Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Raising a Girl in a Costume Shop

by Jerry Tamblyn
from the Costume Shop Mysteries
by Diane Vallere

I’m Jerry Tamblyn, part owner of Disguise DeLimit, Proper City’s number one costume shop. I started working here in my teens—sweeping the floors, organizing the stockroom, unpacking new shipments—but bought it out from the owners when they decided it was time to retire. I married the love of my life and we made the shop our own. When she got pregnant, I thought my life was just about perfect.

Funny how life can change in an instant. My wife died in childbirth, turning me from a business-owner into a single father with no clue how to raise a girl overnight. The only thing I did know how to do was run the costume shop
. So that’s what I did. As soon as my little girl, Margo, was old enough, I brought her into the store with me. She learned to count by playing with a bin of colorful clown noses and could recognize Frankenstein, the Mummy, and the Wolfman before she could differentiate between farm animals.

But as a father, I couldn’t in good faith expect her to work at Disguise DeLimit her whole life. I wanted her to experience the world in a way I hadn’t. The store must have been as much a part of her as it was a part of me, because even after traveling Europe for awhile and then living in Las Vegas (forty miles west of Proper) for ten years, she moved back home when I had my heart attack. Now she’s running the store. And for the first time in my life, I’m out on the road scoping out costumes that I find through Craigslist and Cosplay forums. I find the best stuff when I'm on the road (and meet interesting people too). I recently bought out a special effects artist's collection in Burbank, California, and there’s an artist in Austin, Texas who’s been papier mâchéing himself a full-head mask for Halloween for the past ten years. He sold them to me because he needed room in his garage!


I hope Margo is as happy with our current arrangement as I am. I'm more proud of her than she could ever know. Disguise DeLimit’s inventory is at an all-time unique level and it’s going to be a heck of a Halloween season! Assuming there are no unexpected surprises in our future…
--
October 4: Margo Tamblyn is back managing her first solo Halloween Season at Disguise DeLimit! Comment below with your own favorite Halloween costume and enter to win an early copy of MASKING FOR TROUBLE!


112 comments:

  1. The witch costume my grandmother sewed for me. I wore it a couple of years, but the last year it rained and the pointy hat didn't fare so well! Thanks so much for the chance to win!
    JHolden955(at)gmail(dot)com

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  2. I liked being a princess.
    debby236 at gmail dot com

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  3. amy guillaume lindermanSeptember 6, 2016 at 8:13 AM

    i always loved being a gypsy and using my grandmother's clothes and jewelry!

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  4. A court jester; we went part as a group of medieval characters in junior high.
    pammc008@gmail.com

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  5. Loved the first book love clothes. Would like to dress like that

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    1. Thanks, Teresa! A couple of Margo's outfits in the first book were outfits I wore myself in my college days :)

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  6. The year I dressed up as a sexy devil. Some people said I should always dress like that. I loved the first book in this series. Thank you for this chance! areewekidding@yahoo.com

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    1. Thank you, Robyn! Sexy devil sounds like fun!

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  7. My mom was an antique dealer in her younger years although at 87 she still lives and buy a antiques. She was always finding cool old clothes that sometimes would become my Halloween costume. I think my favorite was a black satin French can can dancers dress. The skirt was full and would stand out when I twirled. The best part was all the red ruffles under the skirt! A can can dancers pulls her skirt up to show her legs and sake the skirt so the red ruffles would shake too! I had to explain the costume at every house but it was such a great dress! I loved it! Then in college I dressed like Boy George! But lately I dress every year as a lion...my hair is long and curly enough to be the mane and I do a full elaborate face makeup. The kids at school love it! It is all fun too! Thanks for the chance to win! Can't wait to read this series! Pucsbride13@gmail.com

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    1. Susan, that can can costume sounds like so much fun! Funny note: in high school, my Spanish teacher needed a costume for an event but she was pregnant and had no ideas. A friend and I dressed her up as Boy George :)

