New Orleanians will find any reason to put on some gold lamé pants, slap on a little face paint, and top it with a wig. This is a city of individuals who are characters, and we still find it perfectly acceptable to embrace all kinds of masks throughout the year. Aside from the obvious Mardi Gras and Halloween, New Orleans hosts some kind of festival — “official” or otherwise — every single month, and the locals consider football games and even memorials just as valid costume occasions as any holiday. Here are some of our favorite places in NOLA to find all of your costume needs for any occasion.
1. Fifi Mahony’s | 934 Royal St.
No Halloween costume is complete without a wig, and Fifi Mahony’s is the best place to get one. Since 1997, this establishment has been expertly fitting artistically crafted wigs based on their customers’ costuming needs. Whether you need a wig for Halloween or just want to rock one for your French Quarter adventures, you’re sure to find something at this local shop.
2. Uptown Costume and Dancewear | 4326 Magazine St.
Sandwiched between one of the city’s best oyster restaurants (Casamento’s) and a throng of antique malls and women’s retailers, Uptown Costume and Dancewear might just be the most comprehensive costume shop in the city. With a wide variety of pretty much everything, Uptown Costume should be your first stop when shopping for essentials.
3. Southern Costume Company | 951 Lafayette St.
Look like you’ve stepped straight from the silver screen in a costume rented from Southern Costume Company. Their 9,000-square-foot warehouse is brimming with outfits and accessories straight from the sets of movies filmed right in New Orleans. If you’d rather be original, they also offer custom costume creation services, tailoring services, and supplies.
4. Miss Claudia’s Vintage Clothing & Costumes | 4204 Magazine St.
Miss. Claudia’s combines my three favorite things to shop for in one place: secondhand clothes, vintage clothes, and of course, costumes. It’s a prime example of the colorful local shops that dot Magazine Street, and, with its bright pink paint job, this goldmine of fashion goodies is just as bubbly and bold as Miss Claudia herself.
5. Nikki’s French Quarter Halloween Store | 107 Chartres St. B
The name seems to say it all, but Nikki’s is so much more than your average Spirit Halloween pop-up. This shop is quite literally jam-packed with anything costume-related you might need, whether you’re starting from scratch or need something in a bag and ready to go for that night. Let’s face it, sometimes you desperately need a pair of vampire fangs and a fluorescent blue wig at 11 p.m., and fortunately, Nikki’s is there every day from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. to rescue you.
6. Funky Monkey | 3127 Magazine St.
Funky Monkey is wonderful for many different reasons. While they always offer a smaller selection of costumes and accessories alongside their usual resale boutique items, when major costuming seasons roll around, the shop becomes a treasure trove of unique items. Located on Magazine Street, it’s central to lots of other great shopping and local restaurants. I especially love the shoes, accessories, and vintage ball gowns that Funky Monkey gets in.