When I think about music festival style, a few things automatically come to mind: denim cut-offs, flower headbands, fringe vests, bohemian frocks, strappy tank tops, fedoras. Festival fashion, for better or worse, definitely has its back-pocket trends that always return with a vengeance when all the summer staples officially begin.
Up ahead, I will bend the rules of "festival fashion" to rethink some key pieces you should consider packing when it's time to hit the road for the forthcoming music-imbibing months. You may even want to keep some of these in your "every day" ensembles. And, keep items like micro shorts, triangle bikini tops, sheer overlays, and kimono jackets in your closet... or in the donation bin. This year, it's time to update festival style in fresher, more unexpected and grown up ways.
The Printed Moto Jacket
Upcoming events such as Electric forest bring a certain type of crowd. The fans are more low-key, they're more about actual camping (than, say, glamping), and they're down with lazing around on the sprawling grass to hear the music rather than getting super-close to the stage. In a word, the scene is chill but eccentric and unexpecting— and the weather can be a bit, too. So, pick up a printed moto topper instead of the tired jean jacket. It will keep you layered and colorfully savvy in a crowd of baja sweaters and tie-dye T-shirts without looking like you're trying too hard.
The Bustier Swim Top
The weather in early summertime can be funny wherever you go in the midwest (and not in a good way). It might either be hot and humid in the upper 80s, or it might unexpectedly downpour with heavy summer showers. Yep, fun times. But, as they say, the show must go on, so do your best to prepare. Opt for a great swim top in the style of a bustier or crop tank - something that can easily pass for a regular top - that will dry quickly if the weather gods decide to punish us with rain.
The Rave-On Pants
Summer is truly a raver's paradise in Michigan and beyond— it's no wonder night owls flock to ragers far and wide. With all the DJs and untz-untz to carry you into daybreak, you can skip the typical neon. Instead, opt for a dizzying, wildly-patterned pant — one that doesn't sacrifice on color — that will keep you comfortably moving all night long in the dance pit. Or switch it up and pair an airy solid colored cotton pant and a bright top. Be your own boss!
The Fringe-tastic Skirt
You can't go to a music festival without running into some kind of fringe. But, even with its ubiquity, it's still a tricky trend to pull off, which is why it's donned mostly on handbags or accented on a suede jacket. But if you ask me, I'm in the camp of go hard or go home when it comes to trends. This year, pull up a multi-tiered fringe skirt and channel your inner flapper when getting down to the next show at Founders or try it out at the farmer's market! And, to combat the eccentric Michigan weather, throw on a chubby cropped fur coat as the perfect, lifesaver layer for when the Lake Michigan chill starts creeping into the evening.
The Jump-Around Sandal
Michigan summers in Grand Rapids is not the kind of situation where you'd want to be wearing closed-toe shoes or booties in the thick of summer. But, there's a reason why most people choose to wear chunkier footwear during their favorite concerts: Dancing in thin-soled flip flops is not really a good look and will create an even worse look on your tooties for days to come. Not to mention, they're terribly uncomfortable after a few sets. This year, strap on a pair of flat, heel-back sandals that are perfect for jumping around, rocking out, head-banging, and all the dance moves your feet desire. My go to's this summer are my Sanuk Yoga sling backs. Try them and you'll never want to wear anything again.