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Festival Fashion: from Leeds Fest to Glastonbury

As the UK heads back to normalcy, sitting on a field in the sunshine with stray glitter in unwashed hair as music thumps in the background seems almost in reach. We know that festivals are first and foremost about the music and making memories, but it doesn’t hurt to look good.

Whilst there is some generally recognised festival staples, such as shorts, wellies, flower crowns, etc., there are so many festivals in the UK, each hugely variant in what they have to offer, and each with their own ‘vibe’ and style.

What to wear?

1. Leeds Festival

Leeds Festival is one of the biggest in the north of England, known for huge alternative pop headliners such as Arctic Monkeys, Vampire Weekend and Catfish and the Bottlemen. However, the festival also hosts electronic and deep house artists such as Disclosure and Flume and many more. Due to the festival having such a wide range of musical genres and artists, it’s difficult to pick just one style.

Because of its more alternative nature, an oversized denim jacket is key. To go the extra mile, you can accessorise with badge pins or patches of the bands that are playing. Pair with a good pair of Doc Martens for the mud and you’re good to go.

2. Download Festival

Download is a British-created rock festival, showcasing headliners such as Iron Maiden, Korn, The Offspring, Deftones and many, many more. Given its status as a hard rock/metal fest, it seems only appropriate to dress darker and grungier.

Band tees are absolutely key, particularly oversized and vintage (try eBay or Depop), any good rock or metal band will do, but choose your favourite. This can be worn with either a pair of ripped fishnet tights or ripped black denim jeans (DIY!). Shoes wise, choose a heavy combat boot (for mosh pit protection) or some old school Vans.

3. Green Man Festival

The quintessential hippie festival based in South Wales, Green Man has headlined some of the greatest folk and psychedelic rock artists of the current day, such as Super Furry Animals, King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard and Yo La Tengo.

The easy-going vibe of the festival allows for pretty much any style of clothing. From a classic jean to fairy wings, anything goes. I would recommend an ‘out-there’ accessory to pair with any outfit, such as a colourful hat or some goggles.

Another must is face glitter (biodegradable of course), which can jazz up the most boring of outfits. For this festival, go as crazy as you want because there will always be someone in a full animal onesie or fairy costume to make you feel underdressed.

4. Boomtown

Boomtown is a music festival in Hampshire that represents music across the globe with roots in reggae, ska, punk etc. and has had headliners such as Underworld, De La Soul, Wu-Tang Clan and The Specials.

This festival is all about theatrics and visuals, which leaves us at a loss with what to wear to impress. Colour and costume are a big part of this festival, with psychedelic colours to match the music. If in doubt, think rave culture: anything iridescent and eye-catching is perfect for this festival, particularly neon or sequinned two pieces. The brighter, the better.

5. Glastonbury

The universally recognised Glastonbury can be a tricky one, with a huge range of headliners from The Cure, Paul McCartney and Radiohead to Kendrick Lamar, Kanye West and Childish Gambino. The choice of clothing is intimidating, so sometimes simple is best.

For Glastonbury style ideas, I look to festival fashion pioneer Alexa Chung, who manages to look effortlessly stylish every year. What makes her outfits so standout is the simplicity to them. She often sports a pair of blue denim loose-fit jeans with a graphic tee and some Hunters wellies, a perfect universal festival fit. If you’re wanting to spice this up, you can apply a red lip or try a fun updo. Sometimes classic is better.

Have fun with it!

With everything opening up, it’s your chance to try something new, be that a hat or face glitter, and festivals are 100% the place to do this! The most important part of any music festival is having fun, incorporate your personal style into everything that you wear.

If you feel your best, you will look your best.


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