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Fashion At San Miguel Primavera Sound, A Closer Look

Apart from the music, there are people. And the people who go to festivals have very individual ways of expressing themselves. We analyse the clothes people wear at the Fòrum.

We analyse the clothes we spotted yesterday at San Miguel Primavera Sound: what are people wearing, which shoes, what accessories, and why? Because the black, the tats and the high heels can be explained.

It's strange and outrageous, but it's true: Spain, and half of Europe, is being ravaged by the economic crisis, yet tens of thousands of people are indulging in limitless hedonism without a care in the world, as we speak. Maybe it is just that crisis, or the catastrophic unemployment rate among Spanish youth, but low-cost seems to be the word when it comes to the hipster uniforms at the event in the past few years.

Just so we understand each other: while three years ago, all the boys were dressed like Vampire Weekend (moccasins, pastel colours, Hamptons), this year Grimes' no-style's the winner - less tamed, more unpolished, and more open to improvisation. Among the people watching Claire Boucher play, we spotted a lot of outfits bordering on the ravey, as a substitute for the posh I'm-going-on-a-picnic styles of past editions. Anarchy versus sophistication.

It's one thing for magazines and blogs to propose trends, but it's another thing entirely if those ideas are followed by the punters. Why some ideas stick, and others don't, is a mystery; although, of course, the low-cost rip-offs by the great fast fashion trident (i.e. H&M, Inditex, and Topshop) have a lot to do with it. Jumpsuits, the piece of summer and festival clothing par excellence (fresh, wide and extremely comfortable), are still widely popular. Crop tops are also on the rise, albeit discreetly.

After what we've seen at the Fòrum yesterday, it's clear that denim dungarees are back - as innocent as they were in the 90s - and so are creepers, a bit harder to wear but with thousands of fans wearing the most classic (punk) versions or with platform soles in different colours (most likely the legacy of the ones Miuccia Prada came up with a couple of seasons ago).

Prints are for the summer. After a winter dominated by polka-dots (we've seen them in all colours and sizes, and they're still there), the plant and animal worlds are winning ground, albeit with some variations. The girls switched from the more classic Liberty and Vichy pieces to more playful designs (dresses featuring pelicans and other exotic species), while the boys are no longer too shy to sport Hawaiian-like floral shirts.

The much anticipated reunion of Refused, the Swedish hardcore band from the early 90s (disbanded in 1998 and exceptionally back on tour in 2012), attracted a considerable amount of fans of the genre to the Fòrum on the first day of San Miguel Primavera Sound. As a consequence, there was a lot more black than usual - and many, many tattoos - alongside an avalanche of Vans sneakers, the company that sponsors a large part of the hardcore scene.

Sunglasses are THE festival accessory. The Ray-Ban Wayfarer are still all over the place, but there's an increase in models with rounder and smaller forms, halfway between the styles of John Lennon and David Hockney/Michael Nyman.

The eternal dilemmas of PS: stockings or naked legs? High heels or trainers? More than one girl admitted yesterday that wearing high heels on the first festival day is the most effective precaution against going off the rails: high heels, uncomfortable by definition, are the perfect excuse to not go all the way, consequentially enjoying a speedy recovery the next day. We have to measure our energy, ladies. This thing has only just begun.

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