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Dress for a Fest: Casual v. Cute

In case you have been living under a rock, or in the Dirty South, for the past week and have not heard the joyful proclamations around campus, fest season has arrived! In honor of last weekend’s High Fest celebrations, it is time for the ultimate instructional post. Dressing for fests is complex and requires more thought than most would think . . . especially for freshmen. No worries though; after reading this you will be able to fest like a pro, except for that keg stand. We will have to work on that later.
Comfy: Fests are the best time of the year because no one really cares what you wear. The whole goal of dressing to fest is to be comfortable all day so you can maximize your drinking abilities. Chances are most people will already have their beer goggles on by the time you even arrive at the party, so they won’t even notice what you’re wearing. If you want to start day drinking at 10 a.m. after you were out until 2 a.m. the night before, then that doesn’t leave you much time in the morning to finish sleeping (recovering), shower and then get ready. Waking up at 8 a.m. just so I can have a full face of makeup does not sound ideal, unless I can somehow squeeze a nap into the day, which is very unlikely if you have friends like mine who will ensure you stay up no matter how much want that nap. I choose to wear either a t-shirt and jeans or a tank to and shorts. OU shirts, jerseys and tie-dye will dominate the streets of Athens during fest weekends. Leggings are also very prominent as pants since they are the ultimate in comfy, yet still cute, pants. Your outfit will depend on the weather, since Ohio is infamous for its ever-changing weather patterns. Ponchos are a great accessory to carry around just in case you get stuck in a downpour. Flip-flops are my shoes of choice, although tennis shoes are an absolute MUST for 8-fest. Trust me. From experience, I know that wearing flip-flops will only result in lost shoes and a multitude of cuts on your feet due to broken cans on the ground. Dressing comfy also means that you don’t have to worry about ruining your clothes. Again, trust me. This will happen no matter how hard you try to avoid it. Between mud, beer and food stains no clothes will get by unharmed.  


Cute: Ask any of my friends, I am the biggest girly-girl they have ever met. I love ribbons, flowery prints, short dresses, and flouncy skirts. These garments are not weather appropriate half of the year so I always anticipate spring and summer. In my opinion, fests are the perfect occasion for showing off new warm-weather purchases. I always turn to sundresses or the trendy skirt-tank top combo for fests. Since fests take place early in the day and can continue into the evening, it is important to dress for different temperatures. Sundresses, skirts, tanks, and sandals are good for drinking in hot weather, but bring a sweater or lightweight jacket for when the sun goes down. Pairing these ensembles with casual flats or sturdy sandals and a small cross-body bag make them fashion-forward and functional. Comfortable shoes are a must for festing since you will be walking and playing games all day. Streets and yards can also get semi-muddy from all the intoxicated co-eds stumbling around, so wear things you won’t mind getting dirty. The cross-body bag is a must. You probably carried a clutch or wristlet all year, but fests are different. You will probably visit several locations and most likely won’t have many pockets. A small bag can stay on your shoulder all day holding necessities (ponchos for rain, money, deodorant, snacks, and tampons, unfortunately it happens) without limiting range of motion during beer pong or inhibiting your ability to chug a mega-mug. Note to freshmen: when wearing skirts and dresses during the day, it is crucial to make sure the outfit has an air of casualness. Most OU students don’t get all dolled up for day drinking, so don’t be afraid to pair your dress with sneakers or throw your hair in a ponytail. I would also advise against wearing black, gaudy jewelry, or other “evening” attire. Finally and most importantly, this outfit can easily transition from day to night. Feel free to take this outfit from day drinking to partying uptown, no costume change needed.

The ultimate fest outfit combines comfy and cute clothes into one outfit. A stylish tube top and jean shorts or a sundress with a zip-up hoodie over it are both great options. Just remember not to wear anything you would cry over ruining and that you won’t be uncomfortable all day seeing as you will be on your feet and running around the streets of Athens all day and night. Dress to accommodate your needs and your fest season will be a success.

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