Pitchfork Music Festival kicked off yesterday over at Union Park. The three day summer music festival focuses on artists & bands from alternative rock, rap, hip-hop & electronica, with a little punk, jazz, and experimental thrown in the mix as well. This may be my favorite festival of them all because there’s such a variety in the line-up that there’s something for everyone. Sick of one sound?…just move on to the next stage and listen to a different set! Whether you plant yourself in the grass for a musical escape & drift off into an audible daydream or commit to going deep the pit, you’re bound to have a memorable musical experience; and with the likes of Bjork, Belle & Sebastian, MIA, and R. Kelly headlining this year’s line-up, that’s a definite guarantee.
I’m only going tomorrow and since it’s my only day, I intend on spending the whole day in the musical array. The second best thing at festivals, following the music, is the fashion! I want to pick out something that’s stylish, but still comfortable since I’ll be there all day long. There are many factors to take into consideration when it comes to picking out what you’re going to wear, such as…
- The Weather & Elements– With every outdoor activity you run the risk of inclement weather. Hot or cold, rain or shine, the fate of the festival is up to Mother Nature. I looked ahead at the forecast for tomorrow and it’s calling for mostly cloudy skies with a high of 78°. That sounds like the perfect day to me! Considering the recent string up upper-90° hot, humid days we’ve had here in Chicago (and everywhere else in the country) this little cool-down is welcomed. Since Union Park has very few trees shade is a scarcity; so I’ll rely on mostly cloudy skies to shield me from the sweltering sun. Something lightweight and breezy is the best choice for this kind of forecast. When rain shows up on the radar that’s another story!
- An All-day Affair – Attending an outdoor festival is often an all-day affair. You must make sure to wear something that’s keeps you cool and comfortable under the afternoon’s blazing sun…but warm enough when the sun is long gone. The gates open at Noon, first artists hit the stage around 1:00pm, the headliner goes on around 8:30 and the festival finishes up around 10pm. That’s a long day! With no re-entry allowed, once you cross that gate you only have what you brought with to work with.
- Your Surroundings – Pitchfork is located in Union Park on the Near West Side of Chicago. I’ve been to a few festivals at UP (North Coast Music Festival is also held in this park) and it’s my #1 choice for a concert site. It’s a wide-open grassy plot; you can pretty much plop yourself down once you pick the perfect spot, you don’t even need to bring a blanket! Two weeks ago I went to WaveFront which was up at Montrose Beach; the set-up in the sand was a first for me and while it was fun, being surrounded by all that sand got a little annoying after a while. The little granules were everywhere – in my hair, pockets, shoes, drink; there was no way of avoiding it. :/
- Style vs. Sentimental Value – How much do you care about what you’re planning to wear? Are you willing to risk wrecking it? It’s pretty much a given that whatever you wear is going to get dirty, maybe even destroyed. Its dusty, maxis drag on the ground, layers get lost or left behind, tops get torn when things get rowdy – just keep in mind that whatever you wear may need some maintenance repairs when you get home or even thrown away entirely. I made the mistake of wearing one of my favorite scarves to a DeadMau5 concert at Congress Theatre. I lost it somewhere in the crowd at some point during the set…I have no idea when, where, or how (I made sure it was tied!)…but when the lights went up, it was no longer around my neck. I loved my silky snake-motif scarf & lost it…I’ll never make that mistake again! Another bad idea – flip-flops! If someone steps on your heel and rips it off your foot you’re stuck with only one shoe…and that would suck. I have my special pair of purple lace-up sneakers that I wear everywhere. They’re secured to my feet, won’t break, and protect my little piggies from being crushed in the crowd…the only down-fall: tan lines – but that’s the least of my worries.
- The Bathroom Situation – You might find this to be a funny thing to factor in, but hear me out. Any fest-vet will say it’s important to 1. Locate all the lavatories so you know exactly where to go when you have to go, because there’s bound to be a long line when you get there. 2. Think fast – wasting time in line just to go to the bathroom sucks, especially when you’re trying to go in between music sets. Wear something that’s quick & easy to take on and off. If you can make it out of a port-a-potty without setting anything down (gross) and without having to take a breath that’s usually the best! And I’m pretty sure the person behind you will appreciate your speedy pee as well. 3. BYOTP – Bring. Your. Own. Toilet. Paper. (Kleenex, napkin, paper towel, heck, leaves for all I care). It’s almost a guarantee that they’ll run out of TP by the time the festival finishes, so remember your own resources. Rompers probably aren’t the best in regards to the restrooms. Do you really want to have to pull down your entire outfit in the port-a-potty??
I’m sure there are a few factors that I’m forgetting, but oh well; I’ll add those to my next pre-festival post. Keeping these points in mind, I need to pick out the perfect outfit for Pitchfork, add I’d like you to help! Here are a couple of my choices…
1. My All-Saint’s charcoal fringe cotton top & cut-offs
2. A chevron-print one-piece swimsuit underneath cut-offs & my dad’s blue plaid button-down, with my brown suede cross-body bag
3. My Free People ‘WILDCARD’ cut-off tank top and J.Crew rolled shorts, with my Free People brown leather hip belt.
4. An Urban Outfitters tank top and cut-offs, with my fuchsia velvet fanny pack
5. My Free People floral print high-low silk top and cut-offs, with my Top Shop olive wool hat & fuchsia velvet fanny pack
6. A purple vintage floral-motif tank top and Arden B. ivory maxi skirt, with a plaid fedora & my brown suede cross-body bag
7. A Joy Division graphic tee underneath my Urban Outfitters antique-motif fringe wrap with denim cut-offs
Vote now on what you think I should wear tomorrow!…