Festival Fashion

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What do people wear to a full on balls up festival? Farked if I know. This is my first real fest. 4 days, 3 nights. Hot days, cold nights, mud and limited luggage space. It wasn’t exactly Sunburst at Bukit Kiara Equestrian Park or Gilles Peterson’s Worldwide Festival at Fort Canning Park. No nipping back home, no popping into the shop for a forgotten item….

Even enroute the fashion tribes had spoken. The Spendiforous crew and I stopped off at a service station. As did almost everyone on the way to the Woodford venue and from what I could tell, if you were a guy, there were 2 ways to do this….

Dress like Cobrasnake.




Or make like the band. This can be done several ways. Tee, small leather/pleather jacket, tight jeans. Or plaid/check shirt/tight jeans. Like the guy in red plaid shirt.

Then top with sunnies. Like the guy in blue.

I mean this look is a pick up line without opening your mouth. Who needs the requisite flash car or fancy watch, when you have this prized look. He could own a smelly tent and the change in his pocket for all I know but I’m betting he didn’t sleep alone at night. And I couldn’t turn around the venue without thinking “Are you with the band?”. There were Vampire Weekend and The Strokes clones everywhere….


Still for some this is too much effort. It also requires a semi-lithe body and a decent face.  For those that don’t have those attributes you need a gimmick. A hat is most certainly that gimmick. I mean look at this girl, she’s looking straight at the guys who are wearing hats, isn’t she?

 And then there are the funny hats. Demonstrating that:

1. You don’t take yourself too seriously

2. You are approachable. 

With a funny hat, the girls can do all the work because a funny hat is a conversation starter. Whether she says “Ooh, I like your hat!” Or “Oh, you look like a complete ponce in that hat!” it doesn’t really matter. It’s still an “in”.

This particular combo says to me “Animal Faceoff: Panda vs Tiger” Panda wins!!” This would never happen in nature.


Pyjama Pants

Okay before I move on I have to say I saw a few of these on my watch and I’m kind of on the fence about them. I am talking about pyjama pants. Guys and girls rocked them, usually with a tank top or tee. And on the festival field they worked! In fact I felt enormous respect that someone had the balls/tits to wear this stuff outside of their home after hitting puberty. These are the kind of people the army should conscript. Because that is bravery. Putting yourself on the line like that, acting like a winner…. Still, I have a sneaking suspicin that back in the real world if you rocked up in your pjs I’d probably slip you a a dollar and direct you to a soup kitchen.

THis gys also rocks the pyjama bottoms trend but I reckon he wears it better. That could also be because he is sitting down and you are not seeing him in his full pyjama-ed glory. In fact, he might even be hiding…. Hmmm. 


For the womenfolk, the key thing here is “practicality”, and “owning it”. The latter is a fashion cliche and I hate rolling those out because really, they belong in a Ben Stiller movie….


The Floral Dress
The biggest look had to be the short flirty floral dress, preferably with cut out back. Like the kind you find at Topshop or Cotton On. Before Splendour I had began to tire of them. Because in KL if you wear those too often you look like a overdosed on Mad Men and are a delusional Betty Draper-wannabe or you are on the way to a teddybear’s picnic. But now I have renewed interest in them, especially when worn with boots. Watch out Don Draper and teddybears!!


Denim Shorts
The other big look was the ripped denim shorts look. Which I always thought was a big trashy for work, but make complete sense at Splendour. So hey I can say I got to wear trashy shorts to work! Having the palest legs ever, I did wanna throw on some leggings or tights which quite a lot of girls did, but the truth it it was too damn hot in the day time, so unless I fancied taking home a yeast infection as a souvineer….

I should add that Australian girls are beautiful! Even at 9am in the morning, queuing up for the toilet/shower with nary a lick of makeup on, wearing whatever shapeless sack they could reach for, following a long day or drinking and a late one bouncing around to bands and DJs the night before  – they still looked like they were queueing up for their shot at Australia’s Next Top Model. I’d say life wasn’t fair but then again I was at Splendour wasn’t I? Someone must love me….


Gum Boots
It threatened rain the entire weekend but fortituously it blew over every time. Nevertheless, wellies, or gum boots as the natives refer to them as, were an essential. Because when you have 30,000 people traipsing up and down the countryside, it is gonna get squelchy underfoot. With skulls or flowers emblazoned on them, black or in bright colours, Gum Boots were inescapable. Air Asia X even bought us a pair as part of our survival kit. And you could coordinate them with anything, they still looked rad. And at a fraction of the cost of a pair of Laboutins. Who knew farmers would one day be fashion icons, eh?….


Flip Flops
You could also go the complete opposite and wear flip flops (also confusingly called thongs). Conveniently the festival venue had its own Havaianas dispenser.

Ok, now a test. Any CSI fan should have spotted the common item in many of these pictures. C’mon…. Pretend you are Hodges and all these people in the pictures were murdered. What was it that the muderer wanted? Well, here’s a tip, you freaking four-eyed freak! Get it? Four eyes….

Yes, shades were plastered across faces everywhere! The most popular choice: Rayban wayfarers in black followed by various colour variants and then the florals. Then came the aviators. I came prepared and actually packed both. The hipper-than-the-hipsters, were one step ahead still and wore the Clubmasters. Gah! Foiled yet again…. Still whatever shape they came in you had to love em. Not just a a practical (for warding off the sun), you could hiding last night’s baggage under them.



And now to my favourite festival outfit of all. I’ve saved the very best for last….

I frikkin love costumes and there were heaps! Environmental police, cows, guys in big bright suits. Pandas were especially popular. And this one is the best of the lot! Right down to the alternating black and white body. It’s even got white panda feet!! Sadly this particular panda is obviously lost and can’t find its way back to China…. Bless.


Air Asia X flew me into the Gold Coast for Splendour In The Grass. They fly to Gold Coast daily, with departures from LCCT KL and Coolangatta airport. Book your tix now at www.airasia.com and ask for the lie flat beds!