ACL Fest, Austin, CUSP by Neiman Marcus, festival style, live music, music festivals, outdoor concert dressing, R29 Style Festival, Simon Malls, SXSW
Living in Austin, a.k.a. the Live Music Capital of the World, concerts are a regular part of life. Besides hosting widely acclaimed mega-festivals such as ACL Fest and SXSW, there are more live music venues per capita here than any other place on Earth. You can even stumble upon free shows (GOOD ones, too!) at the local grocery store. Safe to say, us Austin gals know our festival style.
Let me preface: I’m not hipster or boho or rocker-chic or whatever-enough to pull of those badass outdoor festival looks a la Coachella. I never go costume-y; I just dress like a more eclectic artsy version of myself. Also, now that I’m in my 30s and have a tiny breastfeeding babe at home, gone are the days of raging for a 2-day outdoor live music scene. –That ish requires a more utilitarian/camper-girl uniform aimed at enduring the heat & other smelly sweaty conditions in order to survive until the headliner each night. Nowadays, I beeline for a tent to stand under, map out exact stage times for my fave bands, and only stay for a set or two.
At the last couple of fashionable festival events I attended, I had the honor of my ‘street-style’ being captured by photographers from some of fashion’s most fabulous retailers. First, let’s talk the biggest media/music gathering around and one of the first big festivals of the year, SX: CUSP by Neiman Marcus was on the scene for #NMMakeSomeNoise and their stylists shared their top ensembles to forecast looks for the rest of festival season 2015. –I was thrilled to find I was included in their list!
Next, came the R29 Style Festival hosted this past weekend weekend at The Domain. It was super innovative and quite interactive: they had a DIY band tee styling station, braid bar, flash tats, and pop-up shops from indie designers. All the fun was capped off by an intimate show by the band MAGIC! If you live in any of the cities remaining on the tour –Miami, Philly, Boston-area, or D.C.– I highly recommend you make it out to this free event. It was pretty cool to see that Simon Malls reposted my Insta from this fest on their web site:
So, if you’re wanting to create a more sophisticated festival style look, I would steer clear of the overdone booty jorts, cut-off tees & combat boots. I tend to gravitate to trousers in a lightweight fabric with a tank & vintage hat or a breezy printed dress topped off by milkmaid braids & sunnies. Other stylish yet fest-functional pieces I love are:
- Kimonos: packs a beautiful sartorial punch & keeps those shoulders from burning
- Booties: keeps those toes grass & mud-free; bonus if they’re faux (because shoes get stained & stepped on at these things)
- Cross-body handbags: Holds essentials so you can throw those hands up in the air
- Recommended packing list: driver’s license, medical insurance card, cash, lip balm, sunblock stick, and Ban Total Refresh Cooling Body Cloths (because you have no idea how handy wipes can be out there! These are awesome & come lightly scented with a powder finish.)
Also, current trends that I think translate well onto the music festival scene are fringe (on boots, bags & more) and tassels (on long necklaces & at the ends of boho sleeves). Whatever festival look you’re going for, don’t leave home without a hat, sunscreen, and closed-toe shoes. Drink lots of water and rock on, ladies!