It took lingerie purveyor and Halloween Costumes manufacturer Yandy just 72 hours to go from idea to product setup on its Se.xy Op-Ed Anonymous Halloween outfit for the 2018 season. “The timeline is definitely critical, and we work rapidly on these,” Pilar Quintana-Williams, Yandy’s v . p . of merchandising, told CNBC. “We have now an ‘all-hands-on-deck’ mentality during Halloween season.”
Predicting the most popular trends for those Hallows Eve may be tricky for retailers, and filled with potential political pitfalls as Yandy found out featuring its Brave Red Maiden Costume. Fashioned right after the popular Hulu show “The Handmaid’s Tale,” the costume was yanked late last month after customers accused the company of se.xualizing “a show about misogyny and rape.”
With fickle customer tastes along with a flub generating immediate backlash on social networking, the key for retailers is speed, Quintana-Williams said, declining to comment on the Brave Red Maiden. That’s true in ramping up production and removing problematic costumes off the shelves. Yandy’s “Se.xy Op-Ed Anonymous” costume was based on an opinion piece published Sept. 5 in The New York City Times authored by an anonymous senior aide inside the Trump administration who claimed to be “portion of the resistance” attempting to thwart President Donald Trump.
Quintana-Williams said the idea came to her right after the op-ed begun to dominate this news that week. It’s now ready for purchase on Yandy’s website – taking under a month to travel from idea to consumer. “The struggle whenever we the team have these ideas is how to produce a costume that will resonate with our customers and is still relevant,” Quintana-Williams said. “The timeline is usually critical, and that we work rapidly on these.”
For some Halloween Costumes suppliers, identifying these trends could be a bit of a guessing game.
Brad Butler, CEO of Halloween Express, said buying decisions start right after the holiday and continue through March. “So there’s ample time to possess the product made and shipped using the ocean for the U.S. market,” he stated. “It’s difficult to predict with certainty what is going to be popular or trendy. If only we could,” he said.
Licensing restrictions also constrain retailers from quickly making costumes of popular celebrities or movie characters, he stated. Halloween Express sells greater than $50 million per year in costumes along with other items on the internet and at its 130 seasonal store locations across the U.S. They can travel that through making celebrity Halloween “kits” using items the actor, singer or politician may be recognized for and packaging them together available for sale.
“The thrown-together celebrity kits usually are carried out using look-a-like pieces or pieces that closely resemble something the celebrity was recognized for,” Butler said. “In Michael Jackson’s case, a sequin glove was easy oknqdh to use to get the idea across.”
Disguise Costumes, which bills itself as the world’s leading costume company, licenses ideas from Hasbro, Disney and other movie studios so its turnaround time is significantly slower. However, when 2012 presidential candidate Mitt Romney proposed to consider away government funding for PBS, home of popular children’s show “Sesame Street,” need for Halloween Costumes rose, said marketing director Bernice Nesbit. A number of the company’s most popular costumes this season are characters and items through the summer blockbuster hit “The Incredibles 2.”