fashion

"I wore festival fashion to work for a week. Arseless chaps were involved."

Sydney’s CBD is like all cities during the work week. Think swarms of smartly dressed office workers bustling about the streets and spilling out of coffee shops with their next hit of caffeine. Then one rainy Friday, there was a rogue blonde spotted wandering in the mix, wearing arseless chaps.

The rogue blonde in question…was me.

Let me start at the beginning, because I didn’t just get my arse out for sh*ts and giggles (although, given I will do almost anything for a laugh, I wouldn’t put it past me). It all started at an end of month meeting at my office – I work for the online retailer Showpo, you see. As I’m in charge of what content gets shot for our social channels, the brand manager mentioned we hadn’t been producing enough “festival content.”

Mamamia’s editor, Clare Stephens trials festival chaps… and things got wild. Post continues below.

Video by MMC

So being the irritating smart-arse that I am, I thought, ‘I’ll show you bloody festival content, I’ll just turn up to work in it then’. And that was literally what I did.

My experiment began with me jumping on the festival section online and choosing some stuff – some pieces very extra, others more ‘wearable’ – my primary objective being to look somewhat cute for the Gram.

MONDAY

I wanted to start strong so I got up early to put on ‘festival makeup’ (think glitter, all of the glitter) and fight my hair into bloody space buns. FYI, space buns look ridiculous on most people, let alone a 30-year-old wandering around the central business district.

I then squeezed my bloated gunt into this corset top contraption that LOOKS cute but is hell to get on, spent 10 minutes yanking on fishnets, and finished the look off with a pair of corseted denim shorts (which involved more pulling and yanking, moulding the fat into places it didn’t want to be.)

 

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I Ubered to work and wandered around my coffee shop like a lady of the night in a giant overcoat… THEN, I walked into work having messaged the team to ‘get their phones ready for the reactions’. Alas, not one person in the office so much as batted an eyelid. What a let down.

Featured products: Natural Pretty Top In White, $54.95, Far Fetched Stockings In Black, $12.95, Tamsin Denim Shorts In Black Wash, $42.

TUESDAY

On day two, I opted for pants that require a lack of undies. ‘That’ll shock them,’ I smugly thought to myself while I styled them with a teeny tiny leopard print top, a big hat, and those silly yet trendy sunnies that are so small they barely protect an eyeball.

I’ll let you in on a little secret, there’s nothing more ridiculous than a human wearing a brimmed hat (or any hat really) and sunnies indoors. Unless of course you’re a Kardashian at the airport.

I gleefully told several employees about my sans-knickers situation and received some horrified expressions in response. Great success. Luckily for them really, or else I would’ve had to bust out the nipple tassels the following day.

Featured products: Chilled Vibes Two Piece Set In Leopard Print, $52, Torn In Two Pants In Black, $35.

 

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WEDNESDAY

I had a WAY cuter top from the festival collection prepared for this day. But in true Kelly fashion, poured makeup all over myself and had to rummage through my wardrobe in a real fluster. I thought this outfit was really fun, albeit a little ‘ringleader at the circus’.

I had stupidly bought the pants in a size 12 and although they looked great in the AM (linen flares are surprisingly flattering – you’re welcome), by the mid-afternoon I was wandering around the office offering co-workers to get in them with me as there was so much space. They majorly stretched out throughout the day.

 

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I did go out for dinner after work in this outfit, but to be fair, it only looked festival-ready with my tasselled rainbow jacket. Without it, I just looked like a somewhat normal human with a penchant for the circus.

Featured products: Wanderers Life Pants In Red Stripe, $39Come For Me Denim Jacket In Blue Wash, $56Making Moves Crop Top In Red, $29.95.

THURSDAY

Ahhh, my fave outfit of the week. This cute little playsuit garnered SO MANY compliments and I felt really cute swanning about it in all day. I 100 per cent will wear this cute and fun number again, probably just minus the white OTT accessories.

 

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Being the ‘safest’, most ‘subdued’ festival look, my colleagues were just a), pleased I was wearing something I wasn’t loudly making fun of, b), happy I didn’t have any private parts showing or c), trying to invite them into said item of clothing. I really am HR’s worst nightmare.

Featured products: Got A Baby Benz Playsuit In Rainbow Stripe

FRIDAY

TBH, I didn’t ACTUALLY think I would wear the arseless chaps to work. I had a pair from a drunken decision we’d made a few weeks prior about using them as ‘punishment pants’ around the office (see above note about being a HR nightmare) but never set out to wear them.

I had saved the most risqué for last – a sheer black frock covered with gold stars that I was planning on throwing over a cute black bodysuit.

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But I was feeling really disappointed in myself. All I wanted from the exercise was to make a video about shocking my colleagues with some Lady Gaga-esque ensembles. Yet, all I’d managed to do was gross a few of them out with my anti-knicker stance or make them appreciate our festival range more.

Okay, I am aware the latter is a good thing, but I am an ENTERTAINER GODDAMNIT! I wanted to turn heads; make people laugh; give the HR and PR team minor heart attacks! Was that so hard to achieve!?

So, I put a poll up on Insta and asked what the people wanted to see – a sheer dress or the arseless chaps. And I think you can guess which option won…

 

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I honestly just could not stop laughing while I was styling myself in the morning. Who on earth did I think I was? About to swan about in the city with an ares out that defs wasn’t the arse you see in shop windows. This bottom had junk in its trunk. It was peachy. It had stretch marks and cellulite and a freckle in a questionable spot.

I pulled on my overcoat, jumped (or squeaked – the pleather of the chaps made interesting sounds) into an Uber and headed into work. And THEN, did I get the reaction.

All the Operations boys averted their eyes and blushed as I waltzed passed them. The girls all started laughing and screeching at the top of their lungs. My work husband busied himself with some papers in his lap while he studiously avoided my arse eyes. I had officially gotten everyone’s attention with my arse. I was thrilled.

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Having my bare bum hanging out all day had perks one might not have considered. Firstly, I pee a LOT. Going to the loo got a whole lot easier and quicker. I didn’t have to take off my pants! Just hoist down the undies and go for gold! Secondly, they were far more comfy than I anticipated. Practically cosy if you will.

festival clothing
"This bottom had junk in its trunk. It was peachy. It had stretch marks and cellulite and a freckle in a questionable spot." Image: Supplied.

The biggest surprise from my little self-nominated challenge was the feedback from colleagues, family, friends, customers, randoms on Instagram - you name it. Everyone was so in awe of my confidence and lack of shame, with many a gal telling me in hushed tones that they’d never even have the balls to wear some of the outfits to FESTIVALS, let alone work.

This horrified me. These girls were all younger than me and far more pert. It’s funny, isn’t it? The older you get, the fewer f**ks you give. I don’t have the ‘perfect’ body and I never will. But if walking down Sydney’s busiest street with my entire arse out will make someone smile, then I’ll do it every damn day. And maybe, just maybe, one of those girls who laughed might feel a bit more comfortable in their own skin.

In real life, none of us look like the girls on Instagram (hell, even they don’t look like that) so if you want to wear something, just go for it I say. And bloody SLAY that style.

Featured products: So Bling Dress In Red Chain Print, $35, Mad Max Pants In Black Leatherette, $52.

Do you throw caution to the wind and wear festival fashion going about your daily biz? Let us know in the comments.

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