Post-Apocalyptic Fashion: What Not to Wear
Welcome to the wasteland: where flat black is the new black.
Although we’d like to remind you that our bouncers will not be letting in any zombies, cyborgs or pirates, this guide is more to help steer your appropriate post-apocalyptic costume away from some of the more egregious little outfit missteps. (Also see our Post-Apocalyptic Costuming 101 post for more tips.)
Nothing screams “pre-apocalypse” (or oops, I forgot to wear my costume pants) more than a pair of blue jeans. Maybe it’s the fact that jeans are so mundane and common that makes them look so out of place, or maybe it’s just that this casual denim garment is a light faded BLUE. Do us a favor, wastelanders, unless you’re doing a post-apocalyptic cowboy impression, leave them at home. If you’re going to wear jeans, an older pair of faded black, gray or brown jeans will go much better with a post-apocalyptic outfit.
Department Store Sunglasses
Nothing says you’re just a weekend warrior like throwing on a pair of department store sunglasses with your costume. This is one accessory people forget about until the sun comes out and they realize they did not prepare. Instead of wearing those conspicuously-branded, plastic tortoise frames, stick to some durable classics like aviators, glacier glasses, and goggles.
Yellow and Blue
Unless you are wearing a Fallout vault suit, or using a little bit of bright yellow or blue to accent your costume (ie stripes, accessories), try to steer clear of these two. They are the two basic colors that stand out as unfit for the post-apocalypse. It’s hard to say why, exactly… I guess they’re just too cheery and bright. (And if you go the Fallout vault suit route, try to make it look as drabby, worn and dusty as possible. Some of our previous attendees have done a great job with this).
If you’re pretending to be arriving to Wasteland Weekend after years of scavenging through the deserts, then it’s best if you don’t come in looking like you just laundered your costume the day before. This is probably the most common mistake among post-apocalyptic costumers the world over. Having a beat-up, weathered, dusty costume is what really takes even the best wasteland outfit to the next level. Shiny parts? Rub them down with an abrasive pad or sandpaper. Clean parts? Get some fullers earth (fine dust) and rub in with a rag. Worse comes to worst, roll around in the dirt as soon as you get out to the wasteland, (but the fullers earth can be more pleasant, trust us. One word – ants).
Just a special note to any burners or ravers out there: bright or fanciful faux fur is just not very post-apocalyptic. Keep it more scavenged and taxidermied with some real or natural-looking furs (or even a gutted-out teddy bear you found on the side of a road).
And please don’t wear anything with cute animal ears on top (sometimes known as spirit hoods). You know the ones we’re talking about. Please leave those at home.
Just to be clear, faux fur worn the right way is just fine. There were many great outfits at last year’s event that featured natural-looking fur pieces. But here are pics of some that aren’t appropriate for our event: