As a little girl one of my favourite things to do was to dress up in lots of bright colours and dance around listening to The Beatles – I guess you could say that I’m a 60’s girl at heart. I always thought I was born in the wrong decade and my inner 60’s hippy came out again whilst I was studying Fashion; I did a project based on ‘The summer of love, 1967’, which was the height of the hippy movement, the year where everything changed, sex and drugs was experimented with to the extreme, acid rock became the new big thing and barbers nearly went out of business! I wanted more than anything to be able to go back in time and go to Woodstock, go to San Francisco and wear flowers in my hair.
Whilst researching into ‘The summer of love’, I found that somethings have changed but somethings really remained the same. Woodstock festival was based around a large group of people at the forefront of artistic culture coming together for a 3 day festival, filled with music and celebrating love and peace, sounds very familiar doesn’t it?
From attending different festivals over the last few years, I have found that the basis of the ‘festival wardrobe’ consists of, flower garlands, flowy cheesecloth dresses and beautiful crochet garments, which are all well known as a strong 60’s fashion statement. When you walk through the gates of a festival it almost feels like you are entering a time warp back to the 60’s and it feels good!
Although the fashion at festivals these days is very similar to back in the 60’s, the ideas behind it are very different. In the ‘hippy movement’ people wore these clothes as an act of rebellion against the current times and trends, otherwise known as an anti-fashion. The clothes they wore meant a lot to these people; it represented freedom and a natural life. Now however, around 3 million people were estimated to attend music festivals in the UK last year, which means this is a huge market for retailers such as Rat and Boa and Freepeople. The hippy style was taken on by fashion designers and celebrities and has become more of a fancy dress idea for festival goers instead of the day to day attire of a group of free-spirited rebels. What started as anti-fashion is now fashion! However it began and whatever it is now, I still love it.