x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Festival fashion

Marketers are trawling the muddy trenches of Europe's music festivals looking for the styles that will sell. Here are our predictions.

As Europe moves to the beat of the music festivals this summer, the trend-seekers will be out in force, picking their way through the campsite debris in search of fads to fill the high street. For fast-fashion stores such as Topshop and H&M, the young dudes that spend their summer holidays jumping up and down in fields to the sound of their favourite bands are the future of fashion: the early adopters, the style pioneers whose looks will filter through the seasons to become mainstream hits a couple of years down the line.

Take skinny jeans, for example. Fashion forecasters first mooted this style nearly five years ago, citing as evidence the hordes of teenagers at Glastonbury and Lollapalooza who were already cramming their gangly frames into too-small denim. The world giggled at the peculiar silhouette of weedy legs, made to look even shorter by the low-rise hip-hugging styles: surely these could never take the place of a flattering boot cut? But five years on, the idea of ditching our skinnies in favour of the newer baggy shapes is anathema to many of us.

The battered straw trilby, the Ray-Ban Wayfarers with brightly coloured frames, the ever-popular kaffiyeh scarf, the cropped leggings beneath a miniskirt: all trends that have infiltrated the mainstream high-street fashion stores but that originated with the festival kids. It is with good reason that most fashion companies pay a huge sum of money for the privilege of receiving information compiled by these forecasters, and with equally good reason that those very forecasters send teams out to all the major music festivals with cameras to gather trend information.

So what can we expect to see in the shops in a couple of seasons' time, based on this year's festivals so far? Firstly, an early-Nineties revival looks likely, combining scruffy grunge shapes - scarves, baggy pants, vests - and the acid shades of rave culture: bright block colours, just too sharp to be primary. Those straw hats are still around, perched on the back of the head, but the more fashion-forward are wearing boaters instead, in a kind of 1920s throwback. Jeans are either cropped into tiny shorts or replaced with combat pants. Wellies are, of course, the footwear of choice - especially the Jimmy Choo for Hunter wellies sported by a lucky few at Glastonbury. Of all the festivals, for those in search of trends the big three are Glastonbury in the UK, Lollapalooza in the US and Roskilde in Denmark. We sent a photographer to Roskilde, which ends today, to pick out some of the most interesting outfits.

gchamp@thenational.ae