What is the best footwear for a festival or large-scale dance event??
‘These boots are made for walking
And that’s just what they’ll do
One of these days these boots are gonna walk all over you’
So 2020 is hitting us all so hard that the USA said ‘hey look at these three videos of UFO’s, we don’t know what they could be…’ and we were like… ‘whatever dude.’
Another one of the greats was cancelled this week and a part of me really took that one to heart. People come from all over the world for UK festivals, we have a brilliant mix and with each announcement it’s getting a little harder to face that life really won’t be normal for some time to come. I headed off on my one trip out for food supplies in the Dr. Martens boots I have been breaking in for Boomtown and I felt a little dead inside. 😦 I should be looking down at these boots while dancing with all my Boomtown family, but no I’m walking around the block, crossing the road when I see someone walking on the same side as me. Whoever could have thought what our lives would be like right now! Events like Boomtown and Glastonbury, the two headliners on my 2019 festival list, are worth an extra years’ wait. More time to plan outfits and get the perfect get-up sorted.
Right to it, these boots where made for walking and they’re gonna walk all over you……
‘You keep playing where you shouldn’t be playing
And you keep thinking that you’ll never get burnt (HAH)
I just found me a brand new box of matches ‘
Not all boots are made for walking and trust me if you have been to Boomtown Fair, you know what walking really is. I’ve seen step counters at over 50k in a day and babes, thats the low end of the scale! I danced and walked so far I ended up unable to put any weight on my foot and both were bleeding.
Boomtown Left Toe is real, some people are two years down the line and still can’t fully feel their left big toe! (Wanna note here, that it’s WORTH IT) So good footwear should be high on your list of what you need for a festival adventure.
‘Are you ready, boots? Start walkin’
I’m going to give you a run down on my top footwear for festivals! Some of these I have first hand use of and some I have just researched based on my experience. I will be doing full reviews on many of these products so keep an eye out.
Number 1 – Ankle boots
Support for your ankles, not always waterproof but the right pair will keep your feet going long after the rest of you has given up!
No word of a lie they are currently only £49.00 for this ~epicness~ pink colourway (currently on sale.) You can get them in Metallic Pink or Blue, Cherry Red (Old school) What more do you want! order link here
I love that they have recreated the original 1970’s boot into a vegan style! A strong ankle boot will support you but will also be easier to dance in than a higher style boot.
You can’t go wrong with some good old DM’s, buying a pair of these is like buying a chunk of British history. The mens version doesn’t have as many different colour options but the cherry red is pretty epic. Available via their site for £139.00 Click here for the link
Currently on sale for £15.00 other colour options available too. A few friends have brought these for the school run and ended up living in them, having the zip means no messing about with laces. Click here for link.
These lend themselves to loads of festival looks, cute with shorts and the zip means you don’t need to faff with buckles when you wake up late to see your top headliner! Available from WILLS for £101.00 Click here for the link.
Ok, not gonna lie, I would fancy a guy just a little more in these (keep them in mind for that steampunk look I’m coming to later). Buy them from WILLS for £89.00 Click here for the link
Waterproof, available for both men and women. £116.00. Click here for link. For the mens version click here. Ok ya basic but waterproof, easy to wear and I bet you wouldn’t be worrying about any pain in these so it depends on what is high on your list, comfort or style. I still think for a fully waterproof boot they look pretty good!
These have a real 90’s vibe or even a ‘back to the future’ look to them. Order from KOI for £60.00 with interest free payment plans optional. Click here for the link.
I really like the strong big simple look of these with the small green detail at the bottom, from KOI for £65.00 weekly interest-free payments. Click here for link.
You had me at pink flames, these are so epic and still look like they are a good option for ankle support and all day wear. Get them direct from KOI for £65.00 with interest free payment plans. Click here for the link. These also come in GREEN and ORANGE. Be quick they have just gone on sale for £38.61.
Same style but different colour way than the Orpheus ones above, from KOI for £55.00 with interest free payment plans available. Click here for the link.
I love that these come in the same style for men and women. Matching 😉 Ive been looking for boots for ages and girls really do have more funky options. I like that these have that military vibe with added zig-zag detail to bring them to life a little more. They come from KOI, £70.00 for the women, click here for the link or £80.00 for the mens click here for link. (weekly interest-free payment options).
£130.00 from Schuh, also available in black and payment in monthly instalments if wanted. Click here for the link.
