Ok, I’ll admit, this article might be a little premature, but in the fashion world it’s perfectly acceptable to buy summer outfits while outdoor temperatures are still sub-zero.
Ok, I’ll admit, this article might be a little premature, but in the fashion world it’s perfectly acceptable to buy summer outfits while outdoor temperatures are still sub-zero. Besides, snow in March is just not okay, so I’m going to shut the curtains and get all excited about festival fashion.
Whether you’re staying put in old Blighty or jetting off to somewhere tropical, a music festival can be the best kind of get-away, regardless of temperature. But let’s face it—wellies and a parka are unfortunately August essentials in the UK, and not so much so in sunny Spain. With the right wardrobe you’ll have an amazing time come rain or shine.
For the die-hard Brit-festival lovers, Reading and Leeds festivals offer a chance to have a music filled, hygiene-less weekend without needing your passport. Organised by Festival Republic, the events cater for Southerners and Northerners respectively, having brought in big name bands like Muse and Kasabian over the past few years. This year’s headliners have been named as Green Day, Eminem and Biffy Clyro.
Speaking as a two time attendee of Leeds Fest I can vouch for the fact that there is a lot of rain and even more mud. For these festivals, a good pair of wellies are a fashion must have. Classic Hunter boots will set you back £80, but my advice would be- don’t bother. Forget the label and get a cheaper pair—they’re only going to get muddy. Really, really muddy. Sorry, I’m just telling it like it is.
Another fashion essential for Reading and Leeds is a good, ideally waterproof, jacket. I made the mistake of not bothering one year and ended up sporting a very trendy plastic poncho for the weekend. No amount of customising will make an orange bin bag with arms look good, so err on the side of caution and take a jacket that will be able to conquer the elements.
But it’s not all doom and gloom. The sun does show its face from time and to time, and this is when what is underneath the parka becomes important. During my trips to Leeds Fest I basically lived in Levis denim cut offs, courtesy of Urban Outfitters—for £30ish they are a festival god-send. Aztec design pockets, studs and dip dye motifs are often added to the denim by shops but you can just as easily make these customisations yourself. Of course, it also helps that they are comfortable. You’ll take comfort where you can get it when you’re sleeping on the floor of a field for 5 nights.
The quintessential Brit Festival experience comes in the form of Glastonbury. The iconic festival will be held in June this year, after a hiatus last summer. Although no headliners have been confirmed yet, bands including The Rolling Stones and Arctic Monkeys are rumoured to be topping the bill. Glasto is notorious for its muddy terrain, so again, wellies and a waterproof are must haves. But, the festival is equally as well known for being a stomping ground for celeb royalty meaning that a little bit of rain can’t dampen fashion spirits.
A key trend on the catwalks of SS13 was futuristic fashion. Burberry featured metallic pieces in their spring summer show, and the high street has followed suit. ASOS’ £22 metallic foil t-shirt is a practical way to wear the trend. Team it with some denim dungarees and a pair of wellies for an effortless festival look.
Another main trend for this summer is print—the bigger, the bolder, the better. Modern florals at Prada and colourful prints at Dolce and Gabbana have paved the way for the high street’s summer collections. Topshop is paying homage to this super summery trend already—the £54 ‘Tiger Lattice’ culotte and sun top set in a bright yellow hue is perfect for festivals like Glastonbury as it can be worn on its own on a sunny day, or with tights and a jacket, should the heavens decide to open.
Of course, if you’re lucky enough to be heading to hotter climates for your festival fix, you can leave your coat and boots at home.
One of the most popular European music festivals is Benicàssim, which is held near Valencia in Spain, and attracts thousands of British sun-seekers every year. This year the festival will be headlined by Arctic Monkeys, The Killers and Queens of the Stone Age. Acts don’t take the stage until night time as temperatures are too hot during the day, so festival goers just have to kill time lying on a beach. With this being the case, a suitcase full of bikinis and sun cream seems like the sensible option, right? (I’ll take this opportunity to say that I am going to Benicàssim, and this is my suitcase strategy. Sensible, I know.)
SS13 catwalks paid homage to 50s style, but in 30 degree heat, being ‘on trend’ can easily be over-looked. An easy way to wear the trend at Benicàssim or any other foreign festival comes in the form of a retro bikini set. Topshop’s £34 red check halter-neck top and high-waisted bottoms are a perfect way of channelling vintage style whilst on the beach or in the sea. Finish off the look with a pair of Cat Eye sunglasses, as seen on the runways of Dior, to add an extra pinch of old Hollywood glamour to your festival outfit.
Whether at home or away, festival fashion is always fun. I, for one, cannot wait to get my annual fix. 4 months and counting…