6 Ways to Transform Your Campsite into The Ultimate Hangout Spot

Article by: Tessla Venus Goodwin|@GlitterSpies

Thu May 03, 2018 | 12:30 PM

Whether it’s your first camping festival or your 500th, having a pretty and comfortable campsite can make or break your experience. I asked some of our most seasoned readers what they bring to add that extra sparkle and shine. Waking up on a deflated air mattress in the dark? Yeah, we want to avoid that.

Hang Up Tapestries and Fabric

Campsite Makeover Tapestries Cuethedanger

Photo by: Cue The Danger

The easiest way to instantly beautify your campsite is to hang some colorful fabric or tapestries from your shade structure and tent.

BUDGET: If you live near a city center, go to the fashion district to save on bulk rolls of cheap fabric. In Downtown LA, you can get fabric for $1-2 a yard. Go for the most colorful and/or shiny stuff you can find. Twenty yards will be more than enough to get your whole camp swagged out. You can also get inexpensive tapestries online.

INVEST: Some of the most stunning visionary artwork is printed on tapestries! If you have more to spend, these are the way to go. Think of it as portable art! Companies like Third Eye Tapestries and Jumbie Art can add that perma-trippy vibe you’re jonesin’ for.

Sleep Soundly

Bestival 2014 Carolina Faruolo Tents

Photo by: Carolina Faruolo

The resounding advice from our festie-goers was to ditch the air mattress. A Thermarest or memory foam sleeping pad can change your whole festival experience. My sleeping pad for festivals is more comfy than my bed!

BUDGET: A thin sleeping pad with foam lining is perfect if you are camping solo. The way it is sewn makes the air flow into even pockets so it distributes way better than an air mattress. This one is a best seller. It rolls up really tiny so you can easily carry it if you're parked far from your camp.

Campsite Makeover Amazon Sleeping Pad

Photo by: Amazon

INVEST: A queen-sized 3-4 inch memory foam topper is the ultimate camping luxury. There are tons of options on Overstock.com. If you wanna get really fancy, put it on top of a cot, and you’ll be sleeping like a king or queen. The cot also helps avoid the scorching hot or freezing cold ground of your tent.

Have a Seat

Desert Hearts Spring 2016 Galen Oakes   31

Photo by: Galen Oakes

There is nothing worse than crawling back to your campsite after an insane dance session to find there’s nowhere comfy to sit. Next time, focus on the fluff and you’ll be sittin’ pretty.

BUDGET: Pillows, pillows and more pillows! You can really never have enough. Every time you thrift, buy 1-2 comfy pillows. Goodwill has them for $3-$5 each. If your group of 10 friends each brings 5 pillows, that’s 50 – enough to create the cuddle puddle of your dreams.

Desert Hearts Spring 2016 Galen Oakes   31

Photo by: Galen Oakes

INVEST: There are loads of cheap couches at nearly every thrift store. If you have the budget and the means to haul one to a festival, it is totally worth it. You can also find them every day in Craigslist's free section.

Lay Down Flooring

Symbiosis Gathering 2015 Juliana Bernstein Isaac Jonahkai 1

As we all know, festivals can be very dirty! It’s part of what we love about them. But having a clean campsite can be a refuge from those dusty dance floors and a lovely relief for your bare feet.

BUDGET: Here again, the thrift store is your best friend. It’s really the only place you’ll be able to find a large rug (about 10 x 10) for under $50.

Campsite Makeover Flooring Rainbow Tiles

INVEST: These rainbow foam tiles are really fun and lightweight. A large area of Astroturf can also add a super fresh look to your weekend abode.

Light It Up

Northern Nights Music Festival 2015 Lights In The Trees Conner Coughenour

Lighting is important for a couple of different reasons: 1) It is essential to be able to find your camp and anything at your camp in the dark. 2) The more well-lit an area, the more conscious people will be of making a mess. Make sure you have both stationary and portable lights.

BUDGET: You can get 33 feet of rainbow LED fairy or rope lights for under $15. There are also some really amazing solar options like these purple disco ball lights. A four-pack of LED hanging lanterns for $18? Yes please!

Campsite Makeover Mpowered Luci Light

Photo by: Mpowerd

INVEST: These inflatable solar lights by Luci are $20 each but super dope and energy saving.

Make It Smell Nice

Campsite Makeover Palo Santo Wood Palo Santo Supply

The combination of many people gathered for countless days, sweating and often not showering, plus trash bags baking in the sun, can make a campsite smell less than ideal. Luckily, there are many fairly inexpensive ways to fix that and make a huge difference.

BUDGET: Palo Santo and/or incense is the key to transforming your campsite into a haven. If you are at a festival with lots of bugs, a citronella candle can keep the itching away and leave a pleasant smell. This one is all natural.

INVEST: $20 might seem like a lot to spend on trash bags, but it is worth it. Ultra heavy duty trash bags are a must! Don’t forget to sort into recycling, landfill and compost. Read your festival packet to see if you need to pack out your trash or if you can leave it in a particular area.

How do you spice up your campsites?

This article was originally published in February 2017