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Garage Sales, Hand Made + Amazon

Burning Man Costumes on a budget - how all my Burning Man outfits were from garage sales, hand-made, or from Amazon, with Burning man outfit tips for you too!

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(Final Up to date On: October 1, 2018)

Burning Man costumes are infamous for being indulgent, elaborate, barely extreme, sometimes gaudy, and ALWAYS costly…. that’s, apart from mine (though they have been nonetheless all of these different phrases, and extra).

Though continuously tempted by the beautiful $700 light-up fur jackets, $100 mesh and sequin bodysuits, $200 buckle platform boots, and all different usually superior Burning Man-esque gadgets I see being bought at festivals in all places, I needed to (just about bodily) restrain myself from spending hundreds on costumes for Burning Man.

And let me inform you, it’s lots more durable than it appears. The truth that most issues you may ever need can be found at your fingertips by way of on-line buying, mixed with WAY too many superior and foolish outfit concepts, comes an ideal concoction for by chance dropping a pair grand to look superior out on the playa. However, it doesn’t need to be that method!

I used to be on a little bit of a price range, so I used to be decided to thrift my coronary heart away and repurpose previous issues to make epic Burning Man costumes for my first Burn this yr. To be completely actual and put all playing cards on the desk, all my Burning Man costumes have been issues I’ve amassed from storage gross sales through the years, previous costumes/rags/random stuff in my home I repurposed or retrieved from the ends of drawers, or gadgets from Amazon I used to make up my last requirements (all linked under – I’m responsible of on-line shoppping  too!).

Burning Man Costumes on a budget - how all my Burning Man outfits were from garage sales, hand-made, or from Amazon, with Burning man outfit tips for you too!

My Garage Sale Habit – Turned – Burning Man Fever

Let me begin from the start. My mum and I are die-hard storage salers, getting up early every weekend to peruse the undesirable leftovers of many residents in our space of South Orange County to seek out our personal treasure. And let me inform you – we do. I’ll give a lot of the credit score to my mother on this one, however you greatest consider that she/we’re frequenting the ‘fill a bag for $5’ gross sales, lapping up the final offers of fascinating property gross sales, and browsing by means of piles and piles of garments strewn throughout driveway after driveway on brisk Saturday mornings.

I’ve recognized that I needed to go to Burning Man, properly, principally perpetually. And by endlessly, I imply at the least 5-6 years, if no more, and was extra critical about it within the final Four. Due to abroad work I had for the previous Four summers, I used to be unable to get again to the states in time for Burning Man. However this doesn’t imply that I wasn’t undoubtedly positive that I might find yourself there quickly, and commenced extra intently analyzing typical Burning Man style, protecting my eyes out in outlets, and storage saling like a maniac each time I used to be house in California.

I’m already a really avid festival-goer, so whereas accumulating pageant outfits throughout these years, I slowly started accumulating issues I deemed extra ‘burner-y.’ I really feel like I had been purchasing for Burning Man for 3 rattling years by the point the even truly got here… however, you greatest consider I used to be prepared!

I lastly deliberate my life round being residence for Burning Man this yr, and located a ticket. This was principally the second my years of storage gross sales had culminated to! In the course of the week earlier than the Burn, I went wild with scissors, stitching kits, and scorching glue weapons, and let my creativity movement prefer it by no means had earlier than.

However earlier than I present you the outcomes, I’ll break down a feminine burning man costume into the elements that I’ve discovered it to usually include. Now keep in mind that you could put on completely something at Burning Man (radical self-expression, duh – learn extra concerning the ten rules right here and about Burning Man right here), however that is what I discover the overall development of BM trend to be, the best way it has come to exist at this time.

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Elements of Feminine Burning Man Costumes, Based on Me:

Head: Goggles, extraordinarily giant or elaborate headpiece of any variety, bedazzled or adorned pilot hat or prime hat, colourful wig, and so on.

