Here's a brutal truth that no hipster will ever admit: festival dressing is tricky.
You see, the aim is to appear all nonchalant and cool whilst secretly planning and packing for days in advance, streamlining your essential kit into one 'oh, dunno', type bag. And it can total really quite a hefty stash even without all this batsh*t "British Summer" weather we've got going on right now.
Take this weekend - I was at Love Box with team Hoxton Radio. Now. Love Box is a three day festival but you don't actually stay over-night. This has pros and cons. Pro: no tent admin. Con: no base to leave extra layers / spare shoes etc. For me - given my extreme hatred of tents (vile sweatboxes of doom) - the pros far outweigh the cons, but it's personal preference. And I must admit that the experience of leaving Bethnal Green circa 11.30pm on Saturday night amidst a tidal wave of festival-types was slightly stressful.
Anyway. As an unseasoned festival-er, packing was slightly difficult. I just didn't know what to take and asking cooler friends for advice just seemed so deeply unacceptable. Here's what I found you need:
I learnt my lesson filming in Kent last Thursday when I managed to tattoo a t-shirt tan onto my arm: it is really possible to tan / burn / frazzle in the UK. Sunscreen is key, particularly the non-sticky type. Murad do a great Invisiblur one for face, and on body I love Kiehl's.
When I did Park Life with Tigi in Manchester, I took my Longchamp along for the ride. Now. I love Longy. But what I'd brutally failed to recognise was just how unpractical partying with a handbag would be. I've never felt so uncool. Backpacks (I love mine by Vans) / cross-body bags (like my Davina Mulford) are ideal. Or a bumbag if you're feeling really cool.
Hunters are the ONE for mud, but sans bad weather nothing screams festival virgin louder than a clean pair of wellies. And you'll be really sweaty (ew). Sneakers are big this year - and actually, even in the extreme mud of Glastonbury, people like Millie Mac and Leomie Anderson were in Converse, so... I love Victoria Plimsoles - they're Spanish and have a mega array of different colour schemes.
If ever you're going to drop / step on / abuse your phone, it'll be on the last day of a festival, having hitherto managed to nail the whole keeping the screen un-smashed thing. It can't just be me who has a knack for this. Especially if it's an iPhone - they're just so damn breakable. So now I have a Gear4 case - it has crazy awesome shock protection without being bulky. Apparently I can now drop Iggy (the iPhone) from a great height. I haven't quite built up to testing this yet.
I know it's unsexy, but if it rains you'll literally be so happy. Parajumpers have a super bright range for Summer so they double as a statement piece.
At Sandhurst, we were always told to keep an emergency layer of warm kit, just in case. Then there's always something else to fall back on. I didn't quite go this far at Love Box, but I did have a thick Noisy May t-shirt in reserve for when the sun went down.
Because who has time for careful layering? A token long pendant is fun and everso sling-on-able. My pendant au choixe for Love Box was by Engelsrufer, which has a little sound ball that apparently calls my guardian angel when I move it. I got home in one piece so guess it worked?
What're your festival essentials? Let me know in the comments below so I can nail my next festival venture.