Festival dressing: the mere thought of it brings me out in a cold, cold sweat. Get it right and you’re the belle of the festival arena stomping until the early hours of the morning, get it wrong and you’re doomed to chafing, blistering and sunburn and an early night under the stars. Some of you may be heading to Reading and Leeds Festivals this weekend, so I wonder if you can relate. I’ve attended many festivals and, each time, have faced the same, ‘But, WHAT, what do I wear?’ dilemma. This year, attendingKendal Callingwas no different. Discovering comfortable festival wear for the introvert is no easy task!
With only five days to prepare, I went online to find a solution to my dilemma: I envisioned finding a bohemian styled outfit but would negotiate for a Sixties swing dress winged my way. As an introvert,I’m not interested in showing any thigh so when I looked at various festival fashion ranges, the overwhelming suggestion was HOT PANTS! Over the past ten years, I’ve seen more rump squeezed in and flaunted at festivals than any butcher’s guild could shake a stick at. Trust me, hot pants was not going to cut it.
You know that feeling when you know you have plenty of clothes, but for the life of you, you just can’t fathom a suitable outfit? So you search every online outlet you can think of, until deciding that you’re officially cray cray and there MUST be something you already own just waiting in your wardrobe. So, I tried to think logically. Two days outdoors. Two days where all four seasons could make an appearance, and all I could think of was an outfit Roy Cropper would be proud of: WATERPROOFS and LAYERS.
Now, there mightn’t be anything sexy about waterproof raincoats and wellington boots, but then again, blistered, sopping wet feet and chafing isn’t attractive either. Let’s face it, we’re in Britain and it’s odds on that it will always rain when you really don’t want it to. So I decided to dress practically in denim, raincoat and wellington boots. (I’m not going to be featured for my festival style anytime soon but for me, comfort was the most important factor.)
Lordy! I’m officially a mature adult because I’ve just admitted that comfort was my priority! Dressing comfortably is surely a measure of reaching adulthood? You saw this Bellfield denim dress featured in February, but it seemed like the perfect solution for summer festival fashion, especially as it matched my floral Cath Kidston wellies so well. Feeling like Bellfield had come to my rescue in my time of need, I started to eye up their Alexandra jacket. Yes, I already have a raincoat, a shorter length bright yellow affair from Seasalt but what if it poured and poured with rain? Already panicked by the increasing costs of petrol, parking, food and accommodation, you should know Bellfield really did come to my rescue and gifted me this gorgeous jacket and the gift of staying dry! You can expect to see this jacket lots in autumn.
Practicalities scratched off my list, I needed to add a little quirk to my fashion festival so I bought the most ridiculous sunglasses I could find in Primark. Circular, mirrored and adorned with florals, they only cost £1 but I found myself so attached to them I brought them home ready for next summer. Clearly adopting a floral theme, I added my bright Layla Amber accessories and naturally, my floral YMC rucksack.
Comfortable and true to my own personal style, I’m happy with how this outfit came together. Do you find festival dressing a challenge? What’s your go to outfit?
Over the past few months, my charity shop finds have dwindled in number and you’ve seen very few purchases here on the blog. I can’t complain because in July, the charity shop Gods bestowed some amazing thrift luck upon me when I found some key, quality pieces for my autumn wardrobe: a 60’s style Boden skirt, a Topshop trench coat and a Wheels & Dollbaby cardigan, to name but a few. I’m excited for autumn fashion, but I’m still embracing summer. Strangely, it was when I was searching for autumn fashion staples that I chanced upon the souvenir print dress, a dress I’d wanted to buy first-hand- until it sold out.
July saw me browsing in fewer charity shops than ever before; it was a busy month, both socially, home and work wise, with my calendar full of theatre trips, evenings out for tea with friends, Kendal Calling with John, days out with family, decorating our living room: you name it! Nonetheless, it was on a visit to my local hospice shop that I found the souvenir print shirt dress- a dress from River Island’s ‘Chelsea Girl’ range.
