Culture

Festival Fashion Guide 2019: What to wear to every must-do festival this summer

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Because we all know that ‘festival’ is its own fashion season.

In New Zealand, we’re partial to a festival. They offer respite from mundane routines and scenes and provide an opportunity to explore pockets of our nation’s beautiful terrain in all of its sun-kissed glory.

When you’re in festival mode, which typically consists of a carefree state of mind with an overpriced vino in hand, the last thing you want to be doing is fussing over your complete over (or under) sight of an outfit choice. Festivals are about movement, comfort and casual confidence. They’re not the time for sweat-promoting, rash-inducing, man-made fibres or breaking in a new pair of shoes.

Opt for pieces that can be mixed and matched for different environments and invest in good quality footwear that you’re not too precious about. Drinks will be spilt, feet will be trod on and it will be unbearably hot and cold at varying times of the day. But it’s a small price to pay for what will undoubtedly be looked back on as some of summer’s greatest moments.

To make a breeze of the imminent festival season below is a list of the trendiest festivals, including the not-to-be-missed Vype picks, with style notes to get your outfits underway. 

Scroll below for six top festival picks for the summer and what to wear to dance the night away in style:


1. Laneway
Monday 27 January 2020, Albert Park, Auckland

Just as the nation reluctantly resumes their nine to five, Aucklanders catch a break with a top shelf festival that coincides with the region’s anniversary weekend. With two stages set up in the luscious realms of Albert Park, plenty of space to frolic, and more boutique bars and street food stalls to choose from than Taylor Swift breakup singles, St Jerome’s Laneway Festival is without a doubt *the* best way to celebrate Auckland Anniversary Day.

Boasting equally stellar headliners, Laneway is your ticket to see Britain’s dance-rock band The 1975, Australia’s electronic legends RÜFÜS DU SOL, and pop icon Charli XCX up close and personal, plus a tonne of emerging artists. 

Don’t miss out on: The 1975
For more info, visit: lanewayfestival.com

Style notes: Laneway is a day long excursion demanding style that doesn’t expire. The international festival is renown for an eclectic range of getups that vary from understated and functional to city-slicking boho. Strike a balance and choose utilitarian pieces topped with plenty of retro accessories to dial up your style game.


2. Rhythm & Alps
Sunday 29 – Tuesday 31 December 2019, Cardrona Valley, Otago

Hang up the vines and head to the valley this New Year’s Eve and experience the South Island’s premier music and camping festival. Attracting up to 10,000 party-goers, Rhythm & Alps combines the stunning surrounds of the majestic Southern Alps with a sensory explosion of lighting and sound. At Rhythm and Alps, you can get amongst the action up close and personal or hang back and create your own personal dance floor without missing a beat on stage. It’s a bit like Rhythm and Vines, only free-range.

Boasting an extensive lineup of international and local acts across four stages, the hardest part of your visit will be deciding where you’ll groove to next. Nestled in the Cardrona Valley, which is roughly a 15-minute drive from Wanaka or a 40-minute drive from Queenstown, you’ll be basking in uninterrupted sunshine, bouncing to and from the charming food trucks in the vendor village, and taking a plunge in the local swimming hole before getting swept up in the nightlife. Once that southern sun goes down, temperatures and epic beats will drop. Campers can expect other-worldly levels of wellness and culture while out-of-towners will be treated to top-notch transport.

Don’t miss out on: Shapeshifter, and the Vype Lounge.*
For more info, visit: rhythmandalps.co.nz

Style notes: Relaxed & practical. A chic light cotton blouse with a normcore vest for crucial warmth after sundown, sunscreen for that severe southern sun, and some low top sneakers – because have they ever let you down?


3. Rhythm & Vines
Saturday 28 – Tuesday 31 Dec 2019 Waiohika Estate, Gisborne

With headliners like Disclosure, Alison Wonderland and Wilkinson on the lineup, you know you’re in good company to welcome in 2020. Located at the beautiful Waiohika Estate on the East Coast, Rhythm & Vines lets you build a unique camping festival experience from the ground up. Eco-friendly Tepee villages, premium tent hubs, glamping packages, and hotel and motel options that’ll double as a mini staycation – you can recharge on-demand to live your best festival life.

Garnering a crowd of 21,000 and a global reputation of being the first festival in the world to welcome in the first sunrise of the new year, Rhythm & Vines is a must-attend for all. So, if you regularly experience NYE FOMO and live for bumping into friends and familiar faces, then summon the crew and organise your tickets before it sells out (and it will).

