Shakespeare & Company’s stock consists of four decades worth of contemporary and period costumes, hats, shoes, masks, and accessories. There are more than 50,000 costume pieces in four rooms, carefully organized by type and color, and some by period. Costumes are not sized.
2023 Costume Rental Policy
Rental appointments are subject to availability, and should be requested at least one week in advance by calling (413) 637-1199 ext. 376 or by emailing email@example.com. Face masks and social distancing are required, and no more than two people from each institution may attend an appointment. Please note: Shakespeare & Company does not ship costumes.
Rental rates for non-profits (schools, colleges, and theaters) are $45/costume* for the first week of dress rehearsals, previews, and performances, and $30/costume for each subsequent week. Deposits are negotiable.
Rental rates for individuals and for-profit organizations (businesses, films, corporations, etc.) are $100/costume* for the first week of shooting, dress rehearsals, previews, and performances, and $60/costume for each subsequent week, with deposits required.
Selecting and pulling costumes from Shakespeare & Company’s stock is, after a brief tour, entirely self-service and the responsibility of the renter. Shakespeare & Company suggests renters bring performers’ measurements with them. Prior arrangement may be made with the Rentals Manager if assistance is desired in pulling. This service is subject to the availability of staff, and requires a $25/hour consultation fee. Please note: Shakespeare & Company does not pull and ship rentals.
Items unavailable for rent include some footwear and all high boots, tights, stockings, undergarments, corsets, antique or fragile garments, and costume pieces potentially needed for current or upcoming Shakespeare & Company productions. Holds are made at the discretion of the rental staff.
Transport of rented costumes is the responsibility of the renter. The renter will take pulled costumes with them on the day they are pulled, and the renter should bring baskets or bags for transportation. All costumes taken out on hangers must be returned with hangers.
Care of rented pieces includes the renter agreeing to exercise the highest degree of care of pieces rented from Shakespeare & Company. All costumes are rented “as is.” Carefully stitched alterations of Shakespeare & Company costumes are acceptable; major alterations must be reversed before return. Proper care of garments assumes that: The renter may not cut, paint, or dye costumes, use staples, safety pins, glue or tape to alter a piece, or in any way irreparably alter or damage a costume. Damaged or lost costumes will be subject to repair or replacement fees.
Costumes must be laundered and /or professionally dry cleaned before return. Shoes, hats, leathers and masks must be gently sprayed with an antiviral spray such as Lysol before return. A copy of all dry-cleaning receipts must accompany each return.
Rental return dates will be agreed upon by the renter and the Rental Manager and noted at the time of rental, generally 10 days after the close of a show to allow time for cleaning. Costumes returned later than the agreed upon return date will continue to be charged at the “subsequent week” rate of $30 or $60/costume/week until returned. An additional holding fee of $35 per week may be added to rentals pulled and racked well in advance of fittings and performance opening.
Payment is due within 30 days of the last performance date or it is subject to a 5% of the total rental fee every month thereafter. A credit card number is required as a guarantee, and is the preferred form of payment.