Stand Out at Summer Festivals

Deciding to attend a summer festival is the easy part. Finding what to wear? Not always a breeze. The desire to be fashion-forward is real. Luckily, stylist and costume designer Tal Kohen has a few chic ideas to help you stand out.

Based in both New York City and Los Angeles, Kohen has over 10 years of experience styling for commercials, various brands like Roxy and Quiksilver, private clients and MTV. She offered her insight on how to shine at any music, film, food and art festival.

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When jamming out at music festivals

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Between Lollapalooza, Panorama and Governors Ball, music festivals are all the rage during summertime. And nothing fits the occasion better than a dress. Whether a maxi or shorter flowy piece, dresses “are sexy and comfortable and it’s always fun to dance in a dress.” Kohen recommended dresses from the brands Ulla Johnson and Free People paired with comfortable sandals like ones from OluKai. Avoid really flat shoes, she said, since they won’t withstand a whole day of standing and running from one stage to the next. As for bags, stick with your favorite crossbody (she recommends one from Little Liffner) to be “hands-free.”

When watching the latest flicks at film festivals

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Film festivals are the perfect opportunity to take it up a notch and throw on your very best. Kohen’s top pick: a wrap dress. “They are good for every single body type because you wrap it and you cinch it wherever your most flattering part is.” Of course Diane von Furstenberg, the creator of the wrap dress, is an obvious choice, but other options include Rebecca Taylor and Topshop. Opt for a strappy sandal or a low comfortable heel from brands like Loeffler Randall and Schutz. And get flirty with a standout pouch from Clare Vivier.

When chowing down at food festivals 

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Food festivals call for casual chic. Whip out your favorite pair of jeans or jean shorts (Citizens of Humanity are ideal) paired with Converse or Beek leather sandals that “mold to your feet.” “I would also do a print flowy blouse because that will hide anything if it gets dirty,” said Kohen, who has even styled famous chefs including Emeril Lagasse. Veer away from white in case something spills as well as dark colors to avoid attracting too much sun. Always bring a backpack so you can “grab all the food and drinks you can get.”

When getting artsy at an arts festival

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This is the place to make a fun statement and think outside of the box. “There are so many creative minds and artists that go to art festivals,” said Kohen. “It’s definitely a place where you get inspired and where you can inspire.” She suggested a dress or a romper pointing to the brands Zimmermann and Love Shack Fancy. But make sure to play it up with a standout bag. Look no further than one from Cult Gaia (shown above). “It’s like an art piece in itself. You will get so many compliments on that,” she said.

anna halkidis

anna halkidis

Anna Halkidis is a senior web editor at Long Island Pulse. Feel free to reach out at or on Twitter @annahalkidis.