Platform vs flats. This is up to you. Yes, platforms can be a bit harder on crazy hills but I have worn my low platforms to many events . Have a try out and see what works for you.
NUMBER 2 – Trainers
Trainers, ok so if you know me I live in heels and when the summer hits, I’m barefoot. I owned like, one pair of running trainers for years, until…enter stage left –
My gold hidden heel trainers.
I can live in them. I danced and walked for like 12-14hr straight and my feet was like, ‘Hey why you stopping? We are all good in here.’ I love these so much that I have bought two pairs. Am I made of money? Heck no, but they were 5 pounds!!
So lets talk about a favourite website of mine – everything5pounds
I try to live my life as close to vegan as I can, that means not only diet but my life as a whole. I buy mostly secondhand, be that clothes, furniture, even our pool. This is due to budget and also how I was brought up by a family of hoarders who fixed things then they broke, rather than throwing stuff away.
I make as much as possible myself (the headdress and romper in the photo above were made a few days before the event). There is an extra thrill of buying second hand or making things, as they become one offs. Find your own style, it’s cool to look like you all came from the same factory (as one of my besties Caroline would say) but you can still find ‘your look’ within a bigger style.
Where was I? Right, on this website everything is 5 pounds or cheaper. So it pushes me back from not wanting ‘fast fashion’ Having said that, I’m on a budget and buying cheap doesn’t always mean it won’t last. My shoes were covered in mud, only 5 pounds I may have been in the ‘don’t bother, throw it’ club but no they cleaned up great! They are so comfy, I’m not binning them till they are in bits. Bits!
It’s not worth me trying to link items from this site for you as they change stock so quick. These boots are currently ONE POUND!! Madness. Even though this website is cheap, they may never have that shoe in stock again so look after them. This is not just a footwear site, but everything down to home-wears.
Are you a high tops vs low cutters person? (I don’t know what to call them when they are under the ankle, so I made that up lols.) I have hypermobilty so my ankles can be pretty weak. I can just trip over my own feet at the best of times, let alone dancing on bumpy ground. So on the whole I should look more for high top ankle support. As with everything, there are good and bad points. High ankles can keep out more water and give you support but low cutters can give you more movement, less rub and keep you cooler.
How cute are these and they are Carbon Neutral!! Check them out over on Will’s Vegan Store, by clicking here.
Never thought I would like a pair of Skechers but these are fun! Good support for high insteps too. Currently £80.00. Click here for the link.
Getting that 90’s vibe again with these from KOI, they are currently £60.00. Click here for link.
Wanna push the boat out on budget? Then these are £230.00 from All Kind. They have a real simple classic elegant style to them too. Don’t think they will ever be in my budget but boy they are nice! Great support for ankles too. Click here for link.
Bright and cheerful, these are at the cheaper end of the scale. From New Look, £10.99 for these yellow mellow trainers. Click here for link.
New Look have brought out a good 10-15 styles of vegan trainers, click here for a link.
Wills never does sales, so they will always be £95.00. Creating looks that last, and the shoes do too. Click here for the link.
They have loads of different versions over at PO-ZU, click here for a look.
Have a look under the ‘wild card’ section further down for light up trainers 😉
NUMBER 3 – Sandals
Pouring cats and dogs? Then sandals is not going to be your first choice but if you have room in your backpack, a small pair of sandals can be god sent. If you’re at an event which is going to last more than a few days, then at some point getting air to your feet will really help them to recover from all the walking and dancing. They won’t give you protection in big tight crowds, so don’t run down to centre stage and get in the mosh pit….
If you have a small bag for the day you can pop a pair in, ready for when you want to walk back to camp or your wild card boots are killing. They can be perfect to spend the day wondering about in and then changing for the evening. (Can you tell I fit into the ‘rave mum’ category!)
These have a zip on the back so you don’t have to worry about fiddling with buckles. The ankle straps will help support your foot and hold it in the shoe if sweating or in light rain. Catch them at Dolls Kill for £20.11. Click here for the link. You will also find them in white with the rainbow colour way, click here.
Think I have fallen a little in love with these, they are so my style. A play on old school Mary Janes, the strap giving you support. I like that they are an enclosed toe style too. Currently £45.71 from T.U.K Footwear. Click here for the link.
