In short, wear festive attire in traditional colors: purple, green, and gold for Mardi Gras in New Orleans.
Comfortable shoes are essential for walking and standing. Layered clothing is advisable for unpredictable February weather.
Accessories like masks, hats, and bead necklaces enhance the celebratory vibe but always prioritize comfort and safety. Mardi Gras outfits for ladies and outfits for gents are about showcasing your creativity.
So, let’s explore all the different ways you can achieve this. And remember, the possibilities are literally limitless.
👟 Dressing for Mardi Gras Parades
Comfortable Parade Attire
COMFORT IS KEY. You’ll likely be standing or walking for long periods, so choose comfortable clothes that allow for freedom of movement.
Opt for lightweight fabrics like cotton or linen, and consider wearing layers to adapt to changing temperatures.
Stick to the Mardi Gras color theme – purple, green, and gold, to blend in with the festive environment. If you want to elevate your outfit, accessorizing with beaded necklaces, masks, or a festive hat can add flair without compromising comfort.
Footwear for Parade Walking
Opt for comfortable shoes with good arch support, such as sneakers or well-fitted walking shoes, as you’ll be on your feet for extended periods.
Avoid heels or uncomfortable dress shoes that can cause discomfort or even injury. Consider wearing waterproof shoes or boots for added protection if rain is expected.
Being prepared for any weather conditions during Mardi Gras parades is essential. Check the forecast ahead of time and dress accordingly.
In cooler weather, wear layers, such as a lightweight shirt, a sweater, and a jacket. You can adjust if needed.
If rain is in the forecast, pack a lightweight raincoat or poncho that can easily fit in your bag.
Remember to wear sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat for protection if the sun shines.
🎭 Accessorizing for Mardi Gras
Masks are a quintessential Mardi Gras accessory. You can find masks in various styles, colors, and materials, so there’s a perfect option for everyone.
When selecting a mask, consider how it fits in with your overall outfit and how comfortable it is to wear for extended periods.
Pro Tip: The key is complementing your ensemble and showcasing your personality through your mask choice.
Picking the Right Bag
A practical and fashionable bag is essential for carrying your belongings during the festivities.
Fanny packs are a popular choice because they provide hands-free convenience and can add a fun element to your outfit.
If you prefer a more traditional bag, opt for a crossbody bag or a small backpack that can securely hold your items without detracting from your costume or outfit.
Your bag should be both functional and fashionable for the perfect Mardi Gras accessory.
Throws are the trinkets, beads, and other items tossed by parade participants to the crowd. They are a significant part of the Mardi Gras experience, and having a better understanding of them will enhance your enjoyment.
Collecting throws, such as beads and boas, can be a fun challenge, and they also make for memorable keepsakes.
Mardi Gras beads come in many shapes, sizes, and colors; the more unique beads are highly sought after. Check out how to get beads at Mardi Gras for tips on collecting these coveted treasures.
🎨 Color Palette of Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras is a vibrant and lively event adorned with eye-catching colors that encapsulate the spirit of the celebrations. The traditional color palette for Mardi Gras consists of three main hues: purple, green, and gold.
These carnival colors each hold a significant meaning and have been associated with Mardi Gras since 1982. So, when you decide to attend the festival, it’s essential to know what the Mardi Gras colors mean and how to incorporate them into your attire.
Feel free to mix and match clothing items and accessories with these bright hues. For instance, you might opt for a purple shirt or blouse paired with green pants or a skirt, gold accessories like bangles and necklaces, or even a flashy gold belt.
Don’t be afraid to go bold with your outfits, as Mardi Gras is all about self-expression and having a good time.
In addition to the main palette, others might incorporate variations of these colors, such as shades of purple, green, and even yellow.
This can help inject even more personality into your attire and make you stand out from the crowd. Just remember to keep the focus on the three key colors of Mardi Gras: purple, green, and gold.
👑 The Fun of Costumes
Embrace the spirit of the carnival by donning a fabulous costume. Here’s a guide to help you get started with your Mardi Gras costuming journey.
Picking Your Costume
Consider going all-out with a themed costume or simply adding a touch of festive elements to your outfit.
You can wear something in the traditional Mardi Gras colors of purple, green, and gold or opt for a more elaborate ensemble. Remember to incorporate beads.
Some popular Mardi Gras costume ideas include clowns 🤡, Kings and Queens 👑, extravagant masks and masquerade outfits 👺 and mythical creatures 🐉.
