a los angeles girl in new york city


Friday, March 21, 2014

COACHELLA 2014: Music Festival Tips (Clothes, Getting Around, Etc.)

Hello lovelies! Wow, it's that time again... time for me to start incessantly posting about Coachella! This year is my second time going to this awesome music festival in Southern California, and I thought I'd post about some things I've learned that I can pass on.

Let's start with the basics: what to wear to the festival.

Honestly, although you may see celebrities wearing flowy pants and military jackets, I HIGHLY SUGGEST YOU THINK OF THE WEATHER. Please, Coachella can get as hot as 100+ degrees, and looking like some bohemian model is not worth the pants. It's really freaking hot, I promise. That's why it seems like everyone wears minimal clothing at Coachella: you will not be judged, you will only be comfortable and not having a heat stroke.

Based on this attitude, I always opt for denim shorts (the classic) or a light skirt. For tops, stick with flowy short sleeves or sleeveless. Crop tops that are tight are perfectly fine as long as they don't have too much fabric/are thick/have long sleeves. For your own good, do not wear fleece or a thermal top. No one does. Don't worry about being cold at night; if you're dancing at a set, you won't get chilly. My plan is to always keep a (VERY) light sweater in my bag just incase I find myself standing cold when the sun goes down. If you don't want to carry a bag/sweater all day, get a locker or make someone with a bag carry it for you. Hey, they were the one who chose to bring a backpack!

Shoes are a whole other category. I know, I know - "everyone wears gladiator sandals to Coachella, I saw it on celebrity street style!" I, on the other hand, am a big advocate of sneakers or boots. Yes, this is a little contradicting; wearing my Dr. Martens all day makes my feet a little hot, but it's all worth it. Closed-toed shoes will save you from dirt, sunburn, and possibly even blood. Now, don't go wearing your nice heeled suede boots either... they will get dirty. My go-tos are old Dr. Martens or Converse high tops. Make sure whatever shoe you wear, you're fine with them getting dirty or you can throw them in the washing machine.

What's next to cover? Making sure you see all your favorite artists!

I can't imagine a Coachella where I just walk into the festival and float from stage to stage all day, without a plan. I'd go insane. To ensure I didn't miss any bands I wanted to see last year, I made myself a schedule. This is super easy if you know how to type (or write - you old schoolers!) and have internet connection. Coachella's website releases the set times for the festival a few days before each weekend. All you have to do is go through each day, pick out the artists you want to see, work out any conflicts with your group, and record each name/set time/stage on a piece of paper. This was extremely helpful; my friends and I could plan exactly where we would be at what time, when we'd have time for lunch and dinner breaks, and how we'd get to the front of our favorite acts. It was super successful and I recommend it to everyone. Make a nerdy set time plan! Do it! Print out multiple copies and be that person!

Side note - I've heard stories of the mythical Glastonbury festival where you apparently have to walk up to a mile between stages... Coachella is not like that. If you know where you're going and you aren't a slow walker (you know who you are), getting from one side of the festival to the other won't take more than 10 minutes. I think.

Alright, so what should you eat? 

I'll keep this short and sweet: I'm not vegetarian, and all I ate at Coachella was a slice of pepperoni Spicy Pie (4 times) and a Caeser Salad (once). They were both delicious and I could probably live off of them for a year.

What about drinks? 

I'm picky, so I basically only drink water. If you're carrying a bag, definitely bring a small-ish plastic water bottle. They have refillable water stations for free and it was super convenient. 

How can I get front row for a set? 

The Wombats

Vampire Weekend

Two Door Cinema Club

Depends on the size/popularity/stage of the band. For example, I was second row for The Wombats. I got there for the last song of the set before at the same tent and stuck out my spot. I was front row for Ben Howard, who although had a large audience, was fairly easy; this is due to the fact that I waited through all of Danny Brown's set before him, and since they are completely different artists, not many others were in both the Danny Brown crowd and the Ben Howard crowd. Take another example: My friends and I waited through the last bit of the set before Vampire Weekend (Social Distortion I think) on the Main Stage, and got to about the 10th row of people. We did the same for Two Door Cinema Club, which was on the Outdoor Stage, and got to about 3rd row. It's all relative.

Some other random helpful tips/hints:
- buy merch when you have a large amount of time between two sets you want to see; the lines can either be one person long or 10, so you never know
- bring a hat so you don't get burned to a crisp while waiting for a set out in the sun
- drink water consistently (I almost passed out on the first day - it was dark and I didn't think I'd need water as it was colder... I was wrong)

Local Natives (this was pre-sundown, pre-close encounter to fainting)

- don't be that person that misses all of the music they want to see in order to hunt down celebrities, socialize, or just being forgetful. $400+ for a ticket is not worth that.
- try to get sleep, it'll pay off in the long run
- tip from my friend: if your feet hurt from dancing and standing, when you are resting between sets, lift your feet up in the air (apparently it helps?)
- this is cheesy but HAVE FUN AND FORGET ABOUT SCHOOL/WORK!!!!! Try to remember that you're enjoying yourself and seeing awesome music and you don't have to be stressing out doing work!

Any questions, I will happily answer :)

xx Alyssa


  1. Ah this looks amazing! Great tips too. I've never been to a festival but really want to go to one this year! xo


    1. They are so much fun, definitely worth it! x

  2. this sounds incredible! i'm unbelievably jealous. xxo


    1. just nominated you for a liebster award on my blog if you wanna check it out!xx


    2. ah cool, thank you so much!

  3. Oh man, it's my dream to go to coachella, I'm so jealous. You look great too, AND THE WOMBATS AND VAMPIRE WEEKEND, ah I need to see them live. I did see tdcc earlier this year, but I wouldn't compain about watching them again, haha.

    So yeah, this is a wicked post. I love it.


    1. THEY ARE ALL SO AMAZING!!! Thank you xx

  4. this looks so fun, I wanna go to coachella so bad <3


  5. I'm so unbelievably jealous you're going to coachella this year because all of my favourite people will be performing! I hope you have tons of fun, though I don't doubt that you will! I've nominated you for the Liebster Award, you can check it out on my blog! :) x


    1. Awesome, thank you!! Hey you can be there in spirit :)