Halloween Costumes

Flammable Fancy Dress

Fancy dress is all fun and games until someone gets hurt.


We were all shocked to hear about TV presenter, Claudia Winkleman’s daughter going up in flames last Halloween. Tonight on BBC’s Watchdog, she relives that dreadful night and urges parents to think carefully about their children’s fancy dress costumes.


Thankfully, Eight year old Matilda is okay, although she has had to have surgery, but it could have been fatal. The fancy dress industry has boomed over the more recent years, with huge companies competing for the cheapest range, meaning the quality of the garments isn’t as good as it used to be.


Partyrama used to be one of those competitors. We had a huge range of fancy dress costumes available but we just couldn’t keep up with other online stores selling costumes for pennies! We didn’t want to lose the quality of the garment for a cheaper price, so we pulled out. We still sell fancy dress costumes online, made by Smiffy’s, a trusted manufacturer and distributor, and they take safety very seriously, investing heavily to ensure the integrity and safety of all their products.


In a recent statement sent out to their suppliers, Smiffy’s said ” As a responsible supplier, we take the precaution to label all of our children’s costumes with fire warning: “Warning. Keep away from fire” irrespective of the burn rate within the regulatory limit. Furthermore, all Toys that are sold within the European Union are required to bear the CE mark. This is the manufacturer’s declaration that the product meets the European Toy Safety Directive (2009/48/EC), and has undergone a variety of product tests to ensure that it is safe for use.”


Watch out for counterfeit CE marks on the labels. They can easily be faked by counterfeiters, one way to spot fake CE markings is to check the logo. Sometimes a different logo is used entirely! But if it looks correct, check the middle line of the ‘E’, as it should be shorter than the other parts.


So when your little one wants to play dress up, make sure the costume you give them meets the relevant safety standard and you keep them away from fire. A bargain isn’t worth your child’s life.