HUARACHE FOOTBED SANDALS BY WILLS
These are the grown up pair of shoes you never thought you would buy and then end up living in them. Open to get lots of air to your feet with a padded sole. A strap to hold them in place and giving you a little support. Get them from Wills for £69.00. Click here for link.
Ok, so when did sliders become a ‘thing’? If you were born in the 80/90’s and show up to school with the sliders/socks combo on, you would most likely have been slapped or the had the mick ripped out of you.
Loads of my Boomtown crew were rocking sliders and socks. I get it, it’s easy and it works. If it’s your look, rock it! Keep in mind they are called ‘sliders’ and you could just slide out lols. These are from Wills for £69.00. Click here for the link.
If you’re short like me you love a little height, even in flats. A zip to get you in and out quick, pretty closed to give you some stomping protection but still getting some air to your feet. They are £88.48 from Dolls Kill. Click here for the link.
Another pair I’m in love with, my birthday is December everyone. I would just love loads of vouchers for Dolls Kill. I could have made this blog just using shoes from there! These will help support your ankle and are reflective. I’m a little over excited about these. I love the old school style of Mary Janes but they have mixed these up with the use of reflective material. The one thing I would say, from experience, lots of small buckles often rub on your foot so maybe tights or neon short socks would be a good combo with these. Available from Dolls Kill for £72.39. Click here for the link.
These are not what I would class as ‘sandals’. A mix of deck shoes and sandals maybe but here is as good as any place to put them. I know what you’re thinking, bit of mud and rain and these would never recover, dying a slow and painful death (some brands wash really well in the washing machine, check your pair).
These are those small pair of back up shoes, which can go in a bag if you’re struggling with the shoes you have been in all day. The walk back to the campsite, the journey home in the car or the chilled sunny day walking around the festival site. Very cute with some shorts. They won’t protect you in close crowds but they will give your feet some breathing space. From Toms £40.00 Click here for the link.
Recycled Espadrille Loafers
These are from Wil’s Vegan Store and come in 4 different colour ways. Made using recycled materials, Zero Carbon. Priced at £45.00. Click here for the link.
No I’m not mad, well….maybe just a little crazy. These fall into the ‘your feet are dying’ category or, ‘it’s nice weather’ section (heck I have seen it pouring with rain in December and it was freezing and they are still wearing these with thick jumpers. I do live by a beach lols). I love this company and it’s local to me, they are giving back too (check out their store in Havant, well not at the moment due to the craziness which is 2020 but at some point..) These are £11.00 from Fatface, click here for the link. Like the Toms above these are at the f**k it point. Keep out of tight crowds and you could be the one laughing at all your mates being carried off by the festival crew who ended up crying with bleeding feet (also good for wearing in showers).
NUMBER 4 – Walking shoes/boots
I’m adding this knowing it most likely should have been number one on the list but there is just something about hiking boots which I don’t like! They are one of the most sensible options and a few of my friends who had a pair of walking boots on for most of Boomtown Fair (5 day event) didn’t have anywhere near as many problems as me. I should be looking at buying some as I am the girl who ended up being carried by a member of the Boomtown crew, not being able to walk any further and blood was pouring out of my shoe (fun times). The big thing about walking/hiking boots is they are on the whole waterproof. This means no matter what weather changes you get, you won’t need to change your footwear (but please change your socks as much as possible and get them dried out where you can! Trench foot is real, my friend got it one year at Glastonbury!)
I’m too much of a magpie to be able to look at these for too long, hiking boots are just not my bag baby. If you’re being a proper grown up who wants to out-dance everyone else as your feet are not dying under you, then something like these from Wills will be perfect. They are fully waterproof and built to get the job done, priced at £116.00 Click here for the link.
Ok, well done Wills you’re maybe changing my mind with these, much better looking. Available for both men and women at £116.00. Click here for the link to the mens or for the womens version click here. Swap out them laces for some neon?…
Water-resistant, multi-terrain, hiking shoe. This style comes in both mens and womens priced at £160. These are designed to be thinner allowing better movement. Now this is more what I can get on board with, not fully waterproof though so keep that in mind. Click here for the link to the yellow and black style for women or if you’re looking for these for men, in black click here.