Hair: Braids. 2+ french braids, typically with colourful material, yarn, or hair braided into it. Alternatively many ladies get their complete head achieved with small colourful braids (it’s exhausting/unimaginable to scrub hair, and playa mud provides you dreads).

Face: sun shades, tribal paint, well-stuck gems or glitter, flash tattoos

Neck: Goggles (on neck or head) bandana/respiration masks for storms, extraordinarily chunky jewellery

Physique: Principally as little as potential 😛 Excessive waisted swim bottoms/underwear/lingerie, one-piece swimsuits/bodysuits, pasties, glorified bra or bralette-type gadgets, particularly in the event that they’re made from chains, beads, gems, or sequins

Round Physique: Something and every little thing flowy, wavy, and glossy. Parasols, followers, and so forth as properly.

Arms: Lengthy gloves (mesh/shiny/leather-based), flash tattoos or physique paint

Waist/again: Utility belt, fanny pack, backpack for storage

Legs: tights (patterned, fishnet, and so on), lengthy socks, lengthy mesh stockings

Ft: The chunkiest boots/platforms potential, fight boots, lace-up boots, something extreme

Principally, I’ve concluded that, at Burning Man, you put on as a lot as potential in your extremities (loopy headdress, large goggles, large boots, gloves) and as little as potential on the within (bikini and pasties). It’s fairly hilarious, actually, however it’s what it’s. At the very least the chunky boots and gloves assist towards the mud, and the bikini is nice within the warmth (See, they do serve some sort of function)!

My Burning Man Costumes

I didn’t come throughout any tremendous fancy boots or notably attractive lingerie like lots of these Burner babes on the market, however I did what I might. Right here is how I appeared every day with a complete breakdown of every piece of my outfit, fitted to burners on a price range, artful thrifters, and artistic minds, and even a few of you Amazon-Prime-a-holics on the market!

Burning Man Costume 1: Chanelling my internal Egyptian Princess… or one thing like that

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So I hardly took any photographs on this present day unfortunely… in all probability as a result of it wasn’t my BEST costume, however it was enjoyable nonetheless (and I look foolish however what’s new). Let’s break it down:

Feather headdress: I made this one from my winter formal queen tiara from highschool (discovered behind my closet), and feathers from a super-extra showgirl hat that I discovered on the property sale of a theater performer. The lengthy feathers have been caught in a sutan-type hat, however I plucked them out, made positive they have been sturdy (not moop-y!), and scorching glued them to a bit of card that I glued to the tiara. Viola!

Cleopatra Necklace: Garage Sale

Tie-Dye Goggles: Amazon! Additionally they apparently glow at the hours of darkness. Discover them right here

 Gold Velvet Leotard: Zaful – ordered off this low cost trend web site for an additional pageant and located it higher used right here! See it right here

Leather-based Utility Waist Pack: Amazon – my favourite buy. Just like this one right here.

Fishnet Fingerless Gloves: Amazon – I obtained a pack of 6 colours. Get them right here.

Gold Waist Chain: this one was from a random mall stand Four-5 years in the past. Nonetheless kickin’!

Lace-up Boots – Discovered at a storage sale for $15, they usually’re Steve Madden. Sure, please!

Thigh-high white stockings: Amazon – $6. See them right here. 

Burning Man Costume 2:  Steampunk Ring Chief-esque sort state of affairs

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Prime hat: From my costume trunk; in all probability a part of a fancy dress once I was in center faculty 😛

Goggles: Once more, Amazon! Discover them right here

Sun shades: I truthfully don’t keep in mind, however they’re kinda like these on Amazon

Bandana: Someplace in my closet

Unicorn Necklace: a BM present 🙂

Black plain bathing go well with prime: Garage sale

Chain-link black belt/prime/no matter you need it to be: Garage sale

Pink Sequin Suspenders: From a childhood costume, someplace within the costume trunk

Black fishnet fingerless glove: Similar 6-pack of gloves from above! Get them right here.

