With Halloween approaching, Key Note has been taking a closer look at the fancy dress market.

A recent Key Note survey focuses on the purchase of costumes in the last 12 months. While specialist online retailers (including online fancy dress shops) are popular among respondents, supermarkets and clothing shops retain a significant proportion of market sales, based on these results.

Have you purchased a fancy dress costume from any of the following in the last 12 months?

Online fancy dress shop


Other online retailer


Fancy dress shop (in store)


Clothing shop 


Catalogue retailer




Sample size: 402

Source: Key Note

Key Note also found that 30.85% of those who completed the survey had hired a fancy dress costume in the last year.

Fancy DressHalloween costume sales in 2014 were worth an estimated £64m to UK retailers, according to figures from Him! Research and Consulting. Despite recent media coverage highlighting the potential fire risk of some costumes, a number of major retailers are still predicting an increase in overall Halloween-specific spending this year, including expenditure in areas such as confectionery.

The rise in sales of children’s costumes over the last few years has coincided with an increase in imports of cheap related products. National Statistics’ analysis from 2014 acknowledged a significant, positive impact on online spending in textile, clothing and footwear stores concerning orders of children’s fancy dress.