Mrs. Drapeau started the business in 1956 after buying several hundred costumes from an unknown neighbor. She set up shop in her home on Main Street in Lewiston, putting the racks of costumes in her garage and breezeway and selling wigs and other accessories out of her dining room. She later moved the shop to Maple Street.
1972 - 1986
Mrs. Doris Martin was the next owner buying Drapeau's and keeping the name in 1972. Mrs. Martin continued to add costumes to the collection and started working on accumulating a line of vintage clothing for use in local theaters. During Mrs' Martin's reign, she hired a young seamstress to help create and maintain the collection, her name was Diane Merservier. Diane proved to be Mrs. Martins and subsequent owners best acquisition.
1986 - 2006
Venise Berube purchased Drapeau's next in 1986. and moved the shop to Lisbon Street, taking Diane along in tow. The two increased the number of costumes from 1900 or so to its current 3500. The largest costume collection in Maine. A few years ago Drapeau's was back on the market.
It takes a special type of person to want this kind of business so it took several years (and a Novena or 2 from what I'm told) for just the right buyers to come along...enter Kris Scribner Cornish.
Kris took possession of Drapeau's on August 1, 2006 and is slowly bringing the business into the 21 century. Web site (our first attempt), email, fax, direct mail, and advertising are all on the docket. We have our work cut out for us but we're looking forward to all the fun (and hassles too! of owning and operating a costume rental business.
Thank you for taking this historical walk with us.
Please come visit us at our 20 Main Street address in beautiful Lisbon Falls, Maine or give us a call at 207-353-2216.
We look forward to working with you.