Maybe it’s my yearning for a holiday in the sun that made me take the dress from the rack to look at its bright, holiday themed print? Maybe it was the fact that it’s a midi length dress (perfect for the ever-changing English summer)? In reality, it was Willowbrook’s half price sale that cast the final vote and saw me take it home for £2.50. Yes, £2.50. Brand new, I suspect, and perfectly fitting.
// Souvenir Print Shirt Dress :: Willowbrook Hospice, originally River Island ‘Chelsea Girl //
// Suitcase novelty bag & snail ring :: both Accessorize //
// ‘Mermaids have more fun’ necklace :: Punky Pins //
I wore this outfit on Friday when John and I decided to have an impromptu day out in Ormskirk (you might have heard of it as it’s the home of Edge Hill University). As John had time booked off, I thought I’d join him and we started the long, lazy weekend by stopping by our favourite bistro for lunch and searching for mid-century finds in Ormskirk’s numerous charity shops. We aimed to finish with a coffee at Ormskirk’s latest, and hippest, coffee shop, Cobble, but the English weather had other ideas and we found it too warm to be drinking lattes. Although we didn’t find any mid-century furniture finds, we did find a dinosaur teapot! After the disappointment of not being able to find ‘that’ Morrison’s planter, we’ve decided to buy a succulent and make our very own version for a snippet of the price and a donation to charity. Even though I wasn’t supposed to be looking at clothes, how could I not? I found a vintage style handmade dress with a delicate, embroidered collar for just £1. I can’t wait to feature it, until then, Instagram Stories?
You know how I pledged to make 2016 a year of action, a year where I’d make some positive changes in my life? Do more, work less, see more, worry less? Well, last weekend, I was able to add a little more action to my 2016 list of adventures when I was invited to Kendal Calling 2016. And, if you want even more action, I’m adding a mini vlog to the end of this post (yes, my first ever!)
Located in Lowther Park, in the heart of the scenic Lake District, Kendal Calling 2016 is a relatively short 70-mile drive north up the M6. John and I are always up for a change of scenery at the weekend (although having never camped together, we made sure to book a B&B for Saturday evening!) Arriving just after midday, we were greeted with a festival awash with colour.
Invited to Kendal Calling on behalf of the kind folk over at Emmi Caffe Latte who are all about adding a little more yay to your day, we made their yurt our first stop to sample coffee cocktails. As a coffee enthusiast, I found them delicious- especially the YayPout (imagine a juice version of a coffee chocolate orange and you’re halfway there!) Before heading back into the arena, we took advantage of the photobooth to capture our #makeitayayday moment! Then it was time to truly experience Kendal Calling 2016!
In the arena, our festival highlights included:
Raised hands, jumping in the air to the rhythm of the infectious ‘Flame’ by Sundara Karma in the Calling Out tent whilst singing, “Hold. My. Flame and set alight.”
Noel Gallagher’s disbelief at Yorkshire Day, “You’ve got your own day? Get to f**k.”
Justin Hawkins of The Darkness in that spandex suit, “We’re going to do some hits from 2003, because who wants to hear the songs no-one bought?”
The Sugarhill Gang, “Apache, jump on it!”
Listening to Spring King whilst eating Katsu Curry sitting on the mount outside the Calling Out tent.
Discovering we knew more Kelis songs than we ever thought possible.
The taste of a pint of ice cold Strongbow Dark Fruits after the long drive. Ah!
Exploring ‘Lost Eden’ a whole woodland area of Kendal Calling I’d never seen before featuring artwork and installations.
The luxury of festival hospitality toilets, no Shewee needed this time!
…and, here’s how Kendal Calling looked on film!
We had a truly wonderful weekend away in the Lake District- I can’t believe it took me three years to return to Kendal Calling! So much so, we’re already planning a return trip to a festival in 2017!
*We were invited to Kendal Calling on behalf of Emmi Caffe Latte, our festival tickets were complimentary*