The ultimate fete fashion guide. Be fabulous always!
Plan on dressing up more than you would to go to any other fete for the season as in Trinidad these fetes are usually a runway show with some patrons dressed to thrill. With premium drinks and a variety of food options included in the ticket price, all-inclusive fetes are where you go to mingle with the local celebrities, politicians and the who’s who of Trinidad social circles.
Daytime all-inclusive fetes like Beach House and C’est la Vie require stylish yet simpler resort chic attire. Maxi dresses, jumpsuits, rompers, fashionable shorts are standard for women while for men Bermuda shorts, capris, patterned linen shirts and hats are all quite acceptable wear. Local designers are sought out for unique pieces; Rhion Romany, Jin Forde and Christian Boucaud designs can be normally spotted on the fashionistas. Footwear should be comfortable; wedges, flats or nice sandals are perfect, please leave the sneakers at home! Please note that MANY women get professional makeup done to attend all inclusive fetes, go bold with the makeup and certainly get your hair done.
All-inclusive fetes held at night usually bring out the sexy and the stilettos. Expect to see women in daring sexy tops showing off cleavage or back, short skirts emphasizing the legs in high heels, hipster fitted pants showing off the curves and stomach in addition to being adorned with lots of trendy accessories. Rule of thumb is the more expensive the fete, the more dressed up the women are. Furthermore, you see all the latest trends, so if you are not wearing something new you will not be in style. If you need to shop for one new outfit before heading to Trinidad, plan on something you can wear to an all-inclusive fete like Anya’s Canyaval Fete or Frontline. The ultimate all inclusive accessory,is your one of a kind custom designed fete wear; why look like everyone else?
All inclusive fetes: Prestige Fete, QRC fete royale, Central bank , Prime, Fatima Fete, UWI Fete, Mai tai, Fall Out, LIME, Frontline, Beach House , C’est la vie, Flutes, Canyaval fete, Brian Lara All Inclusive, Moka Sunday, LUXX, Mania VIP
Semi Inclusive Fetes:
Similar to the all inclusive fetes, you pay one price and either get drinks included (some fetes offer premium drinks) and/or food in your ticket price. Soca Brainwash, TRIBE Ignite and Scorch Saturday are some of the popular drinks inclusive fetes. Zante includes your ice, chasers, food and you walk with your drinks.Depending on the time of the day the dress code is similar to an all inclusive but more relaxed . You can certainly be more casual at Soca Brainwash than at Beach House for example. Take into consideration the venue and dress accordingly.
Semi Inclusive fetes: Neon, Zante, Mental, Elevation,TRIBE Ignite, Soca brainwash, UV Vibe, Mania
These fetes where patrons go solely for the anticipation of getting SOAKED in the wee hours of the morning are becoming increasingly popular. They can be either cooler , such as iUP or drinks inclusive such as A.M. Beach, with the one common element being that at some point in time you will be SOAKED to your underwear. As a consequence wear anything you do not mind getting wet in, and staying wet in for the rest of the fete. Beach wear coupled with a cover up is advisable, flip flops (AM Beach specifically as it is on the Beach) or sandals. The ultimate wet fete accessory, is the hat that saves your hair.
Wet Fete: iUP, Soaka, A.M. Beach, JAM Naked
Starting at mid-night and going until the sun comes up, these parties like Sunnyside up and Vale test your endurance and fashion sense. What might look good in the night does not look as cute when daylight hits! Here is a tip, walk with sun glasses for when the sun rises; some faces show the stress of the night before more than others, and sun glasses are a God send for the dreaded “morning face”. Make sure and “day approve” your outfit, anything worn or faded might look great at night but show all the sins in the light of day.
Another bit of advice for ladies is to take along some blotting sheets, lipstick, eye liner, wet wipes and body spray in your handbag. As the sun rises you can discreetly go to the wash room and “freshen” up. Lots of these breakfast parties also supply you with toothpaste packs, use them! the ultimate breakfast party accessory is a pair of funky sunglasses.
