Pub Talk

How to Pick the Perfect Dirndl For Oktoberfest

An essential part of spending a perfect day at the Oktoberfest is wearing traditional clothes, and dirndl dresses are just the best for celebrating.

How to Pick the Perfect Dirndl For Oktoberfest

Okay, so first things first — if you don’t know what the heck “OKTOBERFEST” is…read more about Oktoberfest here. Then check out our list of Oktoberfests around the world and decide which ones you’ll be attending.

Now we can focus on the perfect wiesn outfit for the ladies. Men check out our article about picking out Lederhosen.

The range of dirndl dresses is staggering, offering a perfect version for every taste. This, however, does not mean that every set of traditional clothes is also a good choice for a visit at the Oktoberfest.


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FYI–traditional garments are not required, but a classic lederhosen or dirndl improves the taste of the beer.

*Lederhosen/dirndls not included; costumes may not actually improve the taste of beer.


Here are a few tips for your dirndl outfit:

The Dirndl Dress

Fabric: The Oktoberfest is a hearty place with hearty behaviour: When the waitress slams ten mugs of beer onto the wooden table, there might be some spillage. So: Avoid sensitive materials and rather choose a dirndl dress made of cotton or linen, which you can just put into the washing machine on the next day. If you prefer a more distinguished look, go for a silk dirndl dress.

Fit: A dirndl dress should fit like a second skin. It should be a tight fit around the waist and upper body to avoid shifting. The skirt, however, should fan out wide and swing. Avoid creases in the upper body part. If here are any, the dirndl dress is either too large, allowing empty space between body and fabric, or too small. There is a perfect dirndl dress for every lady – just take your time when trying them on.

Length: Usually, after around two masses of beer, people give in to the urge of climbing onto the beer benches, as swaying to the music is a lot better up there. If you feel like this is you, you should go for a midi-length dirndl. Rule of thumb says that a dirndl dress should end at the height of a beer mug above the ground. That way you don’t allow unwelcome looks up your skirt but still show a bit of skin.
But shorter dresses are an option, too, always depending on what you are comfortable with. Knee-length dirndl dresses are trending and permit a look at the lady’s calves. Avoid extra short dirndl dresses, as they are impractical at the celebrations in the tent and also a bit airy in those autumn nights.

Color: Blue, violet, turquoise – there is actually no wrong choice. Wear any color you like and feel comfortable with. Anything goes, as long as you like it. Traditional colors for a dirndl dress are red, blue, dark green and light pink, while modern dirndl dresses also come in strong pink, yellow or strong green.

3 Dirndl Sizes
Image by: The Rococoroamer

The Blouse

Traditionally, ladies wear white blouses at the Oktoberfest. They just look great and make the colors of the dirndl dress stand out even more. Some new trends have prevailed over the last year, too. Apart from white blouses, you can now also see frill blouses or colorful ones. Usually, it’s “either/or”. If your dirndl is very colorful, you should choose a more discreet blouse. If the dirndl dress is rather toned down, you can go a bit wilder with the blouse.
The fit depends on your taste: Usually, the Oktoberfest is a very open-hearted event, but high-necked blouses have also become a charming trend.

The Apron

Three aprons for every dirndl dress – that’s what you will find in the wardrobe of a passionate Oktoberfest fan. This reflects on of the big advantages of dirndl dresses: It’s versatile and can be jazzed up by combining it with various aprons. The main rule is that the apron should end together with the lower seam of the dress. It’s also essential on which side you tie the apron.

The Jacket

Food, beverages, music and your Oktoberfest flirt (optional) will keep things hot inside the beer tent, so you won’t need a jacket there. Things might feel a lot different on the outside, though. If you plan on going on a stroll across the festival grounds after your visit at the beer tent, you might want to bring a cardigan. Knitted Bavarian jackets go especially well with dirndl dresses and if you really forgot your own, you can always rely on a Bavarian gentleman to help you out with his vest.

The Accessories

A dirndl dress is usually enough of an eye catcher, but if you want to add some more décor, you should go for little studs, bracelets or rings. Just don’t wear a heavy necklace that both overloads and obstructs the view of your beautiful dirndl neckline.
Traditional hats and hairbands are also making their comeback, especially when combined with a braided hairstyle.

The Bag

Despite the sewn-in pocket in every good dirndl dress, a lady sometimes needs a bit more room for her essentials. Clutches, small backpacks and shoulder bags all go well with dirndl dresses, as long as they are toned down, match the color of the dress and don’t take away the attention form the dirndl.

The Shoes

With the shoes, it’s a lot like with the apron: A beautiful dirndl dress allows a wide range of shoes. Peeptoes, bootees, slippers, pumps or simple ballerina shoes are all viable options, always depending on what your plans are: Pumps might be a good idea, if you are up for a relaxed evening in the beer garden, not so much for dancing in the beer tent, though. Tip: Always pack a pair of ballerina shoes, which you can slip on when the party moves onto the benches.

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