3 Steps to a Cheap & Easy Outfit for Oktoberfest

It's that time again, lovelies! It's become tradition for us and friends to go to a local Oktoberfest. Sometimes we dress up. Sometimes we don't. Sometimes we eat in the festhalle. Sometimes we host our own pre-fest feast.

This year, we're excited to have a few friends over to our house for G's homemade brats with German potato salad, spaetzle, pretzels, and some desserts. After filling our bellies, we'll head to the festival for bier, keg tossing, log sawing, and hammerschlagen. And it feels like a good year to dress up. :)

I've been wanting to buy an authentic, traditional dirndl since my first fest. But I procrastinated. And I'm wary of getting the measurements right online with such short notice. Plus, a nice dirndl goes for a pretty price and I'm saving for a little vacation. (Eventually, I'd love to buy one from Rare Dirndl.) 

So once again, I'm scrounging together a do-it-yourself sort of dirndl costume for the occasion. Luckily, I still have the foundation of my first DIY dirndl: a cheap halloween costume. For my first Oktoberfest, I wore a red and white gingham skirt over it with a black apron. This year, I'm switching things up a bit.

I'm inspired by this lovely dirndl:

I love the black and white gingham—it's a great excuse to wear a bright red lipstick or nail polish. 

Here's how I'm turning my 'Heidi Ho' costume into a classier, more authentic dirndl-inspired getup for Oktoberfest this weekend:

1. Start with a cheap costume.

Mine's a Leg Avenue 'Heidi Ho' dress I found on a Halloween rack at Goodwill a few years ago. The skirt is waaaay too short, but the blouse portion is perfect and the costume fits really well. You can score this costume or a similar barmaid / milkmaid / German girl costume online for $15-30—or for less if you scavenge thrift shops.

My cost: FREE
(I bought the costume years ago.)

2. Add a matching, knee-length, a-line skirt.

I bought mine on Amazon. It was inexpensive, but the reviews were okay and I'm pleasantly surprised at the quality. (I'll definitely wear it again—not just for costumes!) I picked one with a nice fullness to it because I'll be wearing it over the existing Halloween costume. That way, the poof of the Halloween costume will give it a bit of shape. If you don't want the fullness, you could simply cut/separate the Halloween blouse from the skirt and tuck the blouse into your new skirt. Depending on the look you're going for, you could do a floral or gingham pattern skirt, too. I went with solid black based on my inspiration dirndl.

My cost: $16 for a solid black skirt

3. Put on the final touch with accessories.

I love a dirndl with a pretty apron. Unfortunately, I've misplaced my half aprons since moving, but I found the perfect black and white gingham apron at a local antique shop for just $8. Etsy is also a great place to look. Rather than tromp around in high heels like the costume model, I'll be wearing easy-to-walk-in black flats. I also sprang for an edelweiss choker this year. I'll probably use a small, crossbody purse I already own. Crossbody straps keep the hands/arms free for bier steins. ;)

My cost: $8 for the apron, $10 for the necklace
FREE shoes (already own them!)

My total this year: $34

Considering that a really quality dirndl will set me back over $100, I'm quite happy with only spending $34 this year. That leaves more room in the budget for food and beer. ;)

Then, check out 6 more Oktoberfest ensembles, ranging from traditional to casual. 

Are you partaking in any Oktoberfestivities? What will you be wearing?


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