The Gilded Ferris Wheel Awards: Who Was the Most ‘Coachella’ at Coachella This Weekend?

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Bring us your flower crowns, your crocheted rompers, your body chains: It’s our first annual Gilded Ferris Wheel Awards, the definitive ranking of the most committed Coachella-goers when it comes to the institution of “festival fashion.”

For the past three days (more if you count all the #tbt posts to last year’s bacchanal), our social-media feeds have been awash with celebrities, Instagram It-girls, and Victoria’s Secret models turning the Indio desert into their own personal runway. The festival is one place where looking “effortless” is not the goal—while track pants and T-shirts may be de rigueur back in L.A. and New York, choker necklaces, fringed bandanas, and acres of taut, tanned skin might as well be a local ordinance once you pass the Palm Springs city limits.

As it turns out, projecting one’s inner free spirit tends to produce a very specific aesthetic, and every year, there are a very few stars who really epitomize the look. Read on for our top picks from weekend one, and check back next Monday to see if the second round of Coachella attendees manages to one-up them.


Kendall Jenner

While her sister scored points for mermaid hair and a raver-worthy sequin bikini, the elder Jenner really doubled down on the boho vibes, following head-to-toe crochet with a lace bralette worn as a top (all the better to show off her nipple piercing, natch). She didn’t skimp on the beauty front, either, sprinkling glitter in her hair—something mere mortals might shy away from, lest it invite suspicions of dandruff—and opting for the wildly popular pigtail bun look. All in all, a commendable effort for the 20-year-old model.


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Vanessa Hudgens

The reigning queen of Coachella again put up a strong showing, kicking off the weekend with a custom festival manicure (heavy on the bling, naturally) and following it up with a forehead full of face gems, a floral caftan, and an array of gold chokers—which, as Taylor Swift says, were the new flower crown at this year’s festival. While her outfit above might look a little tame for a girl who usually looks like someone got a little overzealous with their Talitha Getty mood board, there are some telltale details that clinch her second-place win: the flash tats on her ankle, the pot leaf Jacquie Aiche shirt around her waist, the feathers flowing in her hair, and, of course, that damn inflatable swan.

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Chiara Ferragni

She of a million costume changes at Fashion Week did not disappoint at this year’s festival—in the course of 72 hours, the Blonde Salad blogger managed to cycle through at least a dozen Coachella trends: a bandana adorned with pom-poms (which, per Vogue, are the “new fringe” this year), a tie-dye T-shirt worn as a dress, bindis, stickers, and face gems galore, and piles of heavy-looking silver jewelry. She always wins points for the utter unattainability of her festival looks: a quilted Chanel backpack to tote around her water and sunglasses, a black lace dress to chill by the pool, and full-glam-squad hair and makeup every day. Congrats, Chiara, #TheBlondeSaladNeverStops, indeed.