XPETI THERMATOR HIGH TOP WATERPROOF HIKING BOOTS – MEN/WOMEN
These are waterproof. That’s one thing I do love about hiking boots, they will keep your feet warm and dry. High tops will support your ankle more and help stop water from pouring in the top of the shoe. Available from Amazon priced between £49.99 – £63.99. These come in a few different colour combos as well. Click here for the link. There are both men and women versions of these. Oh yeah, they are growing on me… these could look pretty cool with the right outfit.
NUMBER 4 – The wild card
We all love the Wild Card right, but the thing with the wild card is… it’s maybe a push back from the sensible option.
In many events it’s all about the dressing up/creating a character and that often means your shoes/footwear are part of your look.
I’m always on a budget, these platform boots were 5 pounds from a charity shop. I sprayed them black and added feathers. Even though they are platform boots it was much easier to walk in than I thought, even on uneven ground. I spent over 12hrs walking/dancing in them at two different events and didn’t have any problems.
Wanna **stand out** from the crowd? Check these out –
Ok so these may need more skills on hills… but look at them! Keep an eye out for my next blog about outfits 😉 Available through Dolls Kill for £102.95 click here for the link.
Hold the phone! Gold and they light up!!! Be still my beating heart. Took me a bit to find a good UK supplier of these epic shoes. You can find them on Amazon but limited sizes and styles, the cool cats over at Flashez have brought all the milkshakes to the yard with these bad Boyz!
You can buy these in both infants/child sizes and adult! Currently £39.99 from Flashez, click here for the link.
Not much beats a classic, easy style shoe to match any outfit! Click here for the link.
These are to die for! These are mostly stocked in kids sizes and I know my little girl would be over the moon in these. They do have limited adult stock up to a size 4 UK. I’m a little bit over excited at being all matching with my 5yr old…..think lock down is getting to me! Lols. They are priced at £29.99, from Flashez, click here for the link.
Worthwhile grabbing some ‘mud savers’ if you’re buying a pair of light up shoes, click here for the link. These flashing shoes have 7 colour changing modes, 3 flash settings (slow blink, fast blink and fade mode). Will stay lit for 6-8hrs and fully rechargeable.
I’m not going to lie, I’m not sure how long these would look this amazing but, I love them! Think sliver/white space suit, big white fake plastic laser gun. A gal can dream lols. They are through Dolls Kill and they are killing it with their range, priced at £76.41 click here for link.
I think I am lost for words, how epic are these from iHeartRaves! Currently in the sale at £73.27, click here for the link.
Can you get anymore ‘RAVE’ than these. Who knows if you can walk in these, let alone walk up a hill and dance for 14hrs. Who cares? Cause look at them! Get them from Dolls Kills for £112.60. Click here for the link.
Epicness, the reflective sections on these will look mind blowing at a festival. £80.14 from iHeartRaves, click here for the link
Did someone say disco??? These are pretty blooming funky. Selling through Dolls Kill for £70.78. Click here for the link.
These are from KOI priced at £80.00, click here for the link.
These are the best of two worlds, trainer style bottom with raver thigh high top, £80.00 from KOI. Click here for the link.
Love these from i Heart Raves, £73.39
DEFINED ATTITUDE BUCKLE CREEPERS BY CURRENT MOOD
I love these and another one bang on for a mad max apocalyptic look. On sale at Dolls Kill for £56.62. Click here for the link.
These are unisex, yay! Trying to find stand-out-there shoes for men is much harder and it’s good to see some companies are thinking out of the box and not splitting sales in to male or female. They are £76.41 through Dolls Kill. Click here for the link.
These are the ultimate in ‘Mad Max’! Currently £92.50 through Dolls Kill. Click here for the link.
Currently on sale at Dolls Kills for £257.38. Click here for the link.
Looking for the perfect **Fallout, Steam Punk** look? Check these out –
Think old town district in Boomtown, steampunk/cowboy. These are perfect for that Wild West look! Currently on sale at Schul for £29.99 click here for the link.
Perfect for the ‘Fall out/Steampunk look’. Currently on Amazon for £65.95. Click here for the link.
Currently on Amazon for £64.75. They have a real old school Wild West feel about them, and the right details. You would be hard pressed to get more ‘steam punk’, straight from amazon. Click here for the link.
I’m thinking more desert survivor, lots of layers. These are currently on sale for £31.00 from Sole Trader. Click here for the link.