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  8. My mom was an antique dealer in her younger years although at 87 she still lives and buy a antiques. She was always finding cool old clothes that sometimes would become my Halloween costume. I think my favorite was a black satin French can can dancers dress. The skirt was full and would stand out when I twirled. The best part was all the red ruffles under the skirt! A can can dancers pulls her skirt up to show her legs and sake the skirt so the red ruffles would shake too! I had to explain the costume at every house but it was such a great dress! I loved it! Then in college I dressed like Boy George! But lately I dress every year as a lion...my hair is long and curly enough to be the mane and I do a full elaborate face makeup. The kids at school love it! It is all fun too! Thanks for the chance to win! Can't wait to read this series! Pucsbride13@gmail.com

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  9. My got his Witch costume I wore for my wedding. My husband dressed as a vampire.
    moonbay7399@gmail.com

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    1. Candace, that is so awesome. I love it!! Did you get married on Halloween?

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    2. I LOVE the idea of costumes at a wedding! There's a match made in Heaven!

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  10. I loved the costumes that we made from whatever we had at home. This book sounds awesome!! I can't wait to read it! jawdance@yahoo.com

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    1. I agree, those require a little bit of ingenuity and resourcefulness!

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  11. I wish I had one. We don't have Halloween here in Australia as a kid I so wished we did.

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  12. I sewed myself a Peter Pan costume as an adult that was so much fun! My co-workers dressed up as other characters from the story. That was a great day at the library. lkleback@hotmail.com

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  13. One year I dressed all in pink,even a pink wig then tied a shoe on my head. I was bubble gum stuck on the bottom of my shoe.
    judytucker1947@gmail.com

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  14. A homemade Anne of green gables outfit which I loved. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

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  15. I dressed up as a cowgirl which was my favorite of all. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  16. My favorite Halloween costume was one my daughter chose a couple of years ago, a zombie ballerina...executed to a T might I add. It was priceless to see people's faces trick or treating.
    Awilcox1182@gmail.com

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    1. Zombie ballerina! That sounds fantastic!

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  17. I went as a sack of potatoes one year---what fun!
    suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

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  18. My favorite costumer was a Martian costume I made when I was in grade school. I used a white headband with green pipe cleaners for antennae coming from my head. Then a green shirt and pants to complete the outfit. dbahn(at)iw(dot)net

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    1. Dianne, I was an alien a few years back. I made my antenna from drilling holes in gumballs and gluing them onto the end of wire that I cut from the middle of dry cleaner hangers. My wig had so much hair spray that the antenna didn't move all night!

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  19. This is a great series! Love Diane's books! My favorite costume was Snow White. Thanks for the chance.
    turtle6422(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Thank you, Jana! I once was the evil witch from Snow White. Fairy tale costumes are fun!

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  20. Great series! My favorite costume was the Carmen Miranda outfit my mother made - complete with fruit on my head! Thanks for the giveaway.
    sallycootie@gmail.com

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  21. My favourite Halloween costume was actually one that my son wore. His Dad made a homemade Gandalf costume. I didn't recognize him! Thanks for the chance to win a copy of the book!
    karen(dot)kenyon(at)rogers(dot)com

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    1. Congrats, Karen, you're the winner! I'll send you a copy on release day (Oct 4!)

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  22. Wow this Book sounds really good. I would love to read it. My favorite costume was a dress my Mom let me use that was from Mexico. It was a gift from a trip of hers and Dads...it was golden yellow with black rick rack and I got to wear a silver concho belt. Since I was seven or eight I had to stuff the top and wear it looped with a rose in my hair and I loved it...

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    1. It sounds special because you normally wouldn't' get to wear that out. I bet it looked great!

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  23. My favorite Halloween costume was my daughter's when she was 5 -- she wanted to be a pirate princess. So, she wore her Disney princess Belle dress and wig, and carried a sword and wore an eyepatch. She was adorable! bobandcelia@sbcglobal.net

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  24. Back in the day, I went as a record player.
    cjreynolds52(at)comcast(dot)net

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    1. I would love to see that! I was a Swatch Watch once, but never a plug in item!

