LUX: a look at the emerging trends of festival fashion

by Logan Howell

Neon colors, chain harnesses and powerful boots showcase the emerging trends of festival fashion.

Music and fashion go together like Mick Jagger and a leather jacket. Each musical genre attracts different crowds and unique styles. Punk rockers, hip-hop artists, and popstars serve as influential style icons, and attending live concerts provides an opportunity to experience their aura and get inspired.

Especially in the last ten years music festivals have begun to take up more of the fashion spotlight. Over several days of a festival, different genres, people, and styles blend together, generating trends. As a result of large festivals becoming more profit-orientated, some have become ultra-commercialized events.

One of the most famous is Coachella, a two-weekend event in Indio, Ca. Since 2013 it has been averaging 105,000 daily attendees. At its peak, Cochella’s signature bohemian style overflowed onto runways like Saint Laurent and Emilio Pucci as lavish renditions of gladiator sandals, fringed sheepskin, and crocheted tops.

Coachella became a mecca for anyone aspiring to be seen in the same place as their favorite celebrities, searching for fifteen minutes of fame and the perfect instagrammable moment to document their meticulously curated outfit.

While high-profile events fill the need for your next instagram post, others music lovers are looking for places where creativity can flow freely. Created as a way to escape from an over-commercialized world, smaller, lesser-known festivals are becoming popular. This is due to their ethos of community and creation of meaningful experiences. A focus on self-expression encourages one to wear their personality however they wish.

“It welcomes every type of body type that there is. People are healthy, they’re dancing and loving themselves,” Briauna Pope said, an attendee of the new electronic dance festival Bass Canyon.

“I think I’ve had the best experience there because it’s freeing. There’s a good sense of community there. Festivals tie into the idea of self-love and self-acceptance and respect for other people,” Pope said.

At events like these new styles are emerging unapologetically, trends popularized by counter-cultures like Burning Man. Steampunk goggles, psychedelic scarves, and celestial capes make their way into the mainstream as people search for new forms of expression.

One place where these trends thrive is at Lightning in a Bottle in San Antonio, Ca. According to the ethos statement of Lighting in a Bottle, the festival values sustainability, harm reduction, cultural respect, and most of all, creating an environment for extraordinary experiences.

They combine big name headliners and a carefree atmosphere with spiritual meditation classes, motivational speakers, and wellness workshops. People travel from across the country to see their favorite artists while finding holistic meaning in the exact same day.

These emerging music festivals focusing on transcendence rather than commercialization are able to remain authentic. Each year they draw more patrons seeking not just a fantastic concert but also a life changing experience.

Along with these creative environments come bold and exciting styles. Whether someone is rocking the newest drop from their favorite hype brand, showing-off a classic high-fashion piece, or threw on a thrift-store gem, festivals and concerts are their own fashion show and anyone can walk the runway. The greatest joy of fashion is getting to show off oneself, and it’s far more enjoyable when surrounded by those who appreciate it.