Playing dress up for a party, or just for fun is exciting for most kids. Even big kids love it! So we caught up with Jayne Eastland, owner of Mr Ben’s Costumes Closet, to see what she has in store.
Tell us about Mr Ben’s Costumes Closet
I provide high quality rental costumes, as well as saleable costumes. I am very proud of our rental range and we look after them with great care. They are dry cleaned after every use and maintained to a high quality. I didn’t want the type of rentals that you see generally in the UK, so we modeled this area on the popular Angels of London fancy dress store.
Where did the idea come from?
Mr. Bens came about through my love of costumes and the severe drought of availability within the UAE to access them. I used to design my own and go to Satwa to try to get them made. However, looking for the right materials takes a lot of time and then trying to find someone that knew what I was talking about, and understanding what I wanted, was difficult due to language barriers.
Even when finding someone, I would still have to make several trips to get it right. It became expensive too. We took a holiday in Hong Kong to visit friends and went along to the Rugby 7’s, where we saw the entire South Stand in costume. My husband said; “this is what you do, so bring it alive in Dubai”. So the story began with a lot of hard work, sourcing, finding premises that didn’t break the bank and finding, plus training, the right staff. Our staff are wonderful and I couldn’t do this without them. They are well trained in this field now and they work very hard.
When did you open?
We opened in 2007.
What costumes do you have available?
We have lots!
Do you offer props, accessories etc?
We do have some props, but certain items are difficult to import. We try to find individuals who make good quality items. We also sell all kinds of accessories and specialise in costume and stage make-up.
What are the most popular costumes?
We work a lot with schools and events, so it’s difficult to say what is the most popular as it depends on the time of year, but everyone loves a superhero! With Halloween coming up, we have some amazing new stock arriving soon.
Do you cater for all age groups?
We cater for all ages from three months to zimmer-frame age. We love our customers and they are the most imaginative and creative guests within our store.
What are the future plans of Mr Ben’s Costumes?
We decided to keep to the one store so that we would be easily accessible from all areas. We also deliver and have our online store through our website www.mrbenscostumecloset.com. We can also be followed on Facebook/twitter and instagram. We will soon have our Etsy online store for our specialist costumes.
Tell us about yourself
My Name is Jayne. I have been in Dubai for 24 years now. I’m married with a daughter, Seren. We love living in the UAE and this has definitely become our home!