THE BLOG

London Festival Fashion Forecast

09/08/2016 15:53

As the sun begins to set and the mud begins to dry, what fashion tips can we take away before the festival season comes to an end?

It's summer and the unavoidable festival fashion guides have emerged in full force, pushing the same old recommendations for wellies, fringed suede and aviators. But most of these only cater for the standard three-day riot of mud, rain and music.

City festivals are happening in all corners of the capital. A different beast from your average field weekender, they require a totally different uniform.

Here are four solid sartorial suggestions for the remaining London festivals of 2016, based on the biggest and best line-ups the city had to offer at the start of the season.

1.
The look: Swathed in chiffon

As seen at: British Summer Time

Before a sea of writhing adolescents, Florence Welch emerged with the severe elegance and sculpted features of a nautical wooden figurehead - after all, she built her ship to wreck. Commanding man and Machine, she billowed and bellowed across Hyde Park in her sheer blue robes; how big, how blue, how beautiful. She showed us how it's done.

Chiffon is wafting into the summer festival scene from the most unlikely angles; Radiohead may not be on any UK lineups this year, but you're sure to see one of their Moon Shaped Pool scarves adorning the neck of many a discerning gig-goer. Chances to prance around in see-through ruffles while the sun shines and seventies styles reign supreme are scarce--seize the moment and a sheer floaty shirt.

The vibe: Family-friendly fun in a big field, big acts and more pop-ups than you can shake a tenner at.
You can still wear it to: OnBlackheath

2.
The look: No edge is the new edge

As seen at: Summer Series at Somerset House

Somerset House's Summer Series is altogether more sophisticated than your average midsummer romp. Thankfully, Benjamin Clementine's performance at the event has proven that whatever 'smart casual' is in 2016, it doesn't have to involve amputation by drainpipes.

Taking the stage, it was apparent that the sharpness of Clementine's cheekbones is rivalled only by the sharpness of his style. He showed us it's cool to switch shredded skinnies for a superior pair of straight-cut raw denim jeans.

Focus on care over tear, leave the farmyard chic to Glastonbury, and hone your courtyard finesse. If you decide to make the raw denimvestment, know what you're literally getting yourself into. Prepare to not wash your jeans. While you're coming to terms with that bombshell, console yourself with the knowledge that a festival is the ideal place to break them in. Care for them correctly and they'll be your campsite companion for decades.

The vibe: The venue may be fancy as, but don't be afraid to dress down.
You can still wear it to: Caught by the River Thames

3.
The look: Eyewear - more frame, more game

As seen at: Lovebox

Sunglasses, generally speaking, are never not cool. You'd be hard pressed to find a festival which created an exception to this rule. What separates city festivals from their bucolic counterparts is the quality of eyewear present. It is neither the time or the place for gimmicky guitar shaped frames, and the less said about Kanye's formerly beloved shutter shades the better.

At Lovebox, an event where notorious nocturnal headliners begin their sets at 10am, sunglasses may well pull double duty. They'll both offer you protection from the dreaded sunlight, and some much-needed cover for those dilated pupils and bloodshot eyes just in time for LCD Soundsystem. You could even get away with some trippier-looking mirror lenses, provided your electropop cool is on par with MØ.

The vibe: Dancing yrself clean while trying not to lose your edge--or all your friends--in 86.18 hectares of open space.
You can still wear it to: Moondance Festival

4.
The look: Built for comfort

As seen at: Citadel

The one thing that cannot be stressed enough: do not wear dungarees. Whichever way you cut it, portaloos are foul, and undoing your dungarees may well result in half your outfit trailing on the floor--or worse, dangling into the toilet itself.

Instead, stick to not-too-short denim shorts or indeed skirts. Contrary to what's almost immediately evident at most festivals, dressing for comfort isn't something you have to save until your forties. In fact, without comfy garms your festival experience may be somewhat tainted. Imagine not being able to lose yourself to the honey sweet ambience of Caribou, or sway to the beautiful sounds of Lianne La Havas without chafing. That's an experience we could all do without.

The vibe: Hackney goes mainstream...ish.
You can still wear it to: Visions Festival

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