Mardi Gras shopping: what to wear and where to get it


Many markets open around this time of year to sell otherwise socially unwearable clothes. When it’s Carnival season, however, the stranger the better.

Taylor DeMulling, Associate Arcade Editor

Calling all fanny pack-enthusiasts, all lovers of glitter and extravagance: break out your neon windbreakers, because carnival season has begun. If this is your first Mardi Gras, or you are just looking to expand the horizons of your costume collection, The Arcade has compiled a list of the finest purveyors of wacky and wild gear that’s really only appropriate this time of year. If you have been on the hunt for the perfect tutu or mask, look no further.

If you are looking to shop locally, there are many options around campus within walking, streetcar, or Ubering distance. Funky Monkey, a thrift store on Magazine Street, is widely regarded by Tulane students as the premier place for all vintage, costume, and otherwise quirky finds. As such, it is practically a required stop on the hunt for Mardi Gras essentials. You can scour the racks for one-of-a-kind vintage wares, bizarre sunglasses, and bold jewelry, though they also have a small selection of new costumes, as well as the shiny leggings and glittery crop tops that seem to be essential in the Mardi Gras uniform.

Bloomin’ Deals Thrift Shop on Freret Street, Buffalo Exchange on Magazine Street, and even the old standby, Goodwill, on Tulane Avenue are also stellar options for eccentric costume ideas while still ballin’ on a budget. These are the places to find tragically — or terrifically?– 80’s windbreakers, animal print anything and old t-shirts with weird sayings that you wear only quasi-ironically.

Frock Candy, on Magazine Street, errs less on the flashy side of Mardi wear, but still offers a broad selection of brightly-colored, unique clothing that you could likely wear again after parade season comes to an end. American Apparel, also on Magazine, is the go-to place for shiny leggings and body suits that will last all four years, through any kind of shenanigans.

If you are too deep into watching “Making a Murderer” on Netflix to find the time for a costume-shopping excursion (no shame), take a moment to thank Amazon Prime for delivering sequin fanny packs, feather boas, kitschy Mardi Gras polos and face glitter in two days. Etsy and Ragstock are also notable online retailers if you can not find the time to go thrifting in person and are desperately searching for the perfect retro jacket.

Whether your Mardi Gras aesthetic is gaudy or goddess, the virtues of a trip to Magazine Street for shopping have well been extolled, and options for off-the-wall fashion that will not break the bank have been proposed, so you and your krewe are sure to find the perfect outfits.

Leave a Comment