Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Packing for OppiKoppi

I have been excited about OppiKoppi for months now!  It’s this weekend and hosts quite a few thousand people, loads of great local and international bands and for a weekend I’ll be enjoying the farm heat like I used to back in Limpopo.  Last year was my first OppiKoppi visit and I was lucky enough to have gone with a very experienced OppiKoppian.  He organised coffee, tea and rusks for breakfast, braai-broodjies for lunch and wors rolls for supper – It was a breeze compared to other camps.  However, being a dude, he had no advice for me on packing.  “Jeans, T-shirts and nothing white” isn’t exactly festival fashion advice for the more creative.
While OppiKoppi can be done in style with my packing advice and tips, remember it is a dusty music festival and not a fashion show, so don’t overdo it.  Below is a simple packing list for the weekend along with some fashion and beauty tips.  This list should simplify your packing and possibly leave room for more important festival items, like alcohol!


T-shirts, as my OppiKoppian guide suggested, are definitely a basic you need to bring along.  They’re easy and cool to wear and with the right print you can get your personality across very quickly.  Communicating who you are with t-shirts is a great way to sift through crowds and find like-minded people who will share a drink and a smoke with you.  Three different t-shirts or vests are all you need for the festival.  I know it sounds like too little, but remember you’ll have dresses there too.

You’ll need a warm hoodie to bring along too.  You could go for a jacket or coat, but remember it is a dirty festival.  Don’t bring anything too special that could get ruined.  Hoodies are simple, easy and because they zip open, you can still show off your personality (read: assets) ((read: boobs)).

An oversized sweater, poncho or sweatshirt is also a good idea for the weekend.  It’s a great item to sleep in and can be thrown over a pair of tights to become a simple but cute morning outfit while lazing around the camp site.


A pair of trusty old jeans is a MUST! These should be the wingman jeans, the ones that were always by your side.  Don’t bring you high-fashion skinny jeans that are a little too tight as you’ll be running around or sitting on the floor all the time – crack and tummy spillage is not ideal when you’re trying to look cool. Comfortable and reliable is what you want whether skinny, bootleg, straight or high waisted.

A pair of shorts will also be needed at OppiKoppi.  I know a lot of people live in jeans in any weather, but the heat can get annoying in Limpopo, so bring along a pair that’ll go with anything and once again aren’t too tight or too short – sitting on the grass is a big thing at OppiKoppi.

A skirt is another bottom option for the festival.  Midi or short flowing skirts are great options as they can be cool and keep you feeling feminine.  If you’re more a ‘short skirt’ kinda girl, it’s definitely appreciated by the boys at OppiKoppi. But if you have a “thing” about people seeing your underwear while sitting, maybe avoid the short, tight skirts.


Dresses are an easy option for music festivals in general and require very little thinking, something you’ll thank me for when you’re hungover.  Although maxi dresses are very in at the moment and absolutely beautiful, the camping areas are grassless and dusty.  If you’d prefer to avoid dust/alcohol/bodily fluids on your dress hem, try stick to short or mid-length dresses.


If you have any Y chromosomes, you too feel the way I do about shoes.  DO NOT bring your favourite pair to OppiKoppi! Bring comfortable, old, crappy sneakers that know how to withstand all the elements.  A closed pair of shoes like sneakers, oxfords or brogues are a must at the festival, especially since it starts to get cold at night.

An extra pair of sandals is optional if you’d like to mix things up or feel a little softer in your dresses but it’s not necessary if you’re cool with your trusty kicks.


Accessories should be kept to a minimum at OppiKoppi to save time, prevent loss and because too much jewellery at a music festival can make you look like a douche (someone had to say it).  When it comes to jewellery, pick a ring (or two) and a necklace (or set) that go with all of your chosen clothing items.  A simple ring that you can sleep in is a great idea to avoid misplacing it (I find things mysteriously go missing when you’re intoxicated) while a simple necklace can easily be hung in your tent (hooked through zips or mesh).

If you find you’ve forgotten a pair of sunglasses, you might as well go home.  Besides wetwipes, these are probably the most important item on your packing list.  I wouldn’t suggest bringing your designer brand as sunglasses have a way breaking at OppiKoppi.  Rather have a look around for a cheap pair or two of plastic sunnies to wear all day, every day.

As we all know, showering at OppiKoppi or any festival or camp site, is not usually a pleasurable experience.  Luckily, no one there judges you for the lack of personal hygiene.  Wetwipes and deodorant are great ways to stay “sort-of” fresh during the festival, but another great trick is to wear a hat.  Yup, beanies, fadoras, bowlers, caps, beret’s, whatever your preferred style, hats not only keep the sun off your face but are a great way to disguise your soon-to-be dirty hair.


More underwear and socks than you think you’ll need to bring is definitely advisable.  A change of one or both of these items is a great way to feel cleaner.  Thick black tights are also an important item as they can be used to run around in, sleep in, or worn under jeans to keep you warmer.

Batiste is an amazing product I’ll be bringing along this year.  The dry shampoo comes in an aerosol can (also available in smaller sizes for handbags or purses) and removes or disguises the dirt in your hair.  It’s a great replacement for washing your hair as I find with all the dust in the area, washing your hair at Koppi ends up with you having dirtier hair than when you started! Wet hair + dust = dreadlocks.  Batiste is available at clicks and only costs R54.95. If you’d like a cheat item, talcolm powder works just as well although I wouldn’t suggest it for ladies with dark hair.

Another nice trick for OppiKoppi, one my male guide did not think of, is to paint your nails. I know this sounds silly as they’re bound to chip but remember it’s very dirty.  Chipped, painted nails are way cooler than dirty nails, trust me.

There you go, my girls guide to packing for OppiKoppi.  Obviously, all items you pack should blend easily as it makes mixing and matching one less thing to worry about. If you have other suggestions, I’d love to hear them! Here’s the short version for the list obsessed among us (yeah, I’m one of them):

Packing list

3 T shirts
1 Jeans
1 Shorts
1 Skirt
3 Dresses
1 Pair of Thick Tights
Loads of underwear and socks
1 Pair of Closed Shoes
1 Pair of Sandals
1 Hoodie
1 Pair of Sunglasses
2 Hats
1 Necklace
1 Ring

Enjoy Oppikoppi and remember, packing should be fun, not a chore.


  1. I looove you for this! Prepares us koppi virgins to be ravaged without giving away that it's our first time *snigger*

  2. Kudos on a lady's guide to roughing it up in style, Jordan! As a seasoned OppiKoppier dude already bleak for NOT making it this year, this makes me uber-jealous of all the eye candy I'm missing out on..


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