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  25. I can only remember going as a witch. The costumes weren't as elaborate when I was a kid. I do remember my Mom dressing our dog up as a clown every year for Halloween. Book sounds like a fascinating read.
    diannekc8(at)gmail(dot)com

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  26. I can only remember going as a witch. The costumes weren't as elaborate when I was a kid. I do remember my Mom dressing our dog up as a clown every year for Halloween. Book sounds like a fascinating read.
    diannekc8(at)gmail(dot)com

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  27. My favorite costumes for my children were the year I dressed my daughter as the Statue of Liberty and my son was Uncle Sam. I always enjoyed making their costumes. robeader53@yahoo.com

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    1. Very patriotic! They could come back out on July 4th!

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  28. dressed up as little old lady with grey wig little glasses..one of my grandmother old dresses and a lot of stuffing also her support those and shoes..then I borrowed her can and walked with a limp..got first place..I was around 10 yrs old..best time

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    1. I love the 10 yo little old lady! Sounds great!

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  29. I turned a bridesmaid dress into a fairy godmother costume by making wings to attach and accessories. I loved the first book and can't wait to read this one. Thanks for the chance to win! kimdavishb (at) gmail (dot) com

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    1. Thank you, Kim! Any time you can re purpose a bridesmaid dress, you're winning!

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    2. Thank you, Kim! Any time you can re purpose a bridesmaid dress, you're winning!

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  30. A great many years ago I always loved being a princess! Great review, thanks
    Penney penneyw(at)sbcglobal.net

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    1. Everybody should be a princess at least once!

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  31. I was once a Hershey's kiss for Halloween. It was awesome! My mom made it and I felt so cool. Chel_cbug(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  32. I loved being a kitty for my very first Halloween... teabird17 QT ((yahoo)) dot **com((

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    1. I love the kitty costume, too! Another classic!

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  33. I loved copying my older brother and going as a hobo. It was so cool following him around!
    bobntoni@aol.com

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    1. You'll find hobos in MASKING FOR TROUBLE!

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  34. I was a gypsy one year and that costume that I put together myself turned out so great that my daughter kept it and wore it last year!

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  35. This does sound like a fun series. Would love to get started sooner, rather than later on the series with a win. So I am hoping. When my son was young he wanted to be a ghost. And he could do it himself. I asked how he intended to do that. He said he'd show me. When he came out of his room I wanted to wring his neck. He had taken the brand new sheet off his bed. Cut holes out for the eyes. Cut it shorter so it would drag on the ground, and slits on the sides for arm holes. I asked 'why didn't you use an old one?' His response was it wasn't as white as the new one. I just rolled my eyes. Was telling hubby about it later that night. He started laughing. Then I ended up laughing. But it was still kind of irritating. He just said 'in the future buy colored or print sheets. We all laugh about that particular Halloween. Since then I have followed my husbands suggestion of prints or colors. My son made a similar suggestion to his wife when they married. She really got a kick out of that little story. Needless to say print sheets didn't save them from a similar experience. Their daughter made a costume from one of the flowered sheets. But will give her credit. She used an old one. Della at deepotter@peoplepc.com LOL!!

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    1. You have me laughing! I love the reasoning: that the old ones weren't white enough :) Great story!

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  36. My mom lovingly sewed my sister & I Prairie girl costumes one year because we were infatuated with Little House on the Prairie.

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  37. My mom lovingly sewed my sister & I Prairie girl costumes one year because we were infatuated with Little House on the Prairie.

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  38. I loved the first book in this series. Favorite costume, hmm, I think it would have to be the year I dressed my daughter as a forest fairy. Painted her green, colored her hair green, wove ivy around her, she ended up looking so cool.
    momzillasteel at gmail dot com

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    1. Sounds great! Did the green come out of her hair?

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    2. It took a few days and washings, it kept a slight greenish cast to it for about a week. She was a white blond back then, the next year she was a tooth fairy with pink hair, same problem though the pink looked prettier, LOL.

