Bum bags, or fanny packs if you’re a friend from across the pond, are no longer just the retro accessory of dads in the 80’s but definitely an absolute festival essential for everyone! I’ve been working at and partying at festivals for well over a decade and a bum bag, fanny pack or utility belt is the #1 item of my festival packing list.
3 reasons why bum bags are so perfect for festivals:
✔ They’re hands-free! Leaving you your arms free to dance, eat & do whatever!
✔ They are safe – you can keep your valuables in front of you, zipped up & attached at all times.
✔ They’re good for crowds. Compact and not in the way, you can shimmy through to the front of any dance floor with a bumbag unlike a cumbersome backpack.
The 12 Best Bum bags for Festivals
From purely functional to the star attraction I’ve gathered some of my favourite festival bum bags for you to peruse. As ever, I’ve focussed on ethical and independent festival wear designers – find out more about how to shop for festival fashion more ethically here.
Bum bags by Beksies Boutique
Beksie is the original don dadda of the festival bum bag, I have two by her and they are such fantastic quality with handy zipped pockets and amazing attention to detail, I love this cotton tasselled one with a Crysanthenum print.
Or, if you’re feeling flashy, you can get her to make you a custom made bum bag, as wild as your imagination allows! You can see an example for inspiration on the lovely Sol dancing at Shambala above – some more proof that bum bags are certainly for all genders.
For a bit of understated disco vibes check out this Petrol Sequin one – I’ve got this and can attest that it is amazing and it goes with everything.
Beksie’s bum bags are an absolute essential for festivals & life in general, handmade in Brighton and well worth the investment!
Butchi & Gosmos Bum bags made in Bristol
My pal Joh makes lovely bum bags in her signature gold and bright coloured patterned fabric – you might remember me customising one at Port Eliot a couple of years ago! You can check out her whole selection online or shop in-store at That Thing if you’re in Bristol in the UK.
Pup Tart Handmade Bum bag
Small but wonderfully formed, with the perfect amount of space for your phone and essentials – there are a number of colours to choose from but I like this mermaidy green glitter bum bag .
Jackfruit woven bumbag
Colourful, bold, ethnic prints are Jackfruit’s bag (excuse the pun!) and they make a whole range of clothes from your head to your toes. This festival bumbag is made from a woven fabric in an aztec style print, but they also do smaller ones with a flatter fabric like this cute one.
Unexampled Vintage retro bumbags
For those of you who want to go a bit more understated and practical, why not choose a vintage leather or retro sports style bum bag from Unexampled Vintage’s range? Guaranteed to last the test of time – because they already have!
recycled Ikea bum bags
These IKEA bum bags are an excellent use of upcycled material, You can finish off the whole lewk with a matching IKEA bucket hat as well – complete with IKEA pencil in a holder. If you want to go for the FULL Swedish set with accessories for every day there’s also a messenger bag and a baseball cap!
Lady Gonzales art bum bag
Get mouthy with this teeth printed Lady Gonzales bumbag, it’s seriously good quality faux leather and satin with a hardy metal zip.
FranisTienda furry bum bag
This super cute bubblegum pink bumbag is from Barcelona designer Franic Tienda and is faux fur with cute smiley rave faces on the strap!
merrimaking fruity fanny pack
These guys have been producing fun irreverent festival clothes for years, their original fruity flavour bumbags come in watermelon as well as this zesty little kiwi shaped festival bumbag.
Festival Bum bag Styling Inspiration
Festival bum bags are not just for bums! Wear them around your waist or across your body or even stacked two at a time… Here are a few ways I’ve worn my fanny packs at festivals across the world in the past.
Features to look out for when shopping for a festival bum bag:
- A good quality zip; you want your bum bag to last you a lifetime of festivals so lookout for a sturdy, good quality metal zip, ideally a ‘YKK one’. This means it’s less likely to catch or break.
- An adjustable waistband; for ultimate comfort over any outfit and the option to wear how you want you’ll want to ensure that the waistband on your bum bag is adjustable and un-clickable.
- Handy pockets; having different places to put your things is so useful when you’re at a festival! Small secret pockets and secure zippable pockets at the back to keep your valuables secure are really helpful. Details like a metal ring for your lanyard/keys are also a nice touch!
- An adequate size; make sure you know what you want to be able to carry on your person and make sure that they model you’re shopping for will fit it all in comfortably.
How do you wear yours?!
Pin these festival bum bags for later…
Glorious photo above is Sol of The Provibers – taken by Louise Roberts for Shambala