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Outdoor Festival Fashion

Posted by on Apr 6, 2012

Outdoor Festival Fashion

UPDATE 2/6/13: Found this amazing Rave Wear video, and had to share:


One great thing about music festivals is the fact that you can literally get away with wearing – or not wearing whatever you want.  The more ridiculous you look, the more likely people are to compliment what you’re wearing, or want to take pictures with you.  Case-in-point: costumes.  Many people decide to wear costumes at festivals – from green man suits, to Waldo, and of course fairy outfits – you will see people dressed up in all different kinds of ways.  If you’re looking to stand out, by all means, recycle that Halloween costume, pick up some unique vintage clothing, or wear body paint for the weekend.  If you’re a bit more conservative in your fashion choices, a festival is the perfect place to wear that outfit that is just a bit too bold for everyday wear.  Although festivals truly have no fashion guidelines, I have outlined some of the trends that I have seen most often at these events.

Fashion Dos

Boho Chic – These types of items are comfortable and fun, which is the perfect combination.  Fringe, crochet, boho-style hats, headbands, and head wraps are definitely popular in the music festival scene.   Long skirts, and of course summer dresses are great choices as well.




Navajo - Native-American influenced items are hugely popular.  I’ve seen many-a-headdress, Navajo-print t-shirts, headbands and belts.







Bright Colors – This season, bright and pastel solids are in.  If you are looking to make a fashion statement consider mixing a solid colored top with a different color denim or linen shorts.  Pastel blues, pinks and yellows are particularly hot.



Tie-dye – You are sure to see ample amounts of tie-dye over the weekend.




Tutus – While not necessarily the most serious fashion choice, tutus are fun to wear and fun to dance around in.  These are more popular with the electronic, late night crowds, but you will likely see tutus throughout the day as well.

Denim Shorts – Daisy-dukes are a huge favorite in the scene.  They can be warmer than other options such as bikini bottoms, or booty shorts, but cut-offs are a classic summer choice.

Swimsuits – Many people feel the best way to escape the heat is in a bikini.  I prefer to pair a bikini with a sarong, or skirt for added coverage.

Athletic Wear – Another practical choice is athletic wear.  These clothes are durable, breathable and were made to be sweated in.  What could be better for a dirty weekend of dancing, hooping, yoga or just walking around?

Fun Accessories – Anything that sparkles or jingles is definitely a festival-favorite.  Those furry hats with ears will be in abundance as well.












Layering – Particularly for late-nights, layers are key.  It may cool off quite a bit at night, so it will be wise to have some kind of jacket or warmer layer for when you’re walking to or from the set.  However, crowds can get uncomfortably hot so be sure to have barer layers underneath.




Rainwear – Make sure to bring a rain jacket, rain boots, and other rain gear.  If you forget to pack these items, vendors will most likely have ponchos available, but the second the rain starts, the prices will skyrocket.  Don’t let the weather break your bank or leave you cold, wet and uncomfortable – remember to pack appropriately!




Comfortable Footwear – Rain boots, hiking boots, crocs, sanuks, vibrams, and/or leather sandals are definitely the way to go.  While chucks, or other sneakers may seem like a great idea, there will most likely be ruined by mud, dust, and dirt.  Also beware of flip-fops, as they are prone to breaking with heavy use.



Fashion Don’ts




No Black – Wearing black, particularly all black, is not the best summer festival choice.  As black absorbs themost light, it will get hot, and fast.  Stay cooler by wearing lighter colors.


No Jeans – Unless you’re expecting mild weather, jeans are not a good choice.  If it rains, it takes denim a long time to dry out.  If it’s hot, jeans will be sweaty and uncomfortable.


No White – Wearing white is not a good choice, as it will be dusty, muddy and dirty over the weekend.  You whites will not be white after being outside all weekend.

No Heels – You will be standing for hours and hours, and most likely walking miles every day.  Wearing heels will only be an uncomfortable obstacle for you, that may or may not result in some ridicule from fellow festival-goers.


By: Lindsey

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One comment on “Outdoor Festival Fashion

  1. Best Streetwear on said:

    So basically, I can’t afford a full costume. I need an anime character who wears regular street clothes. I think I’ll be able to get a wig. By the way I am black if that helps..

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