190 Massachusetts Ave.
Boston, MA 02115
Customers describe the selection at Dorothy’s Boutique as random and eclectic. But taken from the perspective of someone in the market for a sexy Halloween costume, the shop makes perfect sense. Lucite stripper heels elbow for space among fantasy wigs, eye-lash glue and cat’s eye contact lenses. Feather boas in neon colors scream for attention among what must be the most well-stocked wig department in Boston, if not all of New England. The prices are much better than what you’ll find at the mall Halloween stores, but if you are at all iffy about what you’re buying, be sure to ask about the return policy, some things are final sale only.
The Costume Company
489 Massachusetts Ave.
Arlington, MA 02474
The Costume Company offers theater-quality costumes, but even costume accessories can be pricey to buy here. You’ll find a few select wigs, some hats, etc., for less than $20, but you’d be hard pressed to get an entire costume. Fortunately for you, and your already-crowded closet, The Costume Company offers costume rentals, which mean you get a sexy costume within budget. But, and here’s the most important part to remember if you’re thinking of renting, costumes go quick. If you know what you’re looking for, be sure to make your reservation and rental plans as early as possible to make sure you get your first choice.
Great Eastern Trading Company
49 River St.
Cambridge, MA 02139
If you’re squeamish about buying used or know exactly what you want in a sexy Halloween costume, Great Eastern Trading Company is not for you. If you are looking for something unique, one-of-a-kind and clever, or you’re just browsing for ideas, come right in. Great Eastern Trading Company is one of Boston’s most affordable vintage and consignment clothing stores and, luckily enough, in the fall months the store space gets geared up for the Halloween festivities. Give the staff a basic idea, and it will instantly come up with some creative ideas for your consideration. Browse the racks; you’ll find them full of great costumes at great prices and much more organized than most Halloween or vintage shops.
Cambridge, MA 02139
Boston Costume is your best choice no matter if you are planning on making your own costume or buying one outright. The shop offers everything from full costumes to all of those little accessories you need to take your look a step above what anyone else at the Halloween party will be wearing. Boston Costume is both a costume shop and a vintage store, thanks to its partnership with The Garment District, so it is possible to build the costume of your dreams. Better still, the prices are rock bottom and definitely better than you’ll find anywhere online. Word to the wise though, those cheap prices and one-of-a-kind vintage items mean all sales are final, so it’s best to go only if you already know your costume plans.
111 Chauncy St.
Boston, MA 02111
If you are at all handy with a sewing machine, nothing is better than a perfectly tailored-to-every-curve, sexy Halloween costume and, as long as you can get your pattern and fabric cheaply enough, you can make it for well within budget. Enter Winmil Fabric. The petite size of the store belies just how many bolts of material are under its roof, and the prices are well below what you’d be paying at even a discount fabric store. Even better, there’s no need to be an expert pattern maker as long as you have some sewing skills, as Winmil offers patterns from brands including Simplicity, McCalls and Buttericks for as low as a dollar each.
Renee Mallett is the author of several books about art, culture, and New England. She was the owner and director of an art gallery and has written about arts and entertainment on a national level for several print and online journals. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.