BrazilCarnivalShop was developed in 2005 by an increasing demand of the Brazilian carnival and samba culture products all over the world. These were customers that were interested in purchasing authentic Brazil Carnival costumes, samba dresses, shoes and attire for men made in Brazil. We believe that the internet, and social media played a huge roll in making this dream come true. Brazil samba is widely known and respected and we realized that people and businesses were interested in this connection with the real carnival designers, and we would know how to connect them.
So as lovers and promoters of Brazilian Carnival traditions, we created a Facebook page in 2005 called BrazilCarnival.
and a YouTube channel with over 59k subscribers, 500 videos and over 40 million views:
These two pages would show the world (and in English) the true roots, traditions and culture of Brazilian Carnival. Every year during the samba parade in Rio, we would follow the samba community and showcase the Rio parade with a very detailed summary on what the samba queens, divas and professional samba dancers and communities in samba were wearing. Our samba fashion summary on the parade became an instant hit among the samba communities around the world. We knew we were on the right track to develop a new business: connect the designers to the dancers outside Brazil.
It was an accurate depiction of Brazil samba. With these stories been shared, liked and commented, we created an avalanche of fans and followers who started to engage with us. Our post was mainly on the Brazilian samba, with facts and stories, all in English. There is a big difference in carnival costumes, dance and traditions in comparison with carnival traditions of the Caribbean, France and Las Vegas, let’s say. We really wanted to make sure we were only posting authentic Brazilian carnival stories.
The more stories and photos we shared, the more inquiries we would get on where to get costumes, group orders, samba shoes and custom-made orders. Rio carnival for example only happens once a year on hot summers of Brazil and if you ever see the parade or “the biggest show on earth” you wonder “how can I get a hold on one of these gorgeous costumes?” The questions kept coming from every corners of the world. There are over 600 professional samba schools outside Brazil with specific show dates and rehearsals. We had many professional samba dancers or simply dancers that needed to get a costume, without travelling to Rio. We had samba groups contacting us with special requests.
This made us aware of a gap in the samba world that needed to be fulfilled and we decided to create another Facebook page called BrazilCarnivalShop
With the fashion design and product development background of Maria Flynn, we decided to start locally contacting carnival designers. It was a long road on learning who to trust with quality, production lead time, shipping quotes and getting the price just right for the international clients.
We started developing custom orders for international samba groups, businesses who needed authentic samba outfits or dancers who needed ready to ship costumes. Having back then just a Facebook page was not the ideal way to make this more efficient, so we decided to finally create our current website that would allow potential clients to browse our collection and purchase exactly what they wanted. The description on each product was there, organized by collections, sizes and colors. Our clients were also very engaged in Instagram, so we created our account to speak to them more closely:
Maria Flynn learned by working and living in the US, that quality and customer service needed to work very close together, specially in a speedy world of social media where making a customer wait for an answer it is not acceptable. We decided to add reviews and ratings; our clients felt very confident on their buying decision. Our Brazilian designers started to adapt to this new way of working and thinking and we can tell they are happy to work with us: it’s giving them possibility to have their designs displayed on all corners of the world and more businesses are coming to them every month, rather than just the “carnival season”. This created a new work cycle in the carnival studios in Rio. Carnival making was all year round now.
We noticed a few years ago that the “Carnival like” festivities were happening not only in Brazil, but in many other countries around the globe. For that reason, some orders had to be adapted to the culture of that country. Our 1st big project was the Notting Hill Carnival in 2011 and then the Saint Thomas Children’s Parade that won them 1st place. Some costumes and dresses had to have a bit more coverage, for example. Today we find samba-school like and long-time customers in UK, Japan, Finland, Australia, United States, France, Germany, Poland, Ukraine, Portugal, Kuwait, Argentina and even in Africa that has special request. There are many International deadlines we need to follow to make sure that the samba dancer will have their group orders on time due to a parade or show. Carnival is not in Brazil anymore, but the costume making still comes from Brazil.
Our 1st big project in 2011, the Notting Hill Carnival, UK:
Carnival and Samba fans have specific attire and special needs that had to be taken care of. We have loyal customers that are with us for many years for that specific reason: we know exactly what they want, and that wish cannot get lost into translation.
Many carnival designers are on social media in Brazil, and there are many designers that you can easily search for. We started to get calls from frustrated samba clients that would contact these “on-line Facebook or Instagram designers” and were not satisfied. They would not get what they ordered, the product would come out completely different, or the designer simply would not reply to their messages anymore. They were angry and we felt Maria Flynn needed to help.
This became then our essential motivation. We wanted to show that there are responsible and hard-working carnival-samba studios that would change their perception on owning a costume from Brazil. We are very well connected with the local Brazilian carnival suppliers that has a high reputation for quality and shipments on time. These designers check in with us many times a day. They feel connected and we feel secure with them. We are that bridge, between them and the international customer. We speak to the top designers in a daily basis, thanks to social media, videos and messages. Every question is replied very fast via Facebook, Instagram, text messages and e-mails. In a fast-paced world, our customers are looking for quick replies, rapid turnaround and above all trust and quality. We follow daily with the designers, check on the order status, ask for videos and photos. It really gives our customers a peace of mind.
We speak Portuguese, French, Spanish and Italian and we can relate in a timely manner exactly what our international customers wants to our local designers in Brazil.
We work with world renowned top carnival designers that services local and International the divas, queens and local communities in Rio and São Paulo. We focus on group orders and special request projects for international customers, from sketch to final products. Throughout the years we have been investing in ready to ship costumes and shoes noticing a strong demand for those dancers who can’t wait 40-50 days to get costumes made plus shipping time.
All our Brazilian carnival designers do not speak English, so we will be their right hand and connect their work to your taste. Every year we are adding new carnival designers from different countries that understand well the look & feel of our customer. Brazil Carnival is getting global, and we are discovering these suppliers after years of search.
Maria Flynn, the owner and creative director currently lives in Napa, California. She is a mother of 2 and a full-time mom and business woman from home. Maria graduated in Business Marketing and Fashion Merchandising in F.I.T New York City and worked with top fashion and manufacturing companies like Oscar de la Renta, Capital Mercury Apparel, and Promostyl Fashion Forecasting. Her 17 years of Manhattan fashion companies made her well prepared for the product development of fashion. Her last position was as a color quality control director at Capital Mercury, over viewing color and quality for their private label brands. She maintains an apartment in Rio and visits regularly her family, suppliers, attend trade shows and checks in with her designers.
BrazilCarnivalShop sponsors and supports many samba schools and events competition throughout the year. With our sponsorship we give out prizes like complete samba costumes, samba wear, shoes, sashes, crowns and so much more.
We are well engaged with local samba communities from each country around the world, as well as respected samba teachers and dance studios. They can always count on us for their needs in the samba or carnival world.
Get to know our founder Maria Cristina on this exclusive interview with Vanessa Isaac for Sexy Samba Soul YouTube:
Here you will see an interview made by Napa Valley Register that featured Maria Cristina, founding owner:
5 star reviews on Sitejabber:
We want to make sure you have the authentic “look and feel” of the Brazilian lively spirit. Our partners and suppliers are all committed to the artistic culture of carnival and are proud to develop exclusive collections to your project. In the name of all our team members in Brazil, I welcome you to visit our e-commerce website and embody the vibrant, popular, eccentric, and lively spirit present at this grandiose festivity!