Nantai Costume Company

  • Shops & Services
  • Party supplies and costume shops
Photograph: Russel Yan via Pixabay
656 Guangdong Lu
This tiny shop just behind The Bund, who also supply to the Shanghai Opera Troupe, has been based on Guangdong Lu for more than 80 years and the current owners claim that in the 1930s and ’40s Mei Lanfang (梅兰芳), one of the Four Great Dan of Peking Opera’s golden era, ordered costumes here.

Behind the counter, shelves are stacked with silk qipaos and traditional Chinese robes in a range of sizes, with children’s options starting from 130RMB; prices can soar to 100,000RMB for the most expensive outfits we’re told. While the full operatic costume is above most budgets for a Halloween one-off (from 480RMB), search the overflowing shelves for everything from elaborate wooden masks (60RMB) to Chinese style slippers (80RMB) to complement a homemade outfit.

Outfits are tailored to order and it’s best to make your purchase well in advance. Machine-made costumes can be finished in a month, but there is no guarantee since it depends on the owners’ schedule. Should anyone really wish to push the boat out, they can order a handmade costume from a 55-year-old Shanghai master tailor. Just be prepared to wait six months for the finished product.

Read Time Out's roundup of Shanghai's best costume shops here.

Venue name: Nantai Costume Company
Opening hours: 10am-5pm daily
Metro: Nanjing Dong Lu
English address: 656 Guangdong Lu, near Guangxi Bei Lu, Huangpu district
Chinese address: 黄浦区广东路656号, 近广西北路