Lollapalooza 2012 Shows Us How To Get Evacuated and Muddy in Style

This tie-dyed beauty didn't let a little rain get her down--the mud just enhanced her festival look!
Photo: Jesse Lirola

Day two of Lollapalooza 2012 started off hot, and not just because of all the jean shorts. The weather in Grant Park was scorching, making the mile long walk from the gates to the far end of the festival something more reminiscent of a long journey through the desert than a leisurely walk through a crowd of 100,000 people. At one point my silver necklace actually got so hot it burned me. But that was nothing compared to what happened later. The forecast had hinted at a chance of a mid-afternoon shower or two, so people were already a little more prepared for weather, with ankle boots being the stand out trend of the earlier part of the day. Nobody was prepared sartorially, however, for when the festival organizers began to calmly walk through the crowds, telling people that the festival grounds were being evacuated due to severe weather on the way. As everyone flooded the streets of Chicago, it seemed like the apocalypse had arrived, and the ever-darkening skies began to make the crowd's bikini tops seem like they might actually come in pretty handy after all.

Lollapalooza attendees running through the mud at the Red Bull stage.
Photo: Jesse Lirola

After a downpour sent everyone to cower wherever they could (some concert-goers took shelter in a parking garage, others in nearby businesses and hotels), rumors began to circulate that the gates were being re-opened. Visions of a Hunter boot-ed Kate Moss wading through the mud at Glastonbury began to run through my head, and, rushing back to the grounds, my mental image wasn't too far off. Although most fans hadn't had the time to go out and get their wellies, there was a definite change in the stylistic atmosphere of the crowd. Many people had found themselves soaked after the downpour, and some were still wearing their garbage bag ponchos, although the skies had cleared and the night was turning out to be a beautiful--if a little chilly--one. We wandered down to the Redbull Stage, where Red Hot Chili Peppers were about to begin their set, and found a scene that, just as I suspected, resembled that famed UK festival. Between kids in shorts sliding through an enormous mud puddle, girls in flower crowns soaked through and caked entirely in dark mud, and the occasional beauty who appeared untouched by both the downpour and the mud gathering around her boots, the festival had taken on a playful, friendly feel, with everyone simply excited to get back to the music.

Festival dressing is never easy--you want to stand out from the crowd while also being comfortable and prepared, but sometimes there are simply more factors to take into account than one person, or their closet, can handle. Heading into the final day of Lollapalooza, it's fair to say that every possible festival weather condition has already happened, and the crowd will now have fully gotten into their all-weather-cool groove. Hopefully today I can accessorize with my jewelery only, though, and the mud can stay where it belongs down on the ground, but, honestly, I'm ready for anything.

In the meantime, I have to go get some new shoes, as our flats are still soaking wet and caked with mud and grass. It might have been a cute look while I was swaying along to Frank Ocean in the mud last night, but today I need something a little fresher.

Do you have any tips for looking cute in nasty weather?

Check out our favorite looks from all three days of Lollapalooza 2012 below!


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VMAs 2018