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Entries tagged with: Shop Talk


Spotlight On: The Costumer

Longtime owner celebrates The Costumer’s 100th anniversary by passing baton to next generation  By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com (Click on image for photo gallery) When seamstress Anna White started her Schenectady, New York costume-making business in 1917, she didn’t even have the right to vote. This is something Kathe Sheehan — longtime owner of The Costumer, the very business White started — likes to point out to put the shop’s longevity in perspective. The Costumer will celebrate…  » Read more

Spotlight On: Williams Costume Company

After 60 years in business in Sin City, Nancy Williams has seen it all By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com (click image above for photo gallery) Nancy Williams spoke with a wry smile of her early days in Las Vegas, reminiscing about the late 1940s in great detail as if it were yesterday. She arrived in Sin City in 1948 as an 18-year-old dancer, thinking her stint would be a short two-week job at the El…  » Read more

Focus On: Doolin’s

Originally an equipment rental company, Chicago business has evolved over its 54 years in operation By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com Almost from day one, things didn’t go as planned for John Doolin as a business owner. In 1962, Doolin purchased the amusement supply company he managed, officially renaming it Doolin Amusement Supply Co. Shortly thereafter, Doolin’s wife, Helen, died unexpectedly, making him a widower and single father. “It was kind of rough on him,” Dan…  » Read more

Focus On: The Ballooney Bin

It’s all about balloons and the blues for Cindy Fuller By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com Cindy Fuller’s first career was dedicated to helping people. The dual career she enjoys now just helps people smile. A former social worker, Fuller rather abruptly left the field 10 years ago to open The Ballooney Bin in Jackson, Michigan, which consists of a brick-and-mortar retail store and a balloon design and delivery business. Fuller also doubles as the lead…  » Read more

Spotlight On: Louis Wittenburg Halloween & Party Supplies

Louis Wittenburg at forefront of growing European Halloween tradition By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com With 115 years of history and just four owners, the Louis Wittenburg party store in Amsterdam has established longevity and stability. However, when Francesco Tijnagel bought the store in 1988, he wasn’t afraid to take it in a new direction based what he saw as a coming trend. “In the first year of owning the business, I was talking to some…  » Read more
Focus On: Party Papers & Costumes

Focus On: Party Papers & Costumes

  Costume shop in Halloween Capital of the World makes for fun times By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com After 33 years in the party business while calling the Halloween Capital of the World home, Mary Vander Laan can say she’s seen just about everything. Vander Laan, owner of Party Papers & Costumes in Anoka, Minnesota, started as an employee in the early 1980s under the original owner, when the store was just 700 square feet.…  » Read more

Spotlight On: Shindigs & Celebrations

Purchase of longtime party business brings family closer together By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com As the old saying goes, a family that works together stays together. Well, maybe that’s not quite the adage, but quality, productive time spent with loved ones is almost always a good thing. That’s certainly been the case for the Vaught family of Nashville. Sandra and Wayne Vaught have found enjoyable, albeit demanding, second careers as the owners of Shindigs &…  » Read more

Spotlight On: Party Heaven

Being a costume retailer near major college campus keeps things interesting By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com There is rarely a dull moment at Party Heaven in Berkeley, California. The store is located on Bancroft Way, literally across the street from the University of California Berkeley, traditionally one of the most progressive and diverse college campuses in the country. “We are on the main drag between the Urban Outfitters and Jamba Juice so the majority of…  » Read more

Spotlight On: The Costume Shoppe

Minnesota store all about clowns and costumes By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com Tricia Manuel is a clown-of-all-trades. Manuel started in the clown business as Pricilla Mooseburger, a goofier version of herself, and then began manufacturing costumes in the late 1980s. The clowning around reached new heights in the mid-90s, with the opening of the Mooseburger Clown Arts Camp and The Costume Shoppe, a full-service costume rental operation. Located in rural Maple Lake, Minnesota (about an…  » Read more
Spotlight On: Total Party – Party, Costumes & Novelties

