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Set of paper fancy dress costumes - Playsacks


  • Object:

    Set of paper fancy dress costumes

  • Place of origin:

    Malton (made)

  • Date:

    1967 (manufactured)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Shapur, Fredun (designer)
    Trendon Ltd (manufacturer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    paper, printed

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Fredun Shapur

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

These simple, sack-like fancy dress costumes are each printed with an abstracted animal faces. They were intended to accommodate a broad range of ages and sizes, and their spontaneity and flexibility allowed them to become one of Fredun Shapur's most celebrated and successful designs. Shapur was inspired to design the Playsack when his children were in need of a last minute costume for a school event. He took a large paper sack intended for kitchen waste and decorated it with a bold, simple design. As well as the owl, pig, lion, fox, toad and rabbit in this set, also available was a bear, zebra, leopard, monkey and tiger.

Physical description

Set of six sack-like fancy dress costumes made from thick fire resistant paper, printed on their fronts with an abstract face and body of an animal, with small pieces cut out for the child's eyes and holes on either side for their arms. There are two owls which are purple, green and cream. There are two pigs which are pink, cream, orange and purple pigs. There is a lion which is yellow, orange and brown. A toad which is green, yellow and cream. A rabbit which is pink, brown and cream.

The Playsacks are packaged in two large envelopes with 'Playsack' printed along the top. One envelope contains the owl, the other is labelled 'fox' and contains the remaining sacks.

Place of Origin

Malton (made)


1967 (manufactured)


Shapur, Fredun (designer)
Trendon Ltd (manufacturer)

Materials and Techniques

paper, printed


Length: 981 mm, Width: 356 mm, Length: 108 mm, Width: 355 mm

Object history note

Given to the Museum in 1988 by Fredun Shapur [88/1015]

Historical context note

The photograph for the packaging was taken in Epping Forest. It includes Shapur's children as two of the models as well as Shapur himself, wearing the lion costume.

Descriptive line

Set of Playsacks, packaging and advertising poster; Fredun Shapur for Trendon Ltd., 1967

Labels and date


Production Note

Initially developed for Trendon Ltd, Playsacks were also sold by US company Creative Playthings from 1969.





Subjects depicted

Owls; Lions; Toad; Children; Rabbits; Pigs


Children & Childhood; Animals and Wildlife; Fancy-dress; Play

Production Type

Mass produced


Museum of Childhood

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