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8 Ways to Make Money with Mardi Gras Anywhere

The Holiday Season is behind us and radio stations in South Louisiana suddenly replace "Silent Night" with "Mardi Gras Mambo". Fantastic for Louisiana with the greatest free show on earth about to take place, but what does that mean for retailers in the rest of the world? Opportunity! Yes, Mardi Gras is growing by leaps and bounds and if the celebration is not in your backyard now, it will be soon.  So take advantage of a retail windfall in post Christmas sales – a time when retailers can use a nice boost.

Already, St. Louis, San Diego, Orlando, Galveston, Detroit, and numerous other locations enjoy the festivities of Mardi Gras in a big way. Internationally, Mexico, Argentina, and Central America see the celebrations growing. For many it is new.  What is it about?  What products should I carry?

Let's begin with what Mardi Gras is about.  A fanciful day reverses all the stressful things in the average person's life. Let's look at New Orleans. Imagine no bills, no work, no taxes, no court appearances, and no checks to write– because everything is closed. So now, take your family down to the parade, barbeque on the neutral ground, and relax because the keys of the city are being passed to a fanciful king that will entertain his subjects with parades.  All you have to do is enjoy yourself.

Now back to the retailer. What goods blow out for this celebration?

  1. Mardi Gras Beads
    Mardi Gras Beads

    Mardi Gras beads have to lead the list.  Everybody wants these gaudy baubles around their neck to feel included.  Throw beads are the inexpensive MOT (molded on twine) beads that parades throw to the crowd of spectators chanting "Throw me something mista".  Special throws are more elaborate designs, and often hand strung.  These come in every imaginable theme, but beads in the Mardi Gras colors of purple, gold, and green are most popular.  Retail shops sell both so include Mardi Gras beads before anything else.

  1. Mardi Gras Masks
    Mardi Gras Masks

    Mardi Gras masks are indispensable. We're not talking cheap lone ranger masks that are unimaginative, but elaborate masks that are far more inexpensive than you would think.  This business has exploded in volume the last few years.  Sure, Mardi Gras is a big event for masks, but proms, weddings, masquerade parties, fund raisers and endless other events drive sales to huge annual increases.  Mardi Gras masks use traditional purple, gold, and green colors.  Beyond this masquerade masks offer a surprise of unusual styles with room for huge mark ups.  Feather masks have size and designs that really increase the profit picture for retailers.  Venetian style masks have history and breath-taking art that even works for home décor.  Include masks in your Carnival selection for sales that continue beyond Fat Tuesday.

  1. Mardi Gras Pins
    Mardi Gras Pins

    Mardi Gras is more than a day – it's a season that begins on Jan. 6 and ends on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday.  While other retail items gear towards Shrove Tuesday, Mardi Gras jewelry expresses spirit as pins, bracelets, earrings, and necklaces throughout the season.  This is the fashion jewelry worn to work, shopping, and on a night out.  Fit your customers in Mardi Gras jewelry – the Carnival item that beats all others for length of selling season.

  1. Novelty Hats
    Novelty Hats

    Novelty hats are a relatively new kid on the block.  Yes, they've been around about a decade and started with felt stove pipes.  The local New Orleans newspaper, The Times Picayune, did an article on hats as the new hot Mardi Gras item about ten years ago and wow! How they've developed since then!  Today novelty hats are available in every imaginable theme and provide booming sales in party stores not even related to Mardi Gras celebrations.  This is an item that has terrific sales potential for Mardi Gras, and still is excellent for areas totally untouched by Carnival.  In other words:  no Mardi Gras – no problem.  Put novelty hats on the list for festivals, sporting events, and birthday parties – these are universal.

  1. Mardi Gras Favors
    Mardi Gras Favors

    Mardi Gras favors provide a necessity for Krewe members attending Mardi Gras balls. Miniature dolls, small wall masks, jester magnets, Mardi Gras pins, and pewter collectibles are a few of the items that can provide special mementos for a memorable event.  The same items serve as quality souvenirs that visitors can take home. But it doesn't end there. The booming popularity of Mardi Gras themes in weddings, sweet sixteens, quinceañeras, balls, and parties creates a market beyond the confines of Mardi Gras celebrations. Where can they find, see, touch, and buy Mardi Gras favors? The answer is your shop.  Stock these items and you own the local market. 


  1. Feather Boas
    Feather Boas

    Feather boas create a party mood that spells fun. The irresistible array of colors fits every personality and event. Standard boas are 6 feet long and the weight determines the fullness. A weight of 55 or 60 grams has plenty of fluff. What could be a more natural fit for Mardi Gras? But that's only the beginning for this fun accessory that makes every lady feel like a star. Any party atmosphere calls for feather boas, and best of all, there is no age limit to the appeal. Ladies in their red hats love them as well as girls on the way to a football game.

  1. Mardi Gras Dolls
    Mardi Gras Dolls

    Mardi Gras dolls have universal appeal on their own as well as centerpiece attractions for Mardi Gras themed events. Gift shops, flower shops, party planners, and tourist attractions are only a few of the business types that keep Mardi Gras dolls in high demand. Traditional jesters in Mardi Gras colors have always been top sellers, but Venetian style jester dolls are rapidly growing in popularity.

  1. Mardi Gras Wall Masks
    Mardi Gras Wall Masks

    Mardi Gras wall masks go home to hang on the wall as a year round reminder of a very enjoyable time. The selection offers something for everyone with Mardi Gras jesters, Venetian style masks, Victorian ladies, and old world designs. The wall masks also serve as excellent favors and their appeal is no way limited to Mardi Gras celebrations. Regardless of location, these beautiful wall masks will capture attention.

The Mardi Gras fun of New Orleans and Louisiana is too much to miss out on.  The world sees it and the spirit spreads.  Pick up your post Christmas sales by filling a retail gap with the hot items that make a Mardi Gras celebration.