Unlike some of the other high-profile music festivals, such as Coachella and Governor’s Ball, almost all of the eighty-thousand people who attend the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Manchester, Tennessee camp out in tents for the four-day extravaganza. This in no way eliminates fashion from the Bonnaroo scene, but it presents a challenge to festival fashion-enthusiasts who want to endure Roo in style. Comfort can’t be neglected when dressing for Bonnaroo and other festivals of its kind. Please enjoy these photos from my Bonnaroo 2014 experience (taken by Matt McKenna, kind strangers, and yours truly) and my list of key items and products and styles for the festival fashionista.
On the road I wore the lightweight Groceries Apparel ‘Wolff’ top, coated high-rise J Brand skinnies, a vintage necklace, MARC by Marc Jacobs combat boots, and my Oliver Peoples sunglasses.
American Apparel California Select vintage halter top, Carmar denim shorts, Birkenstock “Gizeh” sandals, and an authentic Wayuu bag: Structured, comfortable sandals like Birkenstocks are necessary for the more rigorous festival, where you’ll spend most of your time on-foot. Don’t make the mistake of relying on flimsy flip-flops.
Vintage Oscar de la Renta silk kimono dress from Nasty Gal, printed turband from LF Stores, Chanel sunglasses.
Helmut Lang tank, Millau perforated faux leather running shorts, BAGGU printed tote, MARC by Marc Jacobs sweatshirt and combat boots. To maintain your hair at a festival, be sure to bring dry shampoo. Oscar Blandi makes some great products, but Oribe has a dry shampoo alternative that doesn’t leave visible residue in your hair. Since roots tend to get oily while ends dry out in the sun, give dry conditioner a try, focusing on the ends of your hair.
Brixton ‘Joanna’ hat from Nasty Gal, crop top from Urban Outfitters, Millau shorts, MARC by Marc Jacobs combat boots: running shorts in fun prints or textiles and combat boots were the definite MVPs of Bonnaroo this year.
Be prepared for and positive about the possibility of rain. Poncho from Urban Outfitters, sunglasses from Walmart.
Since most festivals are blazing hot during the day, the nighttime chill can come as a shock. Bring soft tops that you can tie up in the heat and let down for more coverage once the sun goes down.
My soft, high-waisted boyfriend jeans were the unsung heroes of my festival wardrobe.
Floral crown from GoJane.com, Quay Australia sunglasses.
Silk aztec-printed dress from LF Stores, Le Specs sunglasses: so you can sit and dance comfortably in lightweight frocks, try wearing white Nike Pro Combat compression shorts underneath.
“Chi Chi” top from Nasty Gal, wooden necklace and high-waist shorts from American Apparel, lilac headband from LF Stores, Chanel sunglasses.
Wide-brimmed hats, fanny packs, and anything tie-dye are festival essentials.
Please excuse my awkward tan/burn lines and shoebee status, and just focus on this awesome Wildfox Couture halter bikini with rainbow briefs. A cute bathing suit top can easily serve as your outfit of the day. I really don’t think I need to explain the greatness of Adidas original Pool Side sandals, do I?
A gel manicure is a must for the rougher festival scene, unless you want to spend your days staring at the dirt underneath your nails. Take it as an opportunity to try some fun new nail art. And if you hate to go without lip color, but also hate the feel of makeup caking and baking in the sun, try a Revlon Color Burst balm stain. It moisturizes and feels like a regular lip balm, and actually lasts longer than most lipsticks. Miley Cyrus and the ongoing 90s fashion revival caused the double-bun look be a popular choice at Bonnaroo this year. It’s playful, and keeps your hair out of the way.
That’s all, folks.