Elevate your costume with eye-catching headwear options like hats, wigs, and elaborate headdresses.
A funky wig can instantly transform a simple outfit into a proper Mardi Gras ensemble. You can also opt for themed hats that complement your costume, like a jester hat for a more playful look.
A sparkly headdress adorned with feathers or beads adds a dramatic flair to your outfit and is guaranteed to turn heads at the party. Don’t be afraid to go bold with your headwear choices – after all, it’s Mardi Gras!
Using Makeup to Enhance Your Look
Besides costumes and headwear, makeup plays a significant role in bringing your Mardi Gras outfit to life.
Experiment with vibrant colors and intricate designs to complement your costume and showcase your creativity.
Here are a few makeup tips for your Mardi Gras look:
- Use bright eyeshadows and shimmering glitters to highlight your eyes
- Play with bold lip colors, like purple or green, to match your outfit
- Consider using face paint to create intricate patterns or to give your appearance a thematic touch
💡 Pro Tip: Makeup should enhance your Mardi Gras costume and add an extra layer of fun and excitement to your overall look.
✨ Stylish Mardi Gras Outfits
Crafting an Eye-Catching Look
Start by choosing a colorful clothing item, such as a dress, leggings, or even a funky tutu. Pair it with more neutral items like a jean jacket or a simple top to make the vibrant hues pop.
Mix and match various patterns and textures for a more visually appealing and fashionable ensemble. Be bold in incorporating layers to create a more dynamic and stylish look.
Mardi Gras is all about being bold and a bit outside of your comfort zone!
Adding the Mardi Gras Sparkle
Now that you have a solid base for your outfit, it’s time to amp up the sparkle factor. Mardi Gras is known for its bright colors; adding some shine will make you stand out. Sequins, rhinestones, and metallic accessories can help you achieve that eye-catching look.
Consider wearing statement pieces like a dazzling headband, chunky jewelry, or even a bedazzled belt. If you want to take it a step further, you can opt for a pair of glittery shoes or a bag with lots of shimmer and shine.
Remember to prioritize comfort for long days of parades and celebrations. Choose footwear that’s supportive and appropriate for walking, like comfortable shoes or boots.
With these tips in mind, you’re sure to create a stunning Mardi Gras outfit that will turn heads and help you celebrate in style!
🕺 Mardi Gras Balls
Decoding the Dress Code
For more traditional balls, men typically wear a tuxedo or suit with a cummerbund or bow tie, while women don a formal gown or cocktail dress.
If you’re attending a more casual ball, men can opt for khakis with a button-down shirt and a sports coat, while women can choose a sundress or a skirt and blouse combo.
Selecting the right footwear is crucial for enjoying Mardi Gras balls without foot pain. Although you might be tempted to wear high heels to match your elegant attire, remember that comfortable shoes are essential, as you will likely be on your feet for extended periods.
💡 Pro Tip: Formal events often require black tie attire, which includes dress shoes for men and stylish yet comfortable heels or flats for women.
Selecting a Suitable Bag
A well-chosen bag can make all the difference in organizing your essentials while keeping your hands free to enjoy the festivities and catch beads (of course)!
Consider a small, elegant purse or clutch that matches your outfit and can hold your necessary items like your phone, keys, and a compact. Leave some room for any Mardi Gras beads and trinkets you collect throughout the night!
🛍️ Shopping for Mardi Gras
New Orleans has a variety of shops where you can find all the accessories you need to complete your Mardi Gras outfits. Whether it’s a fabulous headband, Mardi Gras-themed phone case, or festive beads, you can find something that suits your style.
Fifi Mahony’s on Royal St. is a fantastic place to start, as they offer a wide range of wigs, fascinators, and other unique pieces to make your outfit stand out.
If you’re looking for a more indie vibe, try Glitter Box N.O. on Royal St. This shop features local femme makers crafting flashy earrings, headwear, hot pants, and more.
Another great option is to visit the French Market on Chartres St., where you can find Mardi Gras accessories and souvenirs. Make sure also to check out the various shops on Magazine St. They often carry seasonal Mardi Gras merchandise.
Don’t have the time or resources to create your own Mardi Gras outfit? Consider renting a costume from one of the many rental shops in New Orleans.
Southern Costume Company on Lafayette St. has a vast selection of costumes, including traditional Mardi Gras Indian outfits.
They’re known for their high-quality materials, attention to detail, and excellent customer service. Furthermore, they have an easy rental process, ensuring you find the perfect outfit without any hassle.