In a field of your own

With Glastonbury looming, now is the time to create a wardrobe for all this summer’s events. Stephanie Smith has advice.


You’re never to old to rock ‘n’ roll… but boy, sometimes it really does feel that way.

Festival envy is an increasingly common condition afflicting many middle-aged people who consider themselves far too old to be jumping about in muddy fields alongside thousands of teens and 20-somethings (quite right, too), but feel mild, stabbing pangs of wistful jealousy when they watch or listen to summer music festivals on the TV or radio.

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Glastonbury kicks off this coming Wednesday and runs until Sunday, with the headline acts from Friday on the Pyramid stage, including The Arctic Monkeys, The Rolling Stones, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds, Elvis Costello, Rufus Wainwright and Billy Bragg (and plenty other newer, though certainly not shinier solo artists and popular beat combos – Rita Ora, Dizzee Rascal, Jake Bugg etc).

It’s not just the music and the mud. Fashion is an essential part of the outdoor festival mix, whatever type of event you’re talking about. It’s a chance to show how you can adapt your style to meet all-weather conditions. Festival fashionistas such as Kate Moss and Sienna Miller have been meeting the challenge for years, inspiring the rest of us to pull out all the style stops for outdoor events.

The stock festival look of Hunter wellies teamed with cut-off shorts is not for everyone, but it has come about at major music festivals such as Glastonbury through pure practicality – you get muddy, you wash off mud, you dry off fairly quickly. Check out vintage shops and fairs for cut-off shorts (try Cow vintage shop in Sheffield).

A maxi is a no-no if there is mud or rain, so choose a shorter, loose-fitting cotton dress instead. If you don’t do shorts, do cropped jeans or leggings, or cotton tunics with shorts under.

Wellies are useful, but so are plastic sandals, although they need to be sturdy and with toe coverage if possible. A rain-proof covering is essential and a transparent cagoule style ideal, to show off all the bright colours, bold prints and fancy florals you’ll be wearing underneath. Don’t forget a cross-body bag. A floral hair garland makes a statement (see Rock ‘N’ Rose), so put flowers in your hair and get ready to rock… or maybe just sway gently.

Twitter: @yorkshirefashQ

Fashion assistant: Megan Sutton.