Set in a large clearing in the simply beautiful Hainault Forest in Essex amidst a haze of raging teenage hormones, the only fashion rules of the Offset festival are these – there are no rules.
Though the sun chose to stay well and truly hidden behind its cloud for the entire festival and the chilling Essex breeze sent many a shiver across the skinny-jeaned crowd, what did it matter to this sea of hipsters bedecked in their over-sized original 70’s sunglasses, rolled-up skinnies and deck shoe-combos? The girls in their denim minis and intentionally laddered tights can’t have been too warm either, but did they let it show? Like hell they did.
The Offset festival has that ‘I’ve ransacked a bin/charity shop from the 1950’s/60’s/70’s/80’s’ feel about it. Not that i’m saying that this is any bad thing, I like it, I actively encourage and admire experimentation and expression of fashion in all it’s forms. In fact it’s refreshing to see fashion not so much re-hashed as people slinging various items at the iconic wall and seeing what sticks.
So we end up with a new twist on these looks, the rockabilly boys, the new romantics, the bikers (in Dr Martens of course), the indie crowd, the 50’s pin up girls and the happy hippies in their face paint, and so it goes on.
Vintage fashion fairs and charity shops from every decade seemingly have exploded violently in the middle of a forest and the Offset festival has spawned out of it. The thrift shop shopping scene in London was turned into a ghost town during this weekender for sure, the kids were all sipping cider in the woods at Offset.
Luckily the crowd could get their fashion fix without missing any of the top line up with a vintage fashion market on site. Festival goers could rummage away to their hearts content and potentially wear all their new purchases at once, depending on their mood of course.
One of the many great things about the Offset festival is that you can be who you want to be and no one would ever dare sneer at you. Hell, you could even dress up in an all-in-one leopard print lycra outfit complete with ears and a tail and the crowd would merely applaud you for your efforts.
C’mon then hipsters, we’ll see you next year, lets face it, we won’t be able to miss you.