Photo-Illustration: by The Cut; Photos: Courtesy of the Subjects

If the more understated, comfort-forward looks we saw at Coachella this year are any indication, festival style itself is undergoing a major shift. Out are the flower crowns and boho-chic fringe of years past, and in are sporty silhouettes, sneakers and other sensible shoes, and leather and denim layers to keep warm.

There’s no shortage of festivals this summer: Governors Ball, Primavera Sound, Glastonbury. So we’ve enlisted a trio of experts to share their experiences and top tips for festival dressing.

Courtney Trop, blogger turned stylist

Favorite festival: Coachella in 2009. “It was the indie-sleaze era and the headliners were Miike Snow, Hot Chip; I think Passion Pit played.”

Photo: Courtesy of the Subject

Sophia Wilson, New York–based photographer

Favorite festival: Afropunk. “It’s amazing to see other Black creatives in such abundance dressed to the nines, and I love seeing the different hairstyles there.”

Tavia Bonetti, model and founder of cheeky L.A. label Friends With Animals

Favorite festival: Sasquatch. “I started my music-festival journey when I was in early high school going to Sasquatch with my parents,” she says. “Since then I’ve been to Osheaga, Ultra, Pemberton fest, and Coachella back to back for 12 years now.”

“The fun stuff typically happens at night. It gets really cold, and people aren’t prepared for that,” says Trop. “You don’t have fun when you’re freezing.” Wilson agrees and reminds us not to forget sunglasses: “It gets so sunny and for festivals that are in the desert, the wind can get really crazy, blowing dust into your face and in your eyes,” she says, recommending light-colored lenses that can stay on indoors and at night. “If you have sunglasses and maybe a handkerchief or a scarf to put over your nose, it really saves your life.” Bonetti says it’s all about the footwear: “Wear a comfortable shoe that will last all day and be classic enough to match with the random sweater or jacket you will potentially be borrowing later on,” she says. “I’ve been rocking some sort of Adidas skate shoe or basketball shoe.”

Festival style does not have to be flower crowns and fringe. “It doesn’t translate on everybody, and it doesn’t need to,” says Trop. “Make something look cool at a festival that’s within your own style.” When in doubt, pull out something tried and true: “I like wearing things that are already in my closet. This last Coachella, I decided to go the day before and I wore this little vintage Vivienne Westwood dress that I’ve worn to festivals a bunch. I wear a lot of Miu Miu, and the year before I wore Miu Miu.”

“Because it’s annoying to carry a heavy bag,” says Wilson, suggesting vintage Diesel cargo pants because they’re not too bulky. “I’ve also been eyeing these 2000s Prada nylon waist-belt bags recently. There’s a billion ways you can wear them.” Bonetti brings one that can at least fit some extra layers, though: “Having a small bag that fits a sweater or a piece that can be multifunctional going from day to night helps,” she says. “My go-to bag for festivals has to be my vintage Levi’s mini jean purse. It’s the perfect size, and I’ve yet to find an outfit that it doesn’t work with.”

“A tampon, Aquaphor, I always keep a high-protein energy bar since I’m out all day,” Wilson says while going through her bag. “Mints, Make Up Forever lip liner, but I also really like that Italian brand Espressoh. For night time, hair ties and bobby pins, because if your hair comes undone that’s a disaster, and CBD oil because I get anxious in crowded spaces.” Always inside Bonetti’s bag are “five different lipsticks, a lip liner that functions as a freckle maker, an eyelash curler, and a Canon point and shoot,” she says.

“This year I wore a skirt from Friends With Animals that I made,” says Bonetti. “It’s a mini puff skirt that unties into a full-length tiered lace skirt. I plan to make this in dress form with attachable sleeves — two looks in one and it keeps you warm but still cute when the temperature starts to drop.” Trop agrees: “One of my favorite looks I wore was this burnt-orange Chloé suit. It was velvet with little white horses on it. During the day, I wore it with a bandeau, and at night when it got cold I put on the blazer. That’s not a typical festival outfit, but I wore it with flat boots and it looked really chic.”

“One year I had my friend make me a custom mesh sweatsuit, which was a turning point for me as the white mesh kept me not too hot in the day and warm enough for the night,” says Bonetti. “I think since then that’s my main thinking behind any outfit for a festival — if you’re going to be there for the long haul, you have to come prepared.” For Trop, it’s all about style: “I was in my early 20s when I went to my first festival, and I’m 37 now,” she says. “My style has definitely evolved since then. It’s more tailored. I wear a lot of black and darker colors. My style is definitely more grungy, a little harder.”





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