Coachella Festival Fashion Essentials

The emergence of Gaslamp mega-clubs inspired a change in local style sensibility. The days of flip flops and sundresses are shadowed by nights of glitz, glam and high drama. Romantic floral prints are tucked away to make room for dazzling sequin designs. And as a result, our repressed inner hippies must wait for the return of spring to embark on a sweet desert escape.

Coachella sets the stage for a flower child revival. Never mind the music, Coachella is the Mecca of boho-chic festival fashion. An alternative style popularized in the late 1960s, Coachella fashion channels the iconic counterculture imagery of Woodstock, the original music and arts fair.

In ’69, festival-goers rocked out to Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, The Who and Jefferson Airplane while clad in textured bellbottoms, tribal-print maxi dresses, fringe-lined jackets, tie-dyed bandanas, beaded Navajo necklaces and wide-eyed sunglasses. Many of these once rebellious fashion trends now reappear in contemporary festival forecasts. Must-have Coachella style essentials include high-waisted shorts, sheer caftans in vibrant shades, flirty crochet over revealing bikini tops and loads of fierce fringe and feathery accessories. In other words, the only real difference is the modern music.

This year’s two-weekend Coachella lineup features live performances by Radiohead, The Black Keys, Dr. Dre, Bon Iver, Swedish House Mafia, Florence + The Machine, The Shins and more, April 13-15 and 20-22 at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California. Check out the full lineup here.

In mere days, hipsters will invade the desert landscape in full force, running free like wild spirits in the wind, enhancing the hippie fashion sense with a new age edge that is best understood as a hard-hitting “Purple Haze” electro remix. Make a statement with mismatched prints, bright color blocking, wide brim hats, vintage crop tops, bold combat boots and whimsical flower garlands that pay homage to your soul sisters of the ‘60s. Let your hair flow with thick braids, natural waves and artificial fuchsia streaks.

Marina Monroe is the creative director of Stylehaüs, a membership only fashion boutique in West Hollywood. Stylehaüs recently hosted a Coachella fashion show, featuring stylist-recommended, festival-ready looks. And of course, we couldn’t miss out on the fun. We chatted with Monroe for the scoop on this year’s hot trends.

“This year at Coachella I'm expecting to see a lot of bright colors; color is huge in fashion right now and I'm thinking colored denim shorts, bright tops, and even crazy colored hair will be everywhere,” Monroe shares.  “One of my personal favorite looks for Coachella involves high waisted denim shorts and a crocheted crop top-- this is the perfect way to escape the heat without revealing too much!”

Check out three of Monroe’s favorite Coachella fashion looks.

Look 1: Be a bohemian goddess in a Theodora Callum poncho paired with sleek black booties.

Look 2: Define casual-cool in on-trend Otis & Maclaim floral shorts, a bright pink Otis & Maclain crop top, stacked bangle bracelets and a feminine head piece.

Look 3: This chic look goes from day to night -- an ivory Odylyne blouse atop Genetic Denim short shorts with a black top hat, nude wedges and tribal cross-body bag.


Where to shop for Coachella:

Stylehaus – 8459 Melrose Place, West Hollywood, 90069 – 323.655.5900 –

LF La Jolla – 7864 Girard Ave. La Jolla, 92037 – 858.866.4220,

Haven Boutique – 751 5th Ave. Downtown, 92101 –

Mimi & Red – 3032 University Ave. North Park, 92107 – 619.298.7933 –

HOME – 629 S. Coast Highway 101, Encinitas, 92027 – 760.632.6880

Hunt & Gather – 2871 University Ave. North Park, 92104

Follow @MichelleScene for San Diego lifestyle tips and trends in real time

Discover more local fashion stories in our San Diego shopping blog

Also pictured: Free People



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