Spotlight On: Total Party – Party, Costumes & Novelties

Washington D.C.’s year-round Halloween store By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com Lorenzo Caltagirone’s transition from haunted attraction enthusiast to costume and party storeowner has been a long one. The trek started 12 years ago with a production company that eventually saw Caltagirone open multiple seasonal Halloween stores before finally merging operations to a single year-round Halloween-focused party and costume shop: Total Party – Party, Costumes & Novelties, located just outside Washington D.C. in Arlington, Virginia. The…  » Read more
Spotlight on: Wally’s Party Factory

Spotlight on: Wally’s Party Factory

Each of Wally’s 27 locations has close ties to its community By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com Wally’s Party Factory is a chain, but it’s one that is anything but big-box. The Wally’s enterprise has grown to 27 stores (all but one are in Texas), but each store has its own uniqueness to it, which stems from the relationship forged with its respective community. It’s hard not to think of Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth and San Antonio…  » Read more
Spotlight On: Beyond Costumes

Spotlight On: Beyond Costumes

Inventory includes whopping 20,000 costumes, including many originals By Zeke Jennings | ppredit@partypaper.com If Beyond Costumes doesn’t already have what a customer is looking for — and considering the inventory is 20,000 costumes, that’s unlikely — the store’s massive selection affords the ability to come up with just about anything. The history of the store dates back to 1964, said current owner Kyuryon Yuh “Yon” Zweibon, who purchased Beyond Costumes from the original owner’s family in…  » Read more
Balloons by Night Moods

Balloons by Night Moods

Spotlight On: Juneau, Alaska Part lingerie boutique, part balloon store—and everything in between   What do piñatas, lingerie and balloons have in common? At first glance, you might not think much at all. But one step into Balloons by Night Moods in Juneau, Alaska, will prove that all can be found in the store, a tasteful combination of everything from party goods and piñatas to garters and candy bouquets. Owner Kathy Buell opened Night Moods…  » Read more
Shop Talk: Pacific Northwest Costume

Shop Talk: Pacific Northwest Costume

Spotlight On: Redmond, Wash. Learning and understanding the value of community   Sherrill Taylor and Annetta Knight moved to the same Washington neighborhood in the late 1970s. The two became neighbors and formed a bond that turned into a partnership. Taylor says it wasn’t by chance — she believes it was fate. The neighbor’s partnership withstood more than 30 years of service to the costume industry. It only ended when Knight retired in 2012, but…  » Read more
Shop Talk: Party Gear +

Shop Talk: Party Gear +

Spotlight On: Sulphur Springs, Texas Small business with big heart When Thad Gregory opened up Party Gear + in Sulphur Springs, Texas, his goal wasn’t to see how much money he could make, but rather to provide an alternative for the customer.   “We are your average American mom-and-pop-type store trying to survive by creating our own jobs, and I don’t want the customer to feel railroaded into bowing down to the big corporate chains,”…  » Read more
Shop Talk: Dan D Party Corner

Shop Talk: Dan D Party Corner

Spotlight On: Cheyenne, Wyo. Don’t just have a party ... create a celebration.   Located on one of the busiest streets of Cheyenne, Wyo., the 11,250-square-foot shop with bright window displays and a pink roof known as Dan D Party Corner is hard to miss. And if you’re looking to plan any kind of celebration needed partyware or rentals, you’re going to want to stop and check them out. “Our store can customize any item…  » Read more
Shop Talk: Celebrated Occasions

Shop Talk: Celebrated Occasions

Spotlight On: Springfield, Mo. It takes a village of vendors to plan a wedding   If you’ve ever been involved in a wedding, you know that it’s no small task to coordinate everything that’s needed. Between the invitations, decorations and photographer to the dress, honeymoon and flowers, planning the event can become a full-time job for some brides. That’s why Lori Blake, owner of Celebrated Occasions in Springfield, Mo., made it her full-time job to…  » Read more
Shop Talk: 50-50 Factory Outlet

Shop Talk: 50-50 Factory Outlet

Spotlight On: Eau Claire, Wis.   A “Favorite” place both online and off   Even though 50-50 Factory Outlet was named a “Favorite Place on Google” in June of 2010, all the fun actually happens in the Wisconsin-based stores. Owner Tiff Lystrup opened the first store in Eau Claire, Wisc., in 1984 that has since evolved into a thriving company with four stores, a Web store, warehouse operations, a home office and just under 50…  » Read more