Your annual Festival Dressing Guide

Post by CM

Hello people of the tent-dwelling, cider-drinking, music-loving persuasion – festival season is about to kick off, with Body & Soul being only two weekends away and countless others underway after that until September. Excited yet, or chewing your nails over what to bring in your overnight bag? Festival dressing in this emerald isle of ours requires options for all certainties, which include getting things spilled on you, sunburn, soggy feet and careless people getting their flaying limbs caught in your multiple necklaces, or worse, tassle earrings.

When you’ve weathered one too many of these joys over a few years of festival attendance (ie you’re in your 30s and you just can’t be arsed anymore), it’s time to make a change for practicality and comfort, not over, but on a par with style. Let me be your world-weary guide.


You’re at your peak today, and don’t forget it. Make sure you take the majority of your Instagram snaps in the evening’s magic light, when your hair is still fresh and your under-eye circles are still concealable, and wear your most festivally outfit now before you throw away your bangles and feathers in favour of tomorrow’s simple combo.

Day 1 1

Day 1 2


Today you will rise early to fully enjoy the worth of your weekend ticket. You won’t have drunk your whole quota of alcohol, because 1. you’ve learned from that expensive mistake and 2. you also know that the two-day hangover is not worth it. So you’ll be fresh as a daisy (that’s been picked and left in a vase for a day) and ready to face the day of activity. Get out your Batistte and spray that deo (no time to shower!) and pull on your cool, not trying too hard fashion girl outfit. In the daytime go for mom or boyfriend jeans, a tee, sunnies, plimsolls and a light jacket or cardi. You can change into a summer dress in the evening (you may as well), with a big jumper over it to both keep warm and look totes nonchalant. Accessories make the woman, but keep them small and delicate.

Day 2 1

Day 2 2

Day 2 3

Day 2 evening


Your hangover is unavoidable at this stage, and if you aren’t pre-prepared you will make do with wearing what you fell asleep in the night before. So be prepared! Get yourself a pair of leggings and wear those bitches with pride. The dopes shivering in their cut off denim shorts will both hate and envy you in equal measure. You’ll need another t-shirt and jumper for today, just in case, but you could also just recycle them from yesterday if you like to live on the wild side. Let’s face it, you’ll stink anyway ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Day 3 1

Day 3 2


A pac-a-mac, if you aren’t properly prepared with one of the many properly nice rain coats that appear to be in this summer.

A bum-bag (also known as my preferred term, a fanny pack). These too are ironically in (as in, some nice ‘influencer’ who’s also getting on in years has convinced enough people that it’s funny-cool to wear one, when actually they secretly know that they’re actually brilliant and practical and you don’t have to constantly check to see if it’s still there and not swiped by a n’er do well), which is good news for you. Stash your emergency money, phone, lipstick (if you’re clear of skin no other make-up is required, a dash of red lippy on an other-wise no makeup face is the definition of cool. I for one will be wearing a full face of makeup every day, as I always do. )


Dry Shampoo!

Toothbrush and Toothpaste!

Sunscreen (preferably Factor 50)

A big scarf that can be used as multiple things. Actually bring two.

Tights! For when your ‘tan’ becomes patchy after accidentally sleeping on grass.

Spare pair of flip flops

Spare pairs of socks!


Above all, don’t forget that the stars in Coachella whose pics you may have been browsing for festival dressing inspiration are guaranteed to have lovely, warm, dry weather, are in the VIP section and have been decked out by designers and had their hair and faces painted by pros. Your experience will be less luxurious, but more real.


I haven’t forgotten about you. Pay heed to the above checklist (especially the socks item. Especially). All you really need in addition to that is a pair of jeans, 3 changes of t-shirts, sunglasses, trainers and maybe a pair of shorts if you’re that way inclined. Easy peasy.

Men Day 1

Men Day 2

Mens Day 3

If you can fit four flagons of Devil’s Bit and a crate of beer you can fit all that. Go forth, have fun, come back safe and sound and ready for our upcoming post on that other kind of summer festival, the city arts festival – perfect for those who like their own bed and who are averse to midge bites.



  1. Marina

    Love the crochet (crocheted?) top! I need to learn how to do macrame and make a shawl or something, then it’ll be like I can make clothes.
    Do people still wear inappropriate clothing to festivals like Native American headdresses and such? Maybe guides like yours will help them resist the urge.

  2. townmousecountrymouseireland

    Great idea to make your own!
    The whole headdress thing didn’t really make it over this side of the Atlantic, it’s typically been a more layered, bohemian vibe with a feather stuck in the mix here and there. I think the negative associations have begun making their mark though, and a more streamlined (unoffensive!) aesthetic is taking shape 🙂 x CM

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