I’ve been asked by a few readers for some tips on transporting costumes (especially large feathers) back home and decided to finally write a post on it.
Our carnival costumes have become so expensive that it would pain most of us to throw the feathers away, especially those $1500usd costumes from Trinidad or Barbados
My personal way of bringing back my costume is via a garment bag. I ordered a large garment bag from Amazon and make sure I never forget it when traveling. Some people use large trash bags but those can rip. Garment Bag Size pictured: 55″. If your wings are larger, a 60″ or 72′ bag will do.
With the wings you see pictured above, I was able to fold the wings in half and put them in a bag. I do have another backpack that wasn’t as easy to bend because of the shape but it could still be done.. and it was laid flat on top of luggage. Note: I always carry my wings as a carry on so i can keep an eye on them.
Keep in mind, the feathers themselves are flexible, it is the wired or board frame of your backpack you need to be most concerned about.
To best protect your feathers, or as i like to call them, fedderz, get yourself a garment bag. The bag will prevent too much pressure and brushing against your feathers which could cause them to fall apart. Gently, tuck all sides of the backpack into your garment bag, and you’re good to go.
Note: Customs officers in Jamaica and St.Lucia are known to confiscate feathers. You may not be able to transport yours if you are entering Jamaica or connecting in St.Lucia.
You could either lay the garment bag flat on top of other suitcases in the overhead bin of the airplane, or request for an air hostess to place it inside of a closet. (most times this will be done for first class passengers only but it never hurts to ask)
Another method could be wrapping it (which would potentially break your feathers). I do know of some people who have shipped their feathers back but that can be quite costly. If you played mas in an individual section, your feathers may be too large for a garment bag and so shipping them back may be your only option.
If you have any other tips, please let me know in the comments below. I hope my way was helpful. See you at the next carnival.
Yours in Mas,