Although I adore crochet, a full on dress layered over a teeny bikini isn’t exactly my idea of an ideal outfit for a music festival. Don’t get me wrong- I adore ogling photos from Coachella and Lolla, marveling at the creative concoctions those in the teen and twenty set devise. For me, festival fashion is about self-expression mixed with the practicality that comes hand in hand with spending hours in a field crammed with other revelers. Stilettos have no skin in this game, swapped out for comfy, colorful flats. Clutches are swapped for cross body bags. I am heading to music festivals the next three weekend- Winnetka Music Festival this weekend, Counting Crows at Ravinia next weekend then SNOOP at Summerfest in Milwaukee the following weekend. Take a look at my music festival fashion for real women, and let your creative side show when pulling your outfit together.
Platforms, kitten heels, and wedges are three styles that you won’t see at a music festival. Trade them in for something FLAT and comfy. Going for a more athletic look? Sneakers are totally acceptable. Kickin’ it country? Cowboy boots + a skirt is adorable. Looking for a little more haute hippie? Ankle tie sandals are it. Target has a pair for under $25 that are highly rated and come in brown or black.
From fedoras to floppy-brimmed to bucket style, a hat is an accessory that can keep the sun out of your face and potential rain out of your ‘do. I have a packable fedora that is perfect to pop in my purse and comes with a few elastic bands to coordinate with your outfit- here is one on Amazon that is less than $20 and comes in a range of colors.
I don’t think I pull out a pair of pants once the weather hits 70 in the Midwest, and music festival fashion isn’t an exception to that rule. I am such a fan of a swishy, floaty dress made for moving along to the music. I favor loose maxi dresses to work with sitting/standing/dancing in any pattern from bold tie dye to feminine florals to ikat prints. One super secret place I have found for music festival fashion for real women is Cost Plus World Market. They have dresses, skirts, tops and pants in natural fabrics, perfect for the warm, humid weather that usually accompanies music festivals. And, I have never mat a caftan that I didn’t love- every time I encounter one I have this impulse where I just HAVE to have it…and World Market has some fantastic breezy prints. PLUS- most clothing items are under $40, and a chunk of their jewelry is under $10.
Is there any event where a denim jacket is NOT appropriate? I adore mine- it has a frayed hem on the waist and cuffs as well as a lot of give so I can move. Mine was from NYDJ and appears to be sold out, but a classic denim jacket perfect for music festival fashion is from Madewell- it has a fitted look without being constrictive (but runs small so size up). This one will last you for years and become your BWF (best wardrobe friend).
Yep, you gotta have these to throw some shade during sets, and also for the next morning ’cause it comes real early. I have been obsessed with the Quay x JLo collection, mainly because she and A-Rod look adorable together as models. The REINA is fashion-forward without being too trendy, a modern take on the retro cat eye and for $60 this is mid-range affordable. Majorly chunky square acetate styles are in as well, and Quay has some affordable ones that fit the bill.
Before bringing your favorite tote, check the bag policy on your music festival’s website. For example, Lolla only allows bags that don’t exceed 14″ x 11″ x 5″ and they can only have ONE pocket or opening. Yep, pretty specific. Now, here is where crochet or macrame comes into play- I love the over the shoulder bags that you can sling around and dump tons of must-haves into (sunscreen, water bottle, secret flask…just kidding). Anthro has a cute tote bag that doubles as your purse this summer, and it is on sale for under $50.
Another adorable summer bag that is uber-affordable is this Macrame Hobo from TJ Maxx…and it is under $30:
Not gonna lie, I pretty much stopped buying jewelry at this point- it is all about the rental. I use Rocksbox and for $21/month I get three pieces of jewelry (necklaces, bracelets, earrings or rings) and can swap them at any time. You can also purchase at a discount if you want to keep them, or send ’em on back if they are only meant to stay for a vaca. Want a free month? Click on the link here. My festival fashion for real women style ensures that your earrings don’t weigh down your lobes, and can transition seamlessly into other looks throughout the summer. Here are the earrings I just purchased from my last set, perfect lightweight leather feathers:
How do you style your festival fashion? Are you Cali Desert? Hippie hobo? Athleisure meets futuristic? Can’t wait to see you at all of the fabulous festivals around town!
Cheers to summer sun, good music, and easy breezy effortless festival fashion.
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The only thing I would change about this is changing the bag to a belt bag. Aka fanny pack. I used one at a music festival for the first time this year and it was a game changer.
Ahhhh good call!!! I bought a belt bag, a swank one, and it turned out to be so teeny and cute that it DIDN’T FIT MY IPHONE. I mean, come on. I need to just go for the one that actually fits my crap.