Festival Style Dos and Don’ts

This weekend, Governor’s Ball descended upon NYC – and I went to Governor’s Island for an art festival instead 🙂  Music festivals can be great, but I’ve been so busy lately that a full day of concerts seemed like way too much.  Summer festival season is just getting started, though, so who knows what the year will bring!  No matter which one you are attending, there are some near-universal tips that will maximize the fun and minimize the potential frustration (an all-too-real possibility when you are surrounded by thousands of people).  Learn from my previous mistakes:

Do go for a statement piece (or three!)  This is not the time for understated.  Festival style is all about bold expression, so try that trend you’ve been eyeing, or wear that one thing in your closet that always feels a bit too much or a regular day.  In this case, too much is just right.  A sequin hooded parka?  Why the hell not!

Don’t wear uncomfortable shoes!  No matter how fly those open toe heels are, you’ll hate them at the end of the day – if they even make it that long without getting ruined.  If you do want to go with heels, I’d strongly suggest a wedge or chunky heel that is less likely to sink into the grass – I have it on good authority that the festival will not pay any invoices sent for ad hoc lawn aeration 😉

Do account for the full range of temperatures. It might be 78 and balmy when you get to the festival at 2:00 pm, but it might get a lot cooler, in a very literal sense, once the sun goes down. You don’t want to have to leave halfway through the headliner because you’re cold and cranky.  Wear non-boring layers and you’ll be set day to night.

Do pick a theme and go for it.  Rose gold everything?  A whole look in shades of blue?  A denim takeover?  All the pastels?  Mesh on mesh on mesh?  Yes!  If you love it, don’t be afraid to really do it up.  More is more, remember?  I’d add some OTT highlighter to this look if I did it again.

Don’t culturally appropriate.  Festival fashion should be about self expression and creativity.  Too often, people think this gives them a license to cherry pick styles and traditions from cultures not their own.  It doesn’t, and you just look like a jerk when you wear a ceremonial headdress as a costume, or try to add “edge” to your style by wearing your hair in a way the originating minority group would be negatively judged for.  If you are not sure whether the style you are considering is appropriative, google writers of that culture and learn the significance of bindis, bantu knots, or whatever it is, and let their writing guide you away from appropriation (and the very real and very justified calling out you might receive otherwise).

Do check for conflicts between your must see artists.  Part of the beauty of a festival is the hearty music lineup, with old faves and new all in one place for your enjoyment.  Unfortunately, sometimes they will also be at the same time, and learning this fact at the last minute will inevitably lead to some hand-wringing, indecision, and time wasted.  Make these hard choices before you go so you don’t have to try to make decisions while sun-fried and tipsy.

Don’t forget to bring enough $$$ for the day!  Everything is overpriced, even the water, but you’ll need to cave and buy some so you don’t dehydrate and end up being one of those people carried off on a stretcher.

Do take all the selfies and outfit photos your heart desires.  Pics or it didn’t happen, amirite? 😉

Outfit details:

Rose gold sequin parka: Boohoo (from their straight size section, but this size 10 fits well on me [a 16/18] and zips up, so could work for larger sizes unzipped as well).

Tank: H&M

Shorts: Fashion to Figure

Rose gold sneakers: Boohoo

Triangle clutch: Boohoo

Octagon sunnies: Eloquii

Thanks Boohoo for inviting me to the Gov Ball pop up!  All thoughts and opinions my own, as always!