SATURDAY DRESSUP PARTY THEME — AUGUST 2017
When to dress up
The party on Sat 19 August 2017 is the only event during the weekend at which we ask that everyone dresses up to some degree — and even then it's a fairly low-pressure thing. The theme is not compulsory if you have something you'd rather wear (see further down) but some guests feel happier with something to spark their imagination, hence these guidelines.
On the other days you're welcome to wear whatever makes you comfortable, whether that's casual clothes or something more fanciful and marvellous.
You can get into your outfit any time on Saturday but definitely be ready by the time sun sets and the party starts.
Whatever happens, don't worry! Whether you're completely new to dressing up or whether you're an experienced masquerader, we will support you every step of the way. We even have a dress-up rail and craft tent to help you make an outfit last minute.
[Image description: a collage of cosplays including Frieda Khalo, Salvador Dali, people wearing Matisse prints, and several famous paintings]
The theme name: ART & SOUL
This year's dressup theme is inspired by visual arts — modern art, fine art, pop art, sculpture, painting, drawing, graffiti, street art, digital art. And any kind of visual creativity that moves to your soul, gets people thinking and feeling. Your chance to be an exhibitionist, an expressionist, make an impression, or for the introverts, explore your inner creative world.
"There's a fine, fine line between a lover and a friend. There's a fine, fine line between reality and pretend". Where do you draw your line? This is your chance: come as a favourite work of art, whether high or low, pop culture, modern or classic, something arty-farty or cutting edge.
READ UP ON HOW TO AVOID OFFENSIVE COSTUMES
We hope to create a space where all guests feel welcome, so please make a point of reading this article from KSL on how to avoid picking an offensive costume. If you're not from a certain culture avoid appropriating the specific dress of that culture - see ,  - as some of our guests from those heritages have told us it makes them feel uncomfortable and excluded. We may not have much Native American dress but the festival cliché of the feathered warbonnet is a perfect exemplar of what we're trying to avoid. Similarly characters that demean marginalised groups (fat people, disabled, people in the criminal justice or mental health systems) are out of bounds. Learn about the history of racebending in pop culture. With care it is possible to make a costume based on a celebrity or a character whose race is different to yours, without it being offensive. This article explains how, with example pictures.
What if I have A NON-THEME outfit I want to show off?
As long as you are dressing up and entering into the spirit of fantasy and make-believe, no-one's going to have an objection. We want you to be in your element, and if that means a different but equally fun / imaginative look, no problem.
We encourage vibrant vintage wear, amazing accessories, marvellous millinery, unique uniforms, kigus and onesies, left-over outfits from Rumpus, Nowhere and Burning Man, AP, KSL, TG and so on.
The only things we don't want to see on Saturday night are anything offensive (see above) and the kind of stuff people might wear to a house party, work do or a wedding, eg: street clothes or jeans, conventional clubwear, straight suits and cocktail dresses.
We're here to help!
Even if you only don't have much of a look sorted out by the time the party comes round, we have various activities at the event that can get you in the spirit of things.
Throughout the weekend we will have a dressup rail with various items of (admittedly quite disorganised and off-theme) fancy dress. There will also be an artist providing facepaint and bodypaint (for a fee) and we will have craft workshops throughout the weekend (free) to help you make accessories.
Putting together a great outfit needn't cost lots of money or specialist kit — a bit of imagination and stuff from charity shops / pound shops / bits of paper stuck on can work wonders and indeed that approach usually results in more imaginative costumes.