Wednesday, 23 April 2014

HIFA: Festival Fashion Inspiration

Harare International Festival of the Arts is an exciting annual year festival that combines music, drama, the arts and of course FASHION! This year’s theme is to “Switch On”, so as a blogger, it’s my job to let you in on the festival fashion trends that you need to have a lookout for. Now there are so many festival looks and trends to go by, but since the weather in Harare has been a little off lately; with the cold spells and the sudden rain, its sure safe to consider a little incorporation of some warmer gear when attending this year’s edition of #HIFA2014.

The HIFA Festival Fashion Inspiration will be a two part feature that will cover the ladies fashion and the gentlemen’s fashion. The first part feature will cover the ladies fashion, which will be broken down into three stylish segments; Festival Chic, The Reluctant Rebel and Trend Darling (because to be honest there are so many choices to choose from for Ladies fashion).
Festival Chic
Festival chic is the epitome of good ol’ fun festival fashion that includes easy breezy summer frocks, maxi dresses and fun circle skirts. Make the most of your summer frocks and minis at #HIFA2014 by pairing them with brogues, vans, espadrilles and boots to keep warm and fuss free whilst jamming to an energy filled concert. 

An all Black festival look is good to keep you warm, especially during an evening concert.

The Reluctant Rebel
Reluctant Rebel reminds me of a free spirit/edgy persona which really encompasses COMFORT as the main factor, whilst still looking good. Reluctant Rebel is what I would like to define as Grunge-Glam (which is a revolving trend right now), from the 90s a la Rihanna and Beyonce’s current fashion forward looks. Channel the fashion by bringing out a pair of cheeky shorts, graphic tees, statement jewellery and flat ankle boots. Comfort pieces are emulated through a good pair of boyfriend jeans, denim vests and long oversized tee shirts. Leather is a big trend with Grunge-Glam, but since real Leather is pricey, opt for the leather look alternative with the leather look jacket, boots and tassled sling bag.

Boyfriend denim to keep on stylish and warm whilst on the go.
Set from Signature Toscie


All sets and photos taken from and

Trend Darling
Trend Darling translates to top trends right now which are crop tops and PRINT! Print is still alive and pretty much everywhere (and receiving more fashionable updates). Bring out your best and personalized print gear a la Tanya Nefertari, who does not disappoint with her print ensembles and 60s mod inspired collection. I’m a big fan of her print incorporation in her designs.

Be inspired to wear a Long print maxi and stand out from the crowd. 
Tanya Nefertari printed jumpsuit and Mod inspired shift dresses to wear at a
festival. Photos taken from
Crop tops are for the brave; I say this because they are tummy and mid-riff bearing. Look into this trend by opting for a crop top tee shirt or vest with a high waisted skirt, and finish off with tons of bold accessories. If you are a bit self conscious like myself, then add a cover up for your crop top in the form of a denim shirt or a knit shrug. Be inspired by the look below shopped from

Festival Accessories
Festival inspired accessories are usually two things; bohemian and edgy. Channel festival accessories through floral headbands, braided hairdos, jewel arm parties, long neck chains, John Lennon inspired sunglasses and flat ankle boots. Closed shoes are a must have because you will spend the day rooming around on grass and sand, so comfort is key and keeping your footsies under wraps is the best option. Another accessory to add is outer wear; since the weather in Harare has been unpredictable. Bring along a long cardi, leather look jacket, a sweater and a scarf; which you can tie around your waist for the time being.

Floral Headband and those John Lennon sunnies to match
Other than looking good, festivals are a great way to have some fun and learn something new in the arts department. #HIFA2014 is only around once a year, so make the most of this opportunity and dress up in festival gear; whilst at the same time taking in new cultures and practices from headlined international acts such as Dobet Gnahore and Josephine.

With that said, do share with me which of the looks above best represents your personality this festival season? Leave a comment below and let's get talking. You can also tweet with me @tendaitoscie and have your say!

Yours in Chic and Glamour;
Tendai Sophia

HIFA 2014’s full schedule is available for download on Google Drive and ISSUU


  1. I do love the accessory suggestions, very eclectic and the fact that one can probably do these with formal work gear as well. Being a big bodied girl and not much of a wearer of short shorts and leggings, what would you suggest someone like me can experiment with and still keep warm?

    1. Boyfriend jeans are good for a fuller shape and women's jogger jeans (those jeans with the elastic cuff at the bottom). I remember when i went to HIFA in 2012 i opted for joggers because i fear the cold. With that you can pair with a plain blouse (tucked in), comfortable brogues or boots (whatever your fancy), a long neckchain and a nude cardi or blazer. I found this link from my fave denim site on boyfriend jeans for some inspiration
      Thank you for your comment hey :)

    2. Great advice! I definitely love that monochrome Maxi dress and the boyfriend jean is ALWAYS a winner. Since I believe life should be lived in heels you know it's gonna be a stiletto or a very high heeled boot. LOVE IT !! XO

    3. Soo glad you love it :) I try and cover real women's fashion and make it functional to Harare/Southern Africa. Thank you for reading!

  2. Tanya's collection is great! I just love the eazy breezy feel and look of festival fashion: the flowers, print, flitty dresses, colour, chunky boots etc etc: Bring It On!

    1. I know right! Festivals are always super fun and a good excuse to experiment with fashion. And well of course print is always timeless. Thank you for your comment :)

  3. I love all the looks !

  4. great wardrobe suggestions , i love the crop top trend