By Brandis Ohlsson
For 16 years, Coachella has been the west coast’s A-List festival going experience. Held at the Empire Polo Club in Indio California, Coachella has showcased some of the greatest musical acts of our time, including Paul McCartney, Radiohead, Madonna, Beck, etc. The last few years however, Coachella has gone from a music festival to a street style madhouse.
It seems as though sponsorships from brands including H&M, Lacoste, and PopSugar to name a few have flipped Coachella on it’s head, making it more of a fashion event than a music event. In fact, the term “No Chella” has been coined now to refer to those who skip the music altogether and instead, bounce from party, to fashion show, to party.
In it’s sixth year as sponsor, Swedish retailer H&M decided to step the marketing up a notch with the “H&M Loves Coachella Collection.” The collection includes a number of boho (which ironically, is defined as a person who is outdated or behind the time) flowing lace and floral pieces, crop tops, and wide brimmed floppy hats. Because for whatever reason, people have decided that going to Coachella means trying way too hard to dress like you’re actually at the 1969 Woodstock festival.
While Coachella is most definitely the “see and be seen”, it is not the only music festival slowly being taken over my the fashion crowd. For instance, Austin, Texas’ South by Southwest has hosted brands like Gucci and Bottega Veneta.
Is it too much? Fashion Director and Senior Vice President at Neiman Marcus, Ken Downing, recently said “Coachella has been marketed within an inch of its life this year.” Which leads one to believe that like the festival goers themselves (Kylie Jenner wore a leotard- to a music festival. Can anyone tell me why?!) maybe Coachella is trying too hard.