Festival season is well underway this year, and kicked off with an epic #Glasto2015 in June (heck, even the Dalai Lama showed up!), closely followed by #TinthePark over the weekend. There’s a generous helping of festivals still to come though, and we’ve got some tips and tricks on which ones to go to and what to wear.
Maybe festival fever has only just gripped you and you’re searching the right one. If so, you have a smorgasbord of different festivals to choose from. Out of the big UK festivals, we’d have to slap our seal of approval on Bestival for its ace lineup of bands and comedians from 10th to the 13th of September. Their headliners have a little something from the eighties (Duran Duran), the nineties (The Chemical Brothers), the noughties (Missy Elliot) and the teenies (Mark Ronson), so it’ll please every generation. Of course, it’s not all about the music, and festivals are often good places to sample the best of live comedy. At Bestival this year, check out Eric Lampaert’s wild improvisations (recommended by Eddie Izzard, no less) and Rob Auton’s genius comedy poetry. For when you get peckish, you can tuck in to some of the scrummy vegan food that will be available at Bestival. To sweeten the deal, Bestival is also dedicated to the green cause, recycling as much as possible, using compost toilets, and inviting organic traders with fair trade food and drink, amongst other great practices they’ve developed to reduce their footprint. Lovely jubbly!
For the globe trotters among you, we recommend Sziget Festival, tucked away on an island in the Danube river running through Budapest, Hungary, from 10th to the 17th of August. If the idea of having a festival on an island in a river isn’t enough, then luckily Sziget has plenty of treats up its sleeve. The lineup boasts some massive names, like Kings of Leon, Florence + the Machine and Kasabian, to name but a few. One thing at this festival that stood out to us is the Miracoco Luminarium, an 800 square foot inflatable sculpture composed of labyrinthine tunnels and domes, brightly lit in rainbow shades and made by Architects of Air. It looks like an incredible multi-sensual experience, not to be missed! This festival is also committed to working with nature, as they dish out green bin bags for people to fill up in order to win special gifts and certificates for their help. Plus, if you’re searching for vegan food, Sziget have assured us that there will be several stalls with vegan options to choose from. Tasty.
Straight off the bat, you’ll need some gorgeous vegan shoes from Beyond Skin. One of the new styles on the block is Amelie, our metallic gold strappy sandals with an open toe for maximum breathability, padded insoles and flexi soles for double the comfort, which is definitely what you need when you’re on your feet all day. The black faux patent Rose sandal is a classic Beyond Skin design and goes with all outfits that ever existed ever, so would be a staple part of your festival wardrobe. To stand out from the crowd, our on-trend Charlie silver faux patent plimsolls are the way to go. Plus, if you polish them enough, they could even double as a mirror! But don’t hold us to that…
It goes without saying that you’ll need to buy some solid wellie boots. We found this little family-run company in Canada called Kamik, and they make great wellies that come in some funky colours. They’re also devoted to sustainability, as these boots are 100% recyclable. Bonus! To limit their carbon footprint, they make all their boots in-house, they use hydro-generated power instead of fossil fuels when making their shoes, and their machines are cooled using recycled rainwater. Our favourite colours of the Heidi rain boots are the vivid coral, the bright turquoise and the shiny red for their all-round festival-friendly zaniness.
We did some shopping around for you to find ethical festival accessories, and here’s the treasure we found! The tan bag on the left is the Highway 65 Hobo, made by Free People and Urban Originals from soft vegan leather. That fringe detail is a classic festival look, and inside it has a zip pocket for you to lock away your valuables, safe and sound.
Next is People Tree’s geometric Sun Beam necklace. As you may know, People Tree is all about sustainable and fair trade fashion, and this particular necklace is handmade by artisans in the Bombolulu Workshops in Kenya. These workshops empower physically disabled people to create jewellery from brass and silver plate, such as this beautiful necklace. This is a fantastic social initiative, and certainly one worth supporting.
At the top is the Monovia vegan belt by Bohemian. This tribal number is made of 100% polyurethane, which is also what our synthetic leathers are made of. Great minds think alike. This material is a cut above other leather alternatives like PVC, as it’s far friendlier to the environment. This belt would look right at home with a pair of homemade cut-off denim shorts.
Underneath the belt is Inkkas’s mesmerising Tango cuff bracelet, hand-crafted and sourced using the highest quality woven materials from South and Central America, no less. Inkkas is passionate about sustainability, the principles of fair trade and philanthropy, and their products are produced with the upmost respect for the local artisans that weave these textiles. Plus, for every purchase, one tree is planted, to start turning back the wheels on deforestation. Fantastic stuff.
Decorate your ears with these bold statement earrings, hand painted by jewellery maker Ashley Ann Bennett and available through Etsy. They’re made out of vegan leather and are oozing with festival vibes.
And last but by no means least, have a gander at those gorgeous blue AMS Ink Dick Moby sunglasses. These have a blue bio-degradable acetate frame and come in a black recycled hardboard case. Dick Moby turn plastic waste in to top class high quality sunglasses, and they’re always researching new sources of acetate waste to use. All their glasses are handmade in Italy, which is where Beyond Skin sources some of our fabric from. Shucks, we have so much in common! Fingers crossed these striking blue shades will match the colour of the sky at your festival.
If you’re still hunting for more ideas, our Summer Survival Kit is the place to go.