Don’t miss out on: Alison Wonderland, and the Vype Lounge.*
For more info, visit: rhythmandvines.co.nz

Style notes: Opt for an airy cotton mini skirt with a dainty floral – you’re surrounded by stunning vines, after all – a banged-up printed t-shirt to give you that festy-veteran allure, a belt bag for practicality, and a modern take on the gladiator sandal for maximum comfort. Oh, and a pocket fragrance to solidify your summer memories in a scent.


4. Electric Avenue
Saturday 22 February 2020, Hagley Park, Christchurch

The Garden City comes into full bloom next February with the return of Electric Avenue Music Festival, Christchurch’s highly potent and highly enjoyable one-day festival. Running full steam ahead from 11 am until 11 pm, Electric Avenue delivers healthy doses of quality and quantity in 12 hours of summer festival power.

With more than 30 artists – including Ben Harper, Peking Duk, Drax Project and many, many more – performing across four stages, there’s a smorgasbord of musical delights (rock, funk, house, hip-hop, drum & bass etc.) to suit every musical taste. Oh, and did we mention their VIP Experience is one of the best around? Think flushing toilets, beauty stations, gourmet local fare, premium beverages, elevated viewing… So get Christchurch bound this February for a day of unmissable action in the height of a scorching Cantab summer.

Don’t miss out on: Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals
For more info, visit: electricavenuefestival.co.nz

Style notes: Electric Avenue calls for Toast Martinborough whimsy with a spot of southern charm for all-day lounging and dancing. Our designer muses? Isabel Marant Etoile and See by Chloe. A fusion of ‘70s sophistication with a picnic-in-Paris sensibility.


5. Bay Dreams
Saturday 4 January 2020, Nelson

Bay Dreams at Mount Maunganui may have sold out but there’s still time to snap up the final tickets for their second show performing in sunny Nelson on the 4th. Following an epic pre-party on the 3rd, which features Shapeshifter, Friction, Kings of the Rollers, and The Upbeats, Bay Dreams is bucket-list summer festival that’ll provide month-long positive vibes. 

Tyler, The Creator will be headlining at Bay Dreams in Nelson alongside other international names including Skepta, Yelawolf and Ella Mai. Meanwhile, other familiar artists Ocean Alley, Netsky, Mitch James, and Sub Focus will keep you blissfully entertained throughout the day. And by blissful we mean energised and unbothered as you rub shoulders with crowds en masse in the sweltering heat. Ahh, summer gigs… you can’t beat ‘em.

Don’t miss out on: Sub Focus
For more info, visit:  baydreams.co.nz

Style notes: Bay Dreams is all about playing up your quirky side allowing your inner ego to take centre stage. Choose a memorable hero piece – a party piece du jour – and allow every other component to fall into place.


6. OUR:HOUSE
Friday 15 November 2019, Shed 10, Queen’s Wharf, Auckland

Sign up to that bootcamp, break out the fake tan and kickstart the festival season with OUR:HOUSE. The sellout show returns to Auckland’s waterfront this November and it’s going to be a blinder. Featuring one of house music’s biggest acts Duke Dumont and scores of other artists that frequent GeorgeFM, OUR:HOUSE is the summer festival you want to get amongst.

Unlike other festivals where your deliberately curated outfit can become partial to the weather conditions, OUR:HOUSE is 100% indoors and guaranteed to drum up searing temperatures. That, and the hot tracks spun by artists and DJs Marten Hørger, Godlands, Odd Mob, Jacknife, Otósan, Dan Aux, and more. So if you’ve been keeping a low profile all winter, entrust in OUR:HOUSE to shake things up this social season. It’s your turn to shine.

Don’t miss out on: Redlight, and the Vype Lounge.*
For more info, visit: ourhouse.co.nz

Style notes: OUR:HOUSE is your time to break out your favourite street style micro trends and wear them with conviction. Dare to go bold with trending neon greens, punchy black utility pieces and lashings of glam accessories. With your beauty look, opt for highly pigmented eye shadows, metallic lip colours, strobe-like highlighter and plenty of makeup fixing spray.


*If you’re looking for somewhere to chill out and recharge your batteries, look out for the Vype Lounge where you’ll be able to take a load off, and charge up your devices and either chill out in the shade of an umbrella, or warm up in our lounge if it’s cold.


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