Erin Cardiff | Contributing Writer | Friday, 10 April 2015

How to not be a festival fashion dick

Coachella Fashion Dicks You'll Inevitably Encounter On Instagram This Weekend

The Debrief: If you've got a low dickhead threshold, probably best to stay off Instagram this weekend

Our car boots are full of camping chairs, tents and crates of cider, all packed in like a real-life game of Tetris. Superdrugs across the land have been cleared out of dry shampoo and baby wipes. We’ve finally recovered from the repetitive strain injuries we sustained hitting the refresh button in an attempt to buy tickets. 

It may feel as if the mud on our wellies has only just dried from last year’s efforts, but this weekend sees some 90,000 revellers plane, train and automobile it to The Golden State for Coachella 2015. And if like 99.99999% of the people reading this, you haven’t decided to sink a cool £1,000 on a trip to Palm Springs, here are the dickheads you’ll inevitably encounter on Instagram this weekend. 

The glam squad  

I’m going to let you in on a little secret – that whole not showering thing? I kinda like it. There’s something strangely freeing about not having to bother with all that basic hygiene malarkey for five days.

Of course, you don’t feel quite as liberated come Monday morning when you’re packed into a tube carriage on your way home, trying to ignore the serious side eye and passive aggressive sniffing coming your way, but at the time, there’s some comfort in knowing everybody else is in the same boat. None of you have showered. And none of you give a shit. The stench is 80,000 people strong. Or, 80,000 minus those girls that show up dressed more for a night down Liverpool’s docks trying to pull a Premier League footballer than a festival.

I’m sure you’ve all seen them, emerging flawless every morning from their canvas beauty salons (known to the rest of us as tents), complete with false eyelashes and perfectly styled hair, courtesy of the travel straighteners that were higher up their packing essentials list than the tent itself.

If I’m being honest, the eye rolls I usually greet these girls with are probably born of jealousy that they still manage to look decent while I could probably pass for a pretty convincing ‘after’ photo in a pamphlet about heroin addiction. But still. Just embrace the filth and stop showing the rest of us up, would ya?

The patriot

What better way to celebrate being in the old U S of A than quite literally wearing their flag on your sleeves? But like wine, chocolate and going to Infernos, prints are fine in moderation. A patch of American flag print on your shorts? Fine. Head to toe? Well now you’re just teetering dangerously close to looking like you’ve opted for a budget Uncle Sam costume.

The ‘stoner’ 

Can somebody please tell me the exact date when cannabis print clothing became a thing? Seriously, I’m actually asking because I apparently slept through that.

What’s it all about? Is it supposed to be quirky? A not-so-discreet way to tell the world that you’re a pupil of Class B and, as such, apparently muuuuch cooler than everyone else? Because you may as well wear a sandwich board with the results of a drug-tested urine sample stapled to it. It’d be about as subtle.

And if wearers are trying to feign nonchalance towards drugs, they sort of fell at the first hurdle when they decided to dress HEAD TO TOE in weed print. As a look, it’s far less ‘edgy’ and far more Fisher Price My First Rebellion. 

The frat boy     

Forecast wise, this weekend can expect to see highs of 22C and possible patches of light rain. In layman’s terms, it’s still not hot enough to take your tops off, lads. I get it – you’re in California, where the suns always a-shining – and who knows how to party harder than the archetypical American frat boy?

But contrary to what some ill-designed wifebeater vest plucked from River Island’s rails would have you believe, suns out does in fact not equal guns out. A group of shirtless boys getting pissed on a keg of Stella pumped into red cups does not a frat house make. 

The stag do  

You laugh now, Gaz Gets Hitched 2k15, but how funny will you find that morph suit when you’ve gotta strip every time you want to use a portaloo? Thought not. 

The human highlighter

While we’re all here, there’s something I want to clear up. Since when was neon the international symbol for ‘good times ahead?’ A bit here and there, sure, but who’s looking at your fluro tutu and legwarmers and thinking: ‘Someone sure knows how to party’? They’re more wondering if it hurt when you got dropkicked through American Apparel. 

The tassle hassle

As with flag prints, moderation is a key ingredient if dabbling with the fringed look. Not only does too much make you look like you’re starring in an on-site production of Little House on the Prarie, but it’s also a safety hazard.

Have you ever gotten your fringed dress caught in a stranger’s shirt buttons and been dragged off, hem first? Because I have. And it ain’t fun. 

Of course, festivals and eccentricity go hand in hand, and I’m fully aware nobody has died and made me Sheriff of Coachella (yet), so feel free to completely ignore me and wear whatever the hell you want.

But, even if you disregard everything else I’ve said, remember this. If you find yourself thinking that perhaps a nice feathered headdress would set your outfit off a treat, there’s a handy guide you can follow. Times it is OK to wear a Native American headdress – if you are Native American. Times it is not OK – literally all other situations.

Liked this? You might also be interested in: 

Festival Fashion Doesn’t Belong Anywhere Near An Actual Festival 

What Not To Wear To A Festival: Cultural Appropriation Edition 

What To Wear To A Festival Without Resorting To A Crochet Kimono And A Fringed Bag 

Follow Erin on Twitter @erincardiff

Tags: Festivals