Costume parties are great fun, until you remember the day before that you still haven't put together an awesome outfit. With a wealth of costume shops in Melbourne, you are bound to find something to fit the theme you're after.
An adorable treasure trove of costumery, Miss Kitty's has all manner of costumes available for hire and some available for purchase. You can expect to pay between $45 and $85 to hire a costume, and between $60 and $80 for a purchase. The hire range boasts plush animal suits, medieval attire and celebrity outfits as being some of the more flamboyant costumes. Most of the sale items are racy adult costumes, although there are more innocent options and even an adorable children's selection. The store has a friendly, cosy atmosphere with helpful staff members on hand. Miss Kitty's is located at 77-79 Poath Road, Murrumbeena and is open Monday through Saturday. With a generous closing time of 7:00 pm on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays; they are ideal for a desperate after-work dash.
A chain of costume shops with five locations across Melbourne, the Costume Factory has an overwhelmingly extensive range of costumes to suit any theme. They claim to have thousands of costume ideas to choose from. They have all the basics, with dress-ups for celebrities and different decades of the twentieth century, as well as novelty ideas such as vegetable costumes. Costume hire costs between $70 and $100, with a bond of $100 to be refunded if the costume returns to them unharmed. The main store is located in the CBD on the corner of Hardware Lane and Little Bourke Street, with other stores in Kensington, Croydon, Dandenong and Nunawading. All stores are open from Monday to Saturday, and close late on Fridays.
Cellardoor Costumes Best for those wanting to sort out their costume online, Cellardoor allows you to reserve a costume from their website then pick it up instore at 439 St Georges Road, Thornbury. Everything you could possibly want to know about hiring from Cellardoor, including information on late fees, how to book and even which costumes are currently available, can be found on their website. Typically, their costumes cost about $50 to $60 however the more ostentatious costumes are around $80. They have plenty of daggy costumes, including an 80s break dancer outfit and a pink gorilla suit.
Amazing Transformations are best for groups wishing to hire costumes, offering a discount of 10% where ten or more costumes are required. They also have a large range of matching costumes for couples. Most of their extensive range of stock is showcased online for your perusal, however there are unlisted costumes which can be found instore only. Amazing Transformations can be found at 33 High Street, Glen Iris. They are open Monday to Saturday, closing late at 8:00pm on Fridays.
Moulin Rouge Costume Studio
Set apart by their commitment to customer service, Moulin Rouge's friendly staff are happy to help pull together a costume for any occasion. Their opening hours are a little scattered as they are closed Tuesdays and Sundays, but they are happy to help with emergency costume requests if you email them. They have one location, at 479 Ballarat Road, Sunshine. As the name suggests, Moulin Rouge specialises in racy costumery. They have cute fairytale inspired get-ups, sexy superhero outfits and naughty uniforms for both men and women. There is also a small children's selection, including the adorable baby elephant outfit (pictured below). Moulin Rouge's range is not as all-encompassing as some of the other costume shops, but it is the place to go to find a costume for a suggestive theme.
A Baby Elephant costume from Moulin Rouge Costume Studio.
When looking for a costume, it can be plenty of fun to run around the city browsing costume shops and trying on novelty outfits to your heart's content. But if you're pressed for time, form an idea of what you're searching for and ring around before you go in-store to check what shops sound like they have something suitable. And of course, you should always make sure to carefully examine the hire policy and be aware of how much you're required to pay should the costume become damaged or ruined.