Black rhinestone fanny pack: Have had it for years and it has been with me via dozens of nations and festivals! I feel I acquired it from a random retailer in New York, years in the past. This one is pretty comparable, although.

Purple tutu: Garage sale!

Pink fishnets: backside of my costume drawer, in all probability from my highschool days (typically, not eliminating issues can come in useful!)

Black fur snow boots: Garage sale, $10. Columbia model 🙂 SUCH a steal – they really feel such as you’re strolling on a tempur-pedic mattress, and the space-like design goes completely on the playa!

Burning Man Costume three: Jungle Kween

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Flower Headdress: I had this inredibly tangled fishing string of faux flowers sitting in my storage for years from a university sorority occasion. It was past hope of being untangled and subsequently principally ineffective, however earlier than Burning Man I noticed it with completely new eyes! I used a bit of thick wire I acquired from Michael’s and wrapped the tangled flowers round it, gluing them in locations so it will sit correctly. I added in a battery-powered string of lights from Amazon, and viola!

Flash Tattoo – I discovered some flash tattoos at a storage sale within the week main as much as Burning Man, and purchased a set on Amazon too. I gave them out as presents – however I stored this badass eye for myself 😉

Blue Braids – I acquired my hair braided on the “Bitchin Braid Camp” on the burn! Because of these pretty women for serving to me tame my dreads! 😛

Silky Zebra Bandana – storage sale, years in the past, plucked from the closet

Chunky Necklace – purchased by my grandmother in Thailand 🙂

Inexperienced Two-Piece suspender set – Purchased on Zaful – test it out right here

Leopard trailing items/cape factor (no matter you need to name it!) – I minimize lengthy strips out of a leopard scarf I purchased in South Africa for Afrikaburn (see the profile image on my instagram). I tied them in various lengths to the suspender straps of my two-piece go well with above, and it turned out wanting like this! Every thing is extra enjoyable with one thing flowy behind you, particularly on the burn 😛

Colourful tights – storage sale (everybody stated it seemed like I used to be bruised – however I used to be going extra for the jungle look :P)

Lace-up Boots – once more, storage sale steal.

Burning Man Costume #Four: Burner Starship Commander Woman

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Captain Hat: My dad’s previous American Airways pilot hat! He stated he doesn’t thoughts if I bedazzle it, however I needed to maintain it OG for this burn 😛

Furry blue goggles: Received them in Cape City earlier than Afrikaburn final yr. They’re identical to these.

Shiny face glitter: storage sale (the identical sale I received the feathers in my first outfit and the headpiece within the subsequent – it was a very good one!)

Shoulder/Collar/Cape Piece: This one was a doozy… let me attempt to clarify the randomness that went on to create this… I hope it makes some type of sense!

So, I took some additional previous shoulder pads I had laying round, and sewed/glued two and two collectively, layered slightly bit so the decrease one caught out a bit extra. I discovered an previous silver belt from a storage sale and minimize it up into strips of silver. I additionally discovered an previous velvet collar in my costume trunk from a cat costume once I was in all probability about eight.

I sewed the silver belt to the shoulder pads on both sides, and in addition to the cat collar in order that I might fasten the collar round my neck and the silver belt would stretch out throughout my shoulder and attain the shoulder pads.

To maintain the shoulder pads in place, we (my mum + I – she was the perfect to assist me make outfits!) ended up slicing some strips out of previous tights (to type like a tube), and stitching one alongside every backside seam of the shoulder pads in order that I might put my arms by means of them and maintain the shoulder pads (er… go well with of armor) upright.

Subsequent, we discovered a double layered blue flowy skirt that we obtained from a storage sale, and punctiliously reduce it alongside the seams to make two even-sized items containing a strip of chiffon and a strip of the heavier backside layer, related on the prime seam. I bunched them up a bit bit and sewed one on both sides between the 2 shoulder pads.

