I Despise Festival Style, Except for Kate Moss’s

Andrew M. Santos

That rock-and-roll, devil-may-care attitude easily translated into Moss’s wardrobe while attending festivals. You couldn’t miss her: She would religiously attend those muddy stomping grounds in a pair of rubber knee-high Wellies tucked into jeans or with shorts or with a sand-colored dress and a belt so low it appeared it would fall off. One of her most memorable looks was when she attended a festival in 2003, dressed in an itty-bitty waistcoat with rosary beads around her neck and equally teensy shorts—an ensemble that would later be re-created by Kaia Gerber on the spring 2020 Saint Laurent runway. 

Her impracticality made her stand out. During her Doherty era, she wore a pair of skinny leather pants with a lace black top and stiletto boots. In another image, she sports a beige sweater with a sequined shrug—completely bizarre for any daytime festival—and hangs off of Doherty, who wears a thin white tattered tank top. Another cursory image search will show Moss in an oversized fur vest, almost as if she skinned a coyote herself. 

Photo: Courtesy of Getty Images

While Moss’s looks sometimes felt like odd mash-ups, they are a far cry from today’s heavily curated, though equally impractical, festival style. That’s exactly why they remain some of the most memorable outfits. Moss was dressing simply how she wanted to—no trends, no Instagram. It’s the sort of organic style that lives on as nostalgia, a vibe. In fact, these very outfits were the pivotal and influential inspiration for those trawling fashion forums in the mid ’00s. Dimepiece founder Brynn Wallner tells me, “I was addicted to these photos in high school,” while vintage dealer Blythe Marks refers to Moss’s festival years as a “cultural reset.” In some of these photos, Moss is surrounded by other concertgoers wearing T-shirts and jeans, which is fine, but her personal style trumps anything that was trending at the moment. What’s chicer than that? 

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