Feathers won’t Fly

In the past, “leather and feather” has been a very popular look amongst all the cool kiddies on the Playa. Last year,  LA Weekly published a great guide to Burning Man style, and “Neo Tribal” was named the #1 look.

It seems radical self-expression only goes so far. You want to wear the most stylish fashion? Sorry, that’s against the rules, it’s banned.

Feathers are outlawed, just like dogs, plants and firearms. If they find any feathers during the vehicle inspection at the gate, they will be confiscated.

[UPDATE: Bobzilla has let us know that confiscation would be a joy compared to what BMOrg have in store for you if they find feathers. No matter if you’ve been in line for 5 hours, they will make you turn around and dispose of the MOOP in the nearest empty public trash area you can find: you’ll have to go back at least as far as Gehrlach. If you arrive on Thursday or Friday with feathers, you might be trekking back to Reno to find an empty trash can. Because of course, people would drive another 6 hours to throw their feathers in a trash can if BMOrg tells them so. They definitely wouldn’t throw them out on the side of the road or anything, people who bring feathers LOOOOOVE the 10 principles and LNT, they just didn’t know all the details…]

No word yet on if BLM agents or BRC rangers will be doing on the spot fines and seizures on the Playa if you manage to smuggle a mohawk or two in. Keep your feathers on the DL, just in case.

What to wear at Burning Man then? It might be easier to just go naked. Here’s a girls’ guide to fashion and makeup on the Playa.

USA Today has some practical (if kinda frumpy) tips.

This Burner thinks making the feathers out of leather might solve any MOOP issues.

Don’t worry, when you escape the confining regulations of Burning Man for the freedom of expression that’s enshrined as your Constitutional right in the Default World, you can bust out all the feathers you want at the Grand Sierra after party.

38 comments on “Feathers won’t Fly

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  4. It’s pretty simple- if you love & respect Burning Man, then you follow the rules. but if your “fashion” is more important then honoring the principles, the very fundamentals of the festival- then you are not an authentic Burner, no matter how long you’ve been coming. Stop being so caught up in Self & Ego. Flying your animal totem and indulging self-expression are shallow bullshit if it comes at the cost of Leave No Trace. ^ . . ^
    = Y =

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  19. I believe they said this last year too and the year before and they did confiscate feathers at the gate for those that didnt hide their feathers. However on playa it will be hard to ticket 5000+ burners that will be wearing feathers as the hard cold truth and fact is that not only is it in fashion right now – it is a part of self expression. I will be wearing feathers on the playa this year as I have every other year knowing the rules and defying them as feathers are my ultimate form of self expression as birds are my spirit animal, however i don’t wear boas or a bunch of ostrich feathers in a headdress. I’m very, very conscientiousness about the feathers i do choose to bring. Being a headdress designer, i know what I’m doing and how to secure them and test each individual feather to make sure it’s in there. Granted, a few will escape. In order to make up for this, I spend quite a few hours picking up moop throughout the burn. Interestingly enough, there is a lot more cigarette butts than feathers in my mooping adventures.

      • Take your headpiece and shake the living hell out of it. Swing it around all over, maybe even in front of a fan. Afterall, if you’re going to put that baby through a dust storm it better be able to handle it! Then tug at your feathers, as a whole, in parts and one by one even – any loosy goosies – pull them OUT or hot glue those babies on tight! Any feathers that look like they are bent or may cause troubles later – out! Then shake it again! pull one more time…you should be good. Then for every feather headdress you wear spend at least 30-1 hour picking up moop. Do all that and you won’t have any guilt about being one of the feathered warrior rebels…At least that works for me.

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  22. They won’t be confiscated at the gate. Then the Gate crew has a box of feathers that they need to deal with. If you have feathers you are sent to dispose of them somewhere else, off site after which you will be at the back of the line again as the closest place to dispose of them properly is Gerlach.

  23. Daft Punk are coming this year!
    That is as likely as BLM taking your feathers. Nice job with the BS fear tactics. Next we are going to read that RVs are banned.

    • sadly, I wish it all was just a big hoax. But see Bobzilla’s comment, I’m not making this shit up! They’re not going to take them, they’re just not going to let you in to Burning Man if you have them.

  24. I’ve seen many more bottle caps, and cigarette butts in the dust than feathers. I’ve seen more ladies panties & thongs strewn about than feathers. I’ve seen many more glowstix and blinky lites lying in the dust than feathers. In fact, I’ve seen a real live dog each year at Burning Man (in Center Camp, and out & about), but I can’t recall ever seeing feathers in the dust, or blowing across the playa.

    • surely at some time in the last millions of years, birds flew over the Playa and dropped some feathers there. And we all lived to tell the tale. I agree that there are much bigger MOOP fish to fry than picking on the cool kids who care about fashion (and are therefore probably from LA or the east coast, not SF or Reno). Banning glass beer bottles in favor of cans would make more sense, bottle caps are a MOOP nightmare.

      • Bottle caps, cigarette butts, panties, glowsticks, etc are all out there. The difference is that one feather breaks up into hundreds of pieces unlike that other MOOP. Feathers will also fly all over the place (including over the trash fence) much easier than all that other MOOP. Agree with Bob that wood can be a problem, but can’t really ban that. Just ask anyone in DPW what they think about feathers.

      • From what I’ve heard, though, the problem for the Playa Restoration team is that the feathers fall apart into a million little pieces that are nigh on impossible to pick up. Also, the bits & pieces fly through the trash fence and create problems further afield. Butts & caps tend to stay still & in one piece, much easier to clean up for everybody.

  25. Oh noes! What will the self-consciously beee-yootiful people wear in whatever this year’s “Places You’ll Go” video is wear now?

  26. Please note that there are 9 other principles, one of the most important being Leave No Trace. That’s the reason feathers of any sort are banned, because they almost certainly break and fall on the playa, flying anywhere, causing MOOP (matter out of place) and leaving a trace… I think it’s awful that you are making light of it, and almost challenging your readers to try to sneak feathers in, rather than giving them the damn good reason to look good without feathers.

    • that’s right, you’ve never seen anyone with feathers on the Playa before. And if you do see them now, it’s because Burners.Me told them to wear them (in a post about how feathers are banned and will be confiscated at the gate, that suggested you should go naked instead)

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