With Childish Gambino headlining on Saturday, SFist reported that Outside Land’s broke previous years’ attendance records with a total of 90,000 people entering Golden Gate Park on the second day of the three-day weekend festival.
While most attendees came for the performers, others for the renowned food and alcohol, and a surprising majority for the eagerly anticipated Grass Lands, many used the three-day festival as an opportunity to demonstrate their unique style through unique combinations of outfits and accessories.
Music festivals are a great place to spot style for two reasons:
Firstly, many festival attendees belong to specific subcultures that are reflective of the artists found on the festival lineup, which is manifested in a subtle yet apparent “uniform” seen at performances. Take, for example, the dozens of superfans who dressed in black and yellow for the Friday evening performance of 21 Pilots. Or, the throngs of basketball-jersey wearing fans who comprised the crowd during Lil Wayne’s Friday afternoon set.
Secondly, outfit-spotting at festivals is intriguing from an anthropological perspective because it is very much a sign of the times. Each year new fads burst to the forefront of popular fashion, creating trends that are easy enough to spot if you know where to look. On display this year was neon (and lots of it), checkerboard pattern, cow-print (and other cowboy paraphernalia), plaid, and lots and lots of basketball jerseys.
Shoulder-sling bags and fanny packs enjoyed a continued streak of prominence, especially due to Outside Lands’ introduction of tighter bag regulations. Vibrant colors, which always seems to make their way into youth-centric festivals, could be spotted almost anywhere you looked. Accessories on men seemed to stand out this year, with many wearing chains, rings, and other eye-catching adornments.
The best part about festival style is the variance in effort and cost of the outfits. While many outfits are easily under $100, some can be spotted in clothing and accessories that easily cost more than a 3-day VIP pass. This is, in essence, the democratization of “style”, and is reflective of a larger social unity that is achieved through a shared sense of what is cool or vogue.
At the intersection of fashion and music, fans continue to come together every year at Outside Lands to share outfits, inspiration, and most importantly the experience of celebrating arts and culture in the beautiful Golden Gate Park.
Click through the photos to see the outfits that caught my eye at Outside Lands 2019, some of which adhere to the rules above, and some which, well, are in a category all their own.
Photo 1: Checkerboard and pastel complementing each other at the intermission between Cautious Clay and Still Woozy.
Photo 2: Maria, lead singer of The Marias, demonstrates a subtle spin on bright neon trend with a beige overcoat with neon-green lining.
Photo 3: 1-of-1 patchwork cotton and flannel t-shirt paying homage to Nirvana front-man Kurt Cobain. (Clout goggles not included.)
Photo 4: A remix of checkerboard and bright neon, done with a smile.
Photo 5: Baby blue. Flames. Eye-cathing accessories. A few keys to standing out amongst the crowds at OSL.
Photo 6: High-waisted pants and sneakers that POP – just make sure they don’t get stepped on in the pit!
Photo 7: Anime button-up. Cotton longsleeve. Plaid pants. Yes.
Photo 8: Was it hot in the Denzel Curry/Sheck Wes mosh pit? Yes. Was this attendee losing nearly 100% of their body mass in sweat? Yes. Was it worth it for the clout? You bet your a**.
Photo 9: OSL’s iconic mascot Ranger Dave inspired many outfits at OSL 2019, with a handful of attendees spotted sporting ranger hats and apparel at different points throughout the three-day festival.
Lyle Bryson is a KCPR staff member and a Cal Poly Business senior. He wrote the articles, took the photos, and created the graphic.