Lastly, I discovered mardi gras beads from storage gross sales/costume trunk, and sewed strips onto the top of the shoulder pads so they might look type of like commander armor/pads. I sewed the final bits of the silver belt onto the highest of the shoulder pads, and I had myself a bizarre, fantastic, unusual, random, and superior little outfit piece!! I want I obtained nearer up pictures of it – it was tremendous cool. Perhaps I’ll need to put on it once more!

Shiny silver gloves – Amazon! These are them.

Black bralette prime – storage sale, consider it or not.

Black + Silver Belt – my senior winter formal belt from highschool.

Excessive waisted velvet bottoms – truthfully a pair of previous ladies’s measurement giant underwear from Ross. I obtained a two-pack for about $eight, and one way or the other they’re completely good pageant put on!

Excessive black sheer socks – discovered on the backside of the sock drawer

Fur boots – once more, storage sale steal.

Burning Man Costume #5: Mermaid Goddess

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Unusual white sequin headdress with asymmetrical pearls – GARAGE SALE! This was from the property sale of a theater performer who had made this by hand. Fairly unimaginable.

Purple/Pink Wig – leftover from a fancy dress in school. No concept the way it nonetheless fell correctly.

Pink Reflective Sun shades – these right here from Amazon

Mermaid Cape – repurposed little women’ little mermaid costume/gown from a storage sale.

The cape was a gown with sleeves and a mermaid tail. However, I reduce the sleeves off, sewed it up, fixed velcro to the purple sequin bit that might go throughout the chest, and put it round my neck. The remainder of the gown and mermaid tail then fell behind me as an ideal mermaid cape!

Shell Flash tattoo – storage sale

Shell Bra – very proudly made myself utilizing shells collected on my travels scorching glued to an previous pink bra!

Pink high-waisted wetsuit bottoms – discovered by mum at a storage sale!

Purple + Pink Garter – borrowed from a good friend at camp to assist hold my stockings up, and ended up including significantly to the outfit!

White Excessive Stockings: Once more, Amazon – $6. See them right here. 

Boots: Similar because the previous few days – storage sale discover.

‘Bubbles’ Umbrella – I purchased a ton of white balloons at Michael’s and wired them to my umbrella to seem like the mermaid’s undersea bubbles. It was an amazing prop, and the balloons didn’t fall off because of the wiring!

Night time Time Burning Man Costumes/Additional Thrifty Goodness


Though I used to be there 7 days, the remainder of my Burning Man costumes have been principally comprised of different epic, loopy patterned, usually-an-old-grandma’s clothes gadgets. I didn’t get many photographs aside from these 5 days, however I’ve a couple of remaining ideas + tales to go away you with:

MASSIVE fur coat – discovered about Four years in the past at a storage sale for $10. All the time knew Burning Man can be JUST the place 😉

Little leather-based multi-pocketed backpack – storage sale

Scuba Mark + Snorkel – this was a humorous concept I had earlier than Burning Man to truly use scuba goggles as my Burning Man goggles and to maintain the snorkel hooked up for comedic/ironic impact (given the depths of the music, the desert, and so forth…).

Individuals drastically loved once I would come swimming as much as them on the dance flooring or randomly breathe out of my snorkel. It was hilarious and added to the perfect sort of weirdness that’s Burning Man. However the subsequent day, I acquired one of many highest compliments of my entire week.

Somebody turned to me and stated, “You know what, I really thought I had seen it all at Burning Man over the years. I’ve seen the strangest shit, the weirdest costumes, and honestly just about everything you could imagine. But this is honestly the first time I have seen someone with a snorkel and scuba mask, and it’s hilarious. I love it.”

It principally made my whole day to be informed I used to be the primary individual at Burning Man to do one thing bizarre, and I’ll treasure it for the remainder of time! 😛 So principally this implies you possibly can steal all my concepts apart from this one – I contemplate it my trademark and can carry it out each yr.

Properly, that’s all for now! As I edit extra pictures from the week I’ll add some additional ideas for Burning Man costumes. Make certain to maintain an eye fixed out on my Fb Web page for my Burning Man album popping out very quickly.