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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Pulse 8 2008

The theme for Pulse 8's 2008 presentation is "Marrakesh"; check out the teaser on Pulse 8's website.

I can see lots of ornate decoration, jewled toned costumes in designs of golds, blues, purples and men in fez hats.....much like the Arabian costumes Sonia Mack is renowned for. I hope Pulse 8's design teams does a very good job with this theme!

Karabana's New Blog

Moca Gyrl aka Karabana aka Kara has started a new blog with Caribana and Carnival in mind. The blog kicks off with a review, complete with photographs, of Callaloo's launch this weekend. I am totally loving Trini in Toronto's intro and the recap of each costume. Check out the blog for costume pics and I am looking forward to much more coverage for upcoming launches and Caribana.

Neckelmann's Upgrade!

I thought I had seen it all when Neckelmann's brought their Carnival Line of costumes which apparently came to fruition because of "a result of many years of providing the costumes to many International and American carnival bands" as per their website. However when one can now purchase a costume complete with headpiece AND back pack with the click of one's mouse, I think they have reached the penultimate in the business service they provide to these International and American Carnival Bands.

No, these costume photos are not from a Carnival band that has just launched, in fact these are not even listed as "Carnival" costumes at all but they are available for purchase online at Neckelmann's and they look very much like a costume you would see in some of the Carnival bands:

Prices for pre-fabricated costumes are not cheap however (which can possibly account for the spiraling costume prices maybe?) at between $260.00 to $495.00US nor do they come in "plus" sizes as the belts measure 32 inches and the bra goes up to a C cup. Of course this is purchasing the costume directly off the website but it is very well known that Neckelmann's also does custom costume orders in larger quantities and they can do variation in colour, design and sizes.

I wrote about my feelings on the whole issue of pre fabricated costumes in a previous post called "The Costume Conundrum" and you can check out the article to see one very popular Neckelmann's costume that was the hottest section in Harts that year......2002 I believe. Local band leaders are now much more aware that the "secret" is out and I have not been able to readily identify a Necklemann's costume for the last few Carnival seasons, Harts and Poison being the bands where you could have easily seen a few Neckelmann's costumes in the past. Now there are rumours of costumes being made in China and India on the cheap, the hallmark being lavishly beaded bras and belts that make locally made costumes look "cheap" by comparison.

Albeit I have yet to find a website where you can allegedly purchase these costumes from China as easily as you can purchase one from Neckelmann's, I do believe that many costumes do indeed come directly from a factory in Beijing hence the sizes for costumes like Small, Medium Large and Extra Large instead of actual bra and belt sizes. One day I might accidentally stumble upon said same website but until then I give Neckelamnn's "props" for the upgrade and new products now available for purchase as they are keeping up with the trends. Hey, if costume prices keep going up all I need are 19 people to place my order for Carnival costumes and I can bring out a mini band of my own with some hot costumes complete with front line and back line options!
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