The classic pop-up Halloween store? Oh, how we love it. We love the plastic pirate swords and the bright red clown wigs and if we can dig through a jar of rubber rats and spiders? Bliss.
But we in SoCal have a few extra treats in the spooking-up-October department. Since we live in Movieland, there are businesses around that regularly dress actors for films and plays. And, come autumn? They open their doors to non-movie people, like ourselves, meaning non-industry types can rent a costume from the same company that supplied the men's wear for "Gone With the Wind" and fully costumed "The Sound of Music."
Right? Totally. That's big stuff.
Western Costume Company is certainly the venerable of the bunch; it turned 100 this year, meaning it has seen the film industry through silents and Technicolor musicals and action blockbusters to today. Meaning you, dear costume-renter, will have a lot of hangers to push through when the company's Halloween shop opened on Monday, Oct. 1.
Nope, you can't rent the actual famous costumes -- Dorothy's ruby slippers -- but Western has loads more in its cavernous headquarters. You may come in with one idea of what you want and leave with something totally different.
A few things to note. Should you start early in October and try and avoid getting something together at 5 p.m. on Halloween night? Yes. Also? The Halloween shop is closed on Sundays. Also? The shop does offer rentals and other services during other times of the year, though autumn is certainly a bustling time for bustles and hats and gloves and shoes and vests and...