Breakfast parties: Rise n Roast, Roast Soca Brunch ,Shades, Vale Vibe, Sunny Side Up, Full View,Kairi Breakfast is…
Fetes that encourage you to walk with your cooler stocked with your own drinks, these are the value fetes as they are normally priced at a fraction of an all-inclusive fete. Held at O2 Park, the Oval, Pier 1 and other open air venues cooler fetes such as Fantasy Saturday, are defined as such. These parties are somewhat like the Soca Jam in that they attract a lot of people, but with a wider cross section. You will find middle to upper middle class, foreigners a sprinkling of local celebrities as well as the popular party crowd. The dress code is usually stylish shorts or jeans coupled with a sexy top and comfortable yet stylish shoes (sandals, wedges, and trendy sneakers). You do want to be comfortable enough to hop up on somebody’s cooler, jump up and get on bad, but you don’t want to look like a hot, sweaty mess doing so either. The ultimate cooler fete accessory is your CUP.
Cooler Fetes: Out in South, Bayview, Fantasy Saturday, Revel, Flight Cruise, Vale Vibe Cooler, Shades Cooler, Raw, Blue Range Cooler, Jamboree, Beach House Cooler.
Basically anything that you would wear to a day at the beach or pool makes it on to a day time fete cruise. At night you will find the dress code is cool, casual and comfortable “summer wear” that is not your typical t shirts and shorts. This would be the time to break out your caftans, anything sheer, designer cover ups over designer swimsuits , embellished sandals, all complimented by hats, sunglasses and loads of statement jewelry. Footwear ranges from sandals to wedges, once you are comfortable enough to navigate a boat wearing them. The ultimate fete cruise accessory, a banging body.
Fete Cruise: Frazzled Cooler Cruise, Scorch DDI Cruise, Silent Morning, Candy Coated Cruise, Suits Cooler cruise, Roast cruise
If you are lucky enough to be in Trinidad for Panorama Semis know that most people in the North Greens or North Stands will be decked out in a “crew” T-Shirt/Vest/Baby Tee. Scorch, Island People, Red Ants, Insomniacs, Jamboree among many other promoters offer Panorama Packages for around $650.00TT which include one of the aforementioned garments to wear, food and drinks ALL day and a fun lime with rhythm section and a lot of other drunk people. The ultimate Panorama accessory is redesigning and customizing your crew T shirt. Pan-tees anyone?
It is not necessary to join a crew to enjoy panorama, you can do your own lime walking with drinks, food etc. Some private limes also do the uniformed T-Shirts for their crew as well. An iron on pattern on a T-Shirts/Vests/Baby Tees is cheap yet effective. The other standard panorama wear is shorts, t-shirt/vest, sun glasses and sneakers! You do not want to be in heels navigating the Savannah terrain!
After Carnival Cool Down:
Whether you are heading to Tobago, Maracas or Manazanilla most likely you will end up on a beach so swimwear is the clothing of choice. I advise on wearing a cover-up when you are not taking a swim since candid camera men are notorious for stalking women in bikinis and next thing you know you are unwittingly starring in some post carnival video. Shorts, Capris, sheer draw string pants or even a wrap is an ideal accessory on the beach. The ultimate cool down accessory, a plane ticket to Tobago.
Cooldown : Baewatch, Wine Down, Au Revoir, Afterblast, Tazzed
While not a fete per se, this street party and it’s variations such as A.M. Bush and Sunny Side up J’ouvert fete requires some pre planning. For A.M. Bush patrons often accessorize to theme, you can be sure to see women in wigs, funky socks, tights, boots,makeup and even props. Standard for any j’ouvert is your T shirt which can be altered much like your pan tee, shorts and comfy sneakers or boots. I have seen women go to extra lengths to protect their hair with head wraps, shower caps and hats. The ultimate j’ouvert accessory, lab goggles to protect your faux lash extensions!
These are large affairs with thousands of people, several live brass bands usually held in a large open space such as the Queen’s Park Savannah for Army fete. Two things are most important when dressing for these fetes, comfort and comfort. This is the time to wear your shorts, leggings, jeans, flats and sneakers. Trendy urban wear is standard. With that many people you want to safe guard your toes as well as be able to jump and wave all night to the live bands.
The only accessories you need are a flag, rag or bandanna to wave on instruction and someplace safe to stash your money. Unlike the exclusive all-inclusive, these fetes tend to attract a cross section of society, with many exuberant young boys who might get into fights or try to pick your pocket. Leave all flashy or expensive jewelry at home. The ultimate soca jam accessory,is a crew flag.
Soca Jam: Army Fete, Fire Fete, Chutney Brass, Soca Monarch Finals
Your favourite soca artist in concert, expect to see Machel Monday, Kes “Tuesday on the Rocks” and Destra QoB Wednesday this year. Dress code is comfortable,as it is usually a long night. The ultimate concert accessory, your VIP access pass. Who says backstage?!