Other look/costume ideas–
I think these are lush in their own standing, putting aside the Star Wars reference. Perfect for cosplay, they look like they would be pretty supportive on the ankle and comfy too. Available on pre-order only from PO-ZU priced at £165 Click here for the link. If you want them now and in black click here.
As with all of the shoes on this blog these are vegan. They are Star Wars Chewie boots but I also think they would be epic for a ‘cave woman’ look too, or an apocalyptic survivor. They also remind me of the 90’s raver fluffy boots! £99.00 from Po-Zu, click here for the link.
ETERNAL HOLO PLATFORM BOOTS FROM DEMONIA
NUMBER 5 – Wellies
Ok wellies, I have mixed feelings about them. In deep mud they will suck you down and you try getting out without losing one. Dancing in them just feels wrong and hard work. I know there is no such thing as bad weather, there is just the wrong clothes but sometimes…just sometimes the rain is too much and the mud is just too deep that you will just have to face going home caked in the stuff.
I’ve cherry picked ones which will be better for the festival environment. Not all wellies are made equal! You may be tempted to go for the cheapest option, but finding out the seam has come away while your foot is in full on cold wet mud is not fun. I’ve found with wellies to go for a good brand and they will see you right for years to come.
If you want wellies, look at the shorter style, still water proof but won’t limit you so much on dancing. Pick good socks and change them often. Thing with wellies, they won’t grip your foot, so you can slip about in them if you haven’t got the size bang on. They won’t always give you ankle support (try a hightop walking boot if looking for ankle support and waterproofness). Going for a shorter size will save you loads of room on packing too. These are from Evercreatures priced at £37.00, click here for link.
Keeping it original with these from Hunters, they are priced at £100.00 click here for the link. I bought a pair of Hunters second hand, they have been going strong for over 10 years now. Good British brand and good to see these fully Vegan cert boots. For the non shiny mens version, click here.
Going for a shorter style, will save you room in your packing. Meaning you don’t have to walk/travel to site in wellies if the weather is good. Also won’t overheat as bad when dancing at indoor venues. Shorter styles are much easier to dance in and won’t weigh you down. These are priced £120.00 from Hunter, click here for the link.
Another one for the men, but I love these. Chelsea boot styling but a waterproof welly! Great combo thats’s even smaller than the short style to save on space when packing, these are £110.00 from Hunters. Click here for the link. These are available in a dark olive colour for the girls, they are priced at £85.00, click here for the link.
You can get these in purple, pink, green, blue and black. These are from Rockfish and are priced between £35.00 – £69.99. Some of the colours are in the sale! Click here for link.
All the shoes I have listed here are VEGAN, most coming from companies who themselves are vegan with a low CO2 footprint and/or giving back to the people and the planet. I want you to only have to buy these items once, for them to do the job so well you won’t leave that one cheap leaking welly laying in the mud. Yes I’m on a budget too so I understand the cheaper option and sometimes the cheaper item is just as nice and if looked after will see you through. Just like tents, sometimes we can be pushed into the mind set that cheap is ok to dump, but thats a dangerous place to go. Click here for my write up on festivals and the planet.
For Schuh click here they stock lots of different makes, so not all vegan but all listed here are
For Sole Trader click here not all their products are vegan but the ones in this article are
For PO-ZU click here These cool cats with their Star Wars stuff are VEGAN
For Toms click here are of April 1st, directing one third of their net profits to the TOMS COVID-19 Global Giving Fund, supporting frontlines of the global health crisis. Not fully VEGAN (yet) but they are giving back loads to the world
For iHeartRaves click here. They have a huge range of rave wear, from boots to masks. Please double check the item as I haven’t full investigated their site.
For KOI click here This lovely lot are 100% VEGAN ‘hell ya’
For WILLS click here These lovely folk are 100% VEGAN AND CARBON NEUTRAL ‘nice one brother’
For Dolls Kill click here please note we are removing and finding alternative suppliers, for the dolls kills footwear – BLACK LIFES MATTER
For Avesu click here these lovely lot are 100% VEGAN
For Rockfish click here and they are VEGAN
For Vivo Barefoot click here
Please hit me up if I’ve missed off your favourite festival shoe?
I will be updating this with my video review/chat and with more in-depth reviews of some of the shoes above 🙂
Thank you to Toms for the link to this site, if your feeling anxious, isolated or just need a bit of support – Click here
We are living through some crazy times right now, keep going and BIG LOVE to you and yours, Alice xxXXxx