The world’s most beloved festival has been running for over half a century and it returns this Wednesday with a bang: Arctic Monkeys, Guns N' Roses and Elton John are set to headline — and just about every other musical act in the world is coming along too.
But let’s forget the music for a second and enjoy another type of well-established Glastonbury tradition — shameless celebrity spotting. Coachella may be the resident A-list festival now thanks to its Instagram-soaked social currency, but celebrities have been attending Glasto since before Coachella was even born.
And with every Glastonbury comes the festival fashion royalty, who are as loyal to the event as Michael Eavis himself. Kate Moss, reigning queen of Glasto style, has been attending for 20 years; Lily Allen went to her first Glastonbury when she was less than two months old; and Alexa Chung has worn more Barbour jackets to Glastonbury than you have... likely ever. Here are the best of the best celebrity fashion moments from the world-renowned festival.
Lily Allen smoking at Glastonbury is an image as immortalised as the Virgin Mary holding baby Jesus. A messy Glasto-fashion favourite, the British singer is often seen at the festival wearing loud, brightly coloured wigs (with absolutely no intention of them passing as her natural hair), a frock fit for performing in, and some kind of warm, oversized jumper.
Allen’s first time playing the festival was in 2007, during her prom gown and trainers era. She swanned about the Pyramid Stage wearing a strapless pink dress and mud-stained white high-tops, brandishing a can of Strongbow cider. She’s followed this pattern of trashy party chic at every Glastonbury since, right up until last year, where she performed at the event for the first time since going sober. Appearing on stage as a surprise during Olivia Rodrigo’s set, Allen was considerably more put together than in her Glasto days past.
All hail the undisputed queen of Glasto fashion. Moss has been turning out looks for over 20 years and they remain some of the most iconic examples of festival fashion ever.
Among her hall of fame looks was the miniscule gold dress and studded belt (which spelled out Glastonbury across her waist) outfit from 2005, which has single-handedly boosted the sales of Hunter wellies to this day. There was also her black waistcoat and mini-shorts look worn on the same weekend.
Moss’s past Glasto accessories included, but were not limited to: one dishevelled boyfriend, a cup of unspecified booze, belts, wellies, minimal makeup and perfectly tousled festival hair. She’s gone boho, she’s worn all-black, she’s even braved wearing heeled boots — but one thing is consistent: Kate will be at Glasto and Kate will be serving a look. If you try to emulate it, get your legs out, include a pop of shimmer in your outfit, smudge your makeup a bit, and walk around like you belong there.
The spiritual sister of Moss’s Glastonbury aesthetic is actress Sienna Miller, who emits much the same energy as the model. Waist belts, oversized sunglasses and boho styling are key for Miller, who is often seen traversing the festival wearing a more early-Coachella-esque outfit, but (crucially) without being cheugy.
Miller and Moss were once indistinguishable in their Glastonbury style and habits. However, they have diverged more as time has passed, with Miller growing increasingly earthy and boho in her festival fashion.
A new Glastonbury icon has appeared in the form of British model Adwoa Aboah, who has taken the torch from the 2000s icons and run with it.
The model and Top Boy star is typically spotted wearing more colourful, zany festival looks than her predecessors: one year, she donned a red handkerchief as headwear, paired with a black and red houndstooth jacket. Another year, she wore a pair of yellow-lensed sunglasses with impossibly wide camouflage flares, while in 2017 she sported a huge, chartreuse-coloured fluffy hat in the manner of Jamiroquai.
Aboah, who’s been attending Glastonbury since she was 16, told Vogue in 2017 that her festival fashion tip was to bring lots of socks and keep your looks casual. “In England, [festival style is] always casual,” she advised, “all that matters is that you can dance in it.”
It would be remiss of us to discuss Glastonbury fashion without mentioning the one and only Alexa Chung, who’s as devoted to the festival as they come. Like Moss, the presenter and model is also a lover of Hunter wellies, but her real staple is a Barbour jacket, which she’s worn at nearly ever single festival without fail. Chung became so associated with repping the Barbour brand that she designed not one but seven collaborations between them and her own personal label, ALEXACHUNG.
One of Chung’s best Barbour/Glasto looks (the two are synonymous and impossible to disentangle) came in 2016, when she wore a pair of high-shine black leather trousers and The Smiths band tee, topped with her ever-present wax jacket and a simple sidebag.
Another came just last year, when she was spotted traipsing the festival grounds in a simple cerulean plisse mini-dress, paired with lace-up black heeled boots and, you guessed it, a brown Barbour wax jacket. Consistency is key, and Chung is loyal to her staples.
A masterclass in boho dressing comes every year in the form of witchy songstress Florence Welch, of Florence and the Machine, who looks as if she was born to dress for a festival every day of her life. Welch likes fringe jackets, patterned dresses, waistcoats, wellies and the colour brown (one of the most dependable colours at a festival due to its overwhelming presence in boho clothing and ability to blend in with mud).
She is a lesson to all in how to dress free and floaty at a British festival without seeming too Coachella and Instagramified. After all, white floaty linens and crochet assless chaps might work for the American desert, but they will do you no good in the English countryside.
Click through the gallery at the top of this page for some of the best Glastonbury fashion of all time.