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  39. Sounds like a fun book! Parkeremma2003 at yahoo dot com

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  40. I dressed up like a hula girl. Thanks for this generous chance. lindamay4852@yahoo.com

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    1. Hula girl! How perfect! And you can wear it again during the summer for Tiki parties!

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  41. Love this series! Would love to have an early copy!! My fave Halloween costume which doubles as an Easter costume is the bunny suit my mom made for me as a baby. It has gone through siblings, and my niece and nephew. Now I get to use it for my first child in a few months. It will be such a special Halloween for me this year. Thanks for the generous opportunity!

    Bec
    Rlewis11797 (at) yahoo (dot)

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    1. I love that your Halloween costume gets double use!

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  42. I do remember when I was 15 years old I dressed like a cowgirl!!! Loved it

    Strgth4yu(at)hotmail(dot)com

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    1. Another cowlgirl! I'm hoping you had lots of fringe!

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  43. My favorite Halloween costume was when my mom made me into a milk carton. My friends was a box of apple jacks. It was not fun to walk in but I looked awesome. utaker555@gmail.com

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  44. I always wanted to be a ghost with the white sheet an the cut out eyes debbiesherwood50@gmail.com

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    1. You should do it this year! Even if you just stay at home.

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  45. I always wanted to be a ghost with the white sheet an the cut out eyes debbiesherwood50@gmail.com

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  46. The costume I remember is my son's Power Ranger costume!

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  47. This sounds like a great series!

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  48. DRESSED AS DORTHY FROM WIZARD OF OZ ONE YEAR WOULD BE MY FAV! THANKS FOR THE CHANCE! SHELLEY S. calicolady60@hotmail.com

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    1. My mom made me a Dorothy dress in 3rd grade just because! I made a friend turn his coat inside out (fur lining) and be the cowardly lion. so, yes, I think the Dorothy costume is a great one!

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  49. I have only dressed up one time and i was 7 mo preg my husband and i went to a costumn place in SF and it was amazing well we went to the party and everyone loved our costumn i hated it as it was so uncomforable but the party was so fun and i was glad that we won ,. We gave the prize back to the owners as it was wine and neither of us drink it and they were so happy. what a night that was about 36 years ago as daughter is 8 mo preg today and this is her 3rd which we are not celebrating although i am as it is another little boy that i see when i go back to SF and visit.ptclayton2@AOL.COM

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    1. What was your costume? I'd love to hear!

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  50. My favorite was going as a mummy! doward1952@yahoo.com

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  51. I make a great witch.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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  52. We do a Halloween event every year at my winery. This year, I'll be dressed as a queen! cheers@marjimmanor.com

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    1. Make sure your subjects treat you accordingly (or no wine for them!)

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  53. I don't wear costumes but I have seen some cute ones for little one. One of my favorites has always been when my mom dressed up as a hobo and dad dressed up as Dolly Parton.

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  54. oops I forgot to leave my email - bookaunt at outlook dot com

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  55. I'll be 60 this fall. When I was a kidlet, the whole neghborhood shared over the years a "Heckel and Jekel" ( the 60s crows cartoon) costume. You could actually breathe in that mask...a godsend for a bespecticled 7 year old

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  56. This sounds like a clever series! Babies dressed as old people with little walkers and cotton ball wigs. Cracks me up every time. konecny7@gmail(dot)com Thank you

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  57. I always remember dressing up as I Dream of Jeannie's cousin....I couldn't do blond.
    kat8762@aol.com

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  58. ---Contest is closed.-- Thank you so much to everybody who left a comment. I loved reading about your Halloween costumes! xo, Diane

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  59. when I was young,I usually dressed as a gypsy, that was always the easiest to put together. The strangest... my uncle who was visiting us and was a photographer and owned his own camera shop and he made my costume for that halloween he made me into a camera.

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  60. My favorite costume was one I made for my son. A gorilla , I made it out of an old fur coat I got at a 2nd hand store , bought a gorilla mask and he looked like a mini gorilla . It even scared him when he first looked at himself. Me I usually do the witchy woo.

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