parents all over are getting the same question from their kids: when are you going to get me a Halloween costume? Now, you have an answer, thanks to the organizers of National Costume Swap Day. Not only will your costume be free, you may never have to pay for a costume again.

The concept for National Costume Swap Day started in Seattle, and it has spread across the country with this simple concept: you find an old costume, track down a costume swap nearby, and turn it in for an outfit that’s all new to you. The organizers of this event say it’s one of the best treats you can get this Halloween–a way to save money and save the environment.

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So, you have two big decisions this Halloween: there’s what the kids want to dress up as, and, as dads like Randy Query know, there’s what parents want to spend on a costume. Query says, “We do it to ourselves. It’s one Cinderella dress, then another Cinderella dress, and it’s twice the price. So it’s, ‘Ooh, I’ve got to have the best we can find,’ but it gets tough as the economy goes farther and farther down.” The National Retail Federation says families will spend an average of $66 this year on costumes for Halloween. But instead of losing your head over Halloween spending, why not trade costumes with someone else?

Costume Swap Day organizer Corey Colwell-Lipson says, “It’s really about bringing people together, having fun with this concept, and creating less waste, and kicking off this holiday without having to spend any money at all.”  Colwell-Lipson started up the Costume Swap in Western Washington, and has seen dozens of cities across the country follow her example. You bring in a costume, get a receipt, then use that receipt to get a new outfit at any swap event you’d like before Halloween. Think about it, for this year and beyond. Colwell-Lipson says, “You might never have to spend a dime on costumes, and they could continue to be passed down and passed down. It’s really a win-win situation for everyone.”

Organizers claim if just half the kids in the U.S. recycled their Halloween outfits each fall, we’d keep the weight of 2,500 midsize cars out of the landfill. It’s another reason behind the prediction that this year’s Costume Swap will be a roaring success. To get more information on a Costume Swap near you, or to start one of your own, follow this link.

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No Halloween costume party invites this year? Lucky for you, there is a slightly better alternative to candy corn at the neighborhood Halloween social. “Halloween has been continuing to grow as a focal point in Las Vegas for the past 10 years,” says Lark Ellen Gould, author of “The Little Black Book of Las Vegas.” But has it reached its full party potential? Not quite, says Rick Garman, author of “Frommer’s Las Vegas” and founder of Vegas4Visitors.com. “No one is taking over the casinos and creating some huge Halloween attraction; instead, they are taking what’s there and making it fit into the season.” Well, if losing your shirt to a bad poker hand isn’t scary enough, here are a few of the most terrifying trick-or-treat attractions in Las Vegas.

More here:
8 ways to get spooked in Las Vegas

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Halloween expenses can quickly add up to a frightening large sum.  Here are  some budget-friendly tips for cutting one of the biggest expenses of all: costume costs.

1. Browse your closet for costume creations. Old clothes and even curtains and sheets can be transformed into festive attire. Unworn shirts can be cut up for a sash or vest, a bridesmaids dress makes a great princess or harem girl costume and an oversized orange sweatshirt is the perfect pumpkin for your child. Be creative & browse the internet for DYI ideas.

2. Search thrift stores for inexpensive costumes and accessories. Buying old clothes not only saves money but also helps green-up the environment. Don’t forget to look for used costumes on the internet at Craigslist or eBay.

3. Use online coupons for costume savings. Sites like PromotionalCodes.com and CouponWinner.com offer hundreds of money-saving coupons for costumes, decorations, accessories, candy and more. Search the sites’ Halloween category to find the best deals quickly and easily.

Check out some of the coupons available at PromotionalCodes.com & CouponWinner.com:

4. Organize a costume swap. Get with friends to trade kid and adult costumes or coordinate a swap within your neighborhood or at your office. Not only will others appreciate the money-saving idea, but you’ll likely score a great costume for free!

5. Buy next year’s costume at extremely discounted prices after Halloween. Start saving for next year now and shop after the haunting celebration to score anywhere from 60 to 80% off of costumes and accessories.

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Let’s say you are a Star Wars fan and want to dress  sexy again this year for Halloween. The only problem is, you don’t want to go dressed up as a Gold Bikini-clad Slave Princess Leia again. That’s okay.  Yandy.com, which is better known for their risqué lingerie and intimate apparel, has a Star Wars-like costume you want this October to look sexy and geeky, all at the same time.

