It’s hot in the desert: where next for festival fashion after Coachella?

<span>Le Sserafim performing at Coachella.</span><span>Photograph: Christopher Victorio/REX/Shutterstock</span>
Le Sserafim performing at Coachella.Photograph: Christopher Victorio/REX/Shutterstock

While British festivals are known for beer and mud, Coachella – an annual two-weekend event in the Californian desert each April – is renowned for its glossy celebrity crowd and carefully curated content opportunities. Glastonbury has chip vans and Portaloos. Coachella, meanwhile, has branded photo backdrops and pool parties.

Love it or loathe it, there’s no denying the influence Coachella has on festival fashion. From flower crowns to cowboy boots, this is where festival trends are born. With Coachella’s second weekend now wrapped up, here are the main takeaways.

Meta band T-shirts

While the slogan T-shirt isn’t going away (see American singer Sabrina Carpenter in a “Jesus was a carpenter” white tee), prepare for an influx of meta-band moments. Ezra Koenig of Vampire Weekend performed in a T-shirt emblazoned with a shamrock and “The Pogues”. No Doubt’s bassist Tony Kanal wore a T-shirt featuring The Police while, in the ultimate meta moment, Olivia Rodrigo popped up for a surprise duet with Stefani wearing an “I heart ND” shirt.

You can expect to see an influx of official and bootleg merch this summer. To coincide with the release of her third album, Dua Lipa has created a “Radical Optimism” T-shirt featuring the tracklist. Chris Martin has more than eight T-shirt options to choose from, all available at the Coldplay store.

Spectacles are the spectacle

Between the dirt and dehydration, wearing contact lenses to a festival is a feat of organisation. So why not channel Billie Eilish and Raye and opt for old-school glasses instead? No more rooting around your eye at 5am because you’ve long forgotten it was time to take your lenses out.

Festival fetishwear

While Glastonbury attendees can expect to see a lot of boho in the fields of Worthy Farm this summer, for its NSFW counterpart, look to bondage-inspired garments that are more cut-out than actual fabric. American performers including Doja Cat and Chloe Bailey hit the main stage at Coachella in figure-hugging catsuits.

While harnesses and choker-style necklaces were seen on concertgoers all over the site. Given the British weather, maybe latex is best left to the professionals, although it is quite waterproof.


The little black mini is quickly becoming a festival favourite. All five members of the South Korean group Le Sserafim wore LBMs for their debut performance on day two of Coachella. Elsewhere, Rihanna watched Tyler, The Creator side of stage in a leather LBM. Among the crowds, Halara’s skorts proved popular. Featuring a hidden pocket for your phone and credit card, the outfit by the athleisure brand has become a favourite on TikTok and the effect is trickling down to the desert and field. Halara was given a further festival endorsement when Taylor Swift showed up in a black version.

Double, triple and quadruple denim

Rather than a swirl of tie dye, this summer’s festivals are gearing up to be a sea of blue. Blame Beyoncé: the “denim on denim on denim on denim” trend isn’t slowing down. At Coachella, there was everything from stonewash to acid and even deliberately dirty denim. Online fast fashion retailers such as Boohoo are championing the trend with dedicated festival edits featuring denim shorts, maxi skirts and shirting.

Cut and paste ensembles

Dig out your craft kit, this summer DIY festival fashion is gearing up for both an on- and off-stage takeover. Gwen Stefani’s look featured various types of plaid and tartan spliced together. Shakira went for a homespun crochet mini dress. If time is too tight to up-skill ahead of festival season, check out options from talented crocheters on Etsy and Depop.

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