It's a relaxed event, in a field. When I first started thinking about what to take I considered my brown lace Evans Tweensize suit, but that seems a bit fancy for the location, more cocktail bar than campsite. If you're going to be dancing, eating hotdogs, shopping and socialising, you want to feel comfy. I've got several (genuine) midcentury dresses under consideration: a honey-coloured embroidered linen wiggle dress, a black-and-white shirt dress, an atomic sundress in earth tones, and a new floral sundress in purple, teal and turquoise. The first two can both be dressed up with jewellery for evening, and I haven't decided yet whether to wear them for night or daytime. Last year I got sunburned and didn't change at all on the Saturday evening, and that too is an option, just to go all Saturday in one frock.
While I probably don't need to take all four dresses, they will all go nicely with my ivory boxy bag and cream 1950s Cooltimer jacket, which saves taking lots of layers and bags and means I probably could pack all the frocks. I'd rather take fewer bags and an extra dress, given the choice. Though it's not a 'fashion show' event for me anyhow, more a good weekend to relax and enjoy fast food and snappy music.
|This year's options, plus cat (not going to the show)|
Just say no to the petticoat
Lots of people wear them, they look fab, they get heaps of compliments, and the coral broderie dress with giant petticoat that I wore last year was no exception. However, you have to be prepared to wrestle your frock and petticoat to keep it from touching any part of a much-used portaloo at 11pm AND still be able to do what you went in there for. After last year's dress-wrangling, I'm sticking with more fitted styles that are easier to control in the confines of a TURDIS.
Leave the good shoes at home
This is subject to change, depending on what the weather has been up to. Last year I wore a pair of cheapo black cotton flats from Shoe Zone for the whole event, and was very glad I'd done so when I stepped in a puddle up to my ankles while going back to my tent at night. (While the camping field is dry, and the event field is dry, there's a patch of low ground between them.) I don't fancy getting my Miss L Fires covered in mud or cowflop. If the weather's been properly dry for several weeks, I'll consider nicer shoes, but if there's been any rain at all, I'll stick to cheap ones.
My three absolute essentials are sunblock, antibacterial hand wipes and Soap and Glory Off Your Face makeup wipes. This year I shall not be relying on Mr Robot to tell me when I'm going pink, I shall be slathering on the sunblock all day. The antibacterial handwipes are for after using the portaloo, and the makeup wipes are great for getting off all traces of slap when I get back to my tent, and they have to be the Soap and Glory ones as they do the job without bringing me out in spots. Now, I was going to say, 'This isn't one of those poncy festivals with showers', but this year there will be a company providing hot showers, plusher portaloos and a powder room – for a price. Not sure I'll bother with that as the event only lasts two days; a bowl of warm water will do for me (as I said, for me it's not a fashion show, YMMV).
There are lots of brilliant traders selling lots of wonderful things. We really regretted not taking more money the first year, and made up for it last year. I'm not too worried about not packing many accessories because if I do suddenly decide I need a different dress/jacket/lipstick, there will be someone on site selling just the right thing.
So, the short version of all this is: I'll pack casual, pack light, and won't forget the wipes and wallet! Have you been camping at a vintage festival? And if so, what are your essentials?