Thursday, 5 March 2015

Bestival Presents the Art of Dressing Up

This year will be my third year in a row visiting Bestival, it's an amazing place and the commitment to dress up is such a highlight, they were the first major festival to introduce a theme each year. For the tenth anniversary Rob and Josie da Bank (married duo who run the whole festival) released this book, documenting the different costumes that have been spotted and ruminating on the love for dress-up. On the blurb Rob (his whole name is too ludicrous I'm sorry) says:

"I don't know what it is about the British. Fancy dress and getting dressed up in eccentric, ridiculous and just plain stylish regalia seem to go hand in hand with our seldom-seen show-off nature ... and nowhere is that more evident than at our beloved Bestival. From the Medieval Fool to Morris dancers and pantomime - the Great British people love any excuse to don some crazy outfits and let their hair down. Maybe we're shy, retiring creatures in our everyday guise and we need to become someone else to truly kick our heels up. For the last decade Bestival has embraced fancy dress like no other festival and has also pioneered the theming of festivals."

I like this celebration of extravagant alter-ego, but I think the book is a bit plain and uninteresting, which is such a shame given the scope they had when making it. After a while it gets a bit monotonous seeing costume after costume, it almost has the feel of a catalogue. I feel like it's one of those things that if you're a part of it is hilarious but from the outside is a bit alienating. This is exactly what I don't want my edition to be, I need to find an angle thats personal so that I'm interested but also reaches a larger audience and doesn't bore them. I don't want people to end up with the feeling they're looking at other people's holiday photos.

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