Called the Sci-Fi Furry costume (presumably to avoid the wrath of George Lucas) this outfit manages to make a Wookie look hot. I mean I certainly would not want to get this walking carpet out of my way if you know what I mean. The costume comes with five pieces including, “a cropped top, lace-up mini skirt, hood with attached sleeves, leg warmers and over the shoulder satchel.”

Now granted, the makers have taken a few artistic liberties with the design, but if you ever wanted to see a sexy Wookie, this would be it.

You had better be prepared to shell out some money, though, as this Sci_fi Furry Costume retails for $239.95. And if this doesn’t look geeky and sexy enough for you, then check out their Sci-Fi Commander and White Soldier costumes as well. Hint-hint.

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More than 10,000 of the Oil Spill Costumes have been sold in the approach to this year’s October 31 holiday, which Americans are renowned for celebrating elaborately.

Oil Spill CostumeIts manufacturer claimed the success of the costume showed people across the US remained angry at the oil giant for its handling of the Deepwater Horizon disaster earlier this year.

An estimated 185 million gallons of oil were spilt into the Gulf of Mexico after an explosion in April on the BP rig, which also killed 11 workers.

“The Halloween business reflects the world we live in,” said Alan Geller, the executive vice-president of Fun World. “We like to add a bit of social commentary to the celebrations.”

“The holiday is about horror, and people are horrified at BP’s actions,” he told The Daily Telegraph. “Several lives and billions of dollars from people’s livelihoods were lost.”

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Everyone’s favorite holiday is coming up and it’s the only time of year you can dress up in your fantasy outfit and not get strange looks. That’s right! It almost time for Halloween and Halloween costumes are going fast! It’s not just kids who like to dress up; adults love to dress as their favorite hero, person, or fantasy even it it’s a naughty costume.

So what’s going as the favorite this year – the princess costume! Again the princess costume wins out on the most sought after Halloween costume and not just for kids, adults want on too. It usually takes the number one spot and this year is no different.

Jack Sparrow Wig - Black

Coming in second place is a pirate costume. Jack Sparrow is still number two and it come complete with sword, hair, and sash. You can get costume accessories like the eye patch or extra knives to go with your costume, depending whether you want to be a good pirate or a bad pirate.

A vampire costume takes third place with all the gory red blood, teeth, and black cape. Twilight saga movies are responsible for this one moving up. Vampire fans want to be Edward Cullen to get that girl they’ve always wanted. Others are looking to Jacob Black costume for the Halloween treat or is that trick? Since there isn’t one many are using muscle chest shirts or a black t-shirt with muscle arms and a set of werewolf feet.

A surprising up coming costume introduced for this year is pet costumes. Pet costumes come in at forth place. I can tell you the costumes they have for pets are outstanding. You can make a German shepherd look like a hot dog or your poodle look like the Hulk complete with green hair. Of course, there is always the princess dog costume that’s a favorite with pet owners.

Fifth place goes to fancy dress costumes. That would cover the tuxedoes, southern belle, and the suave, sophisticated multimillionaire from the fifties. Fancy dress costumes are in the same place as last year cuz you can’t go wrong looking like Rhett Butler and Scarlett O’Hara.

Sixth place has held for this year as well as last with Batman costumes for kids and adults. Everyone’s hero and if you’re there’s two of you; you can have a couples costume with Batman and Robin. Robin looks just as good as a female as with a male.

Seventh place goes to the queen costume and that’s Queen as in Elisabeth, Queen of England, or Sofía, Queen of Spain. You can’t go wrong being a queen of any country or as queen of a genre.

The old favorite witch costume comes in eighth place. The best standby costume around. If you don’t know what else to dress up as for Halloween then go with the witch. The big black hat is the funnest to wear or with a little imagination it can be turned into a wizard’s hat.

Upcoming from out of nowhere is the Indian costume to stand in ninth place. Very surprising that it tops cowboy, who didn’t make the top ten this year. It might have to do with Jacob Black, who as you know, is a Quileute Indian. It’s the standard feather headdress and leather moccasins and loin cloth.

And in the tenth place of most asked for Halloween costume this year is the angel. Mostly it’s a costume for kids but sometimes adults like to be angels too, especially if they’re little devils.

There you have it, the top ten costumes for kids and adults. Of course, you can get them almost anywhere such as Kids-R-Us, Wal-Mart, Walgreen’s, and Halloween-Costume-Mart and don’t forget to include the Internet in your search for the best kids and adult costumes. Be sure to get in early or at least get your reservation in on the costume of your choice for Halloween this year.

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