Nu Rave

“Recently I’ve been becoming really enticed by this season’s “new rave” trend, as I love bright colours and weird patterns but I don’t have a clue how to go about dressing myself in lurid, dayglow colours without looking like a clown!”

The Nu Rave look is tricky to pull off, since I feel quite strongly that neon colours were probably never created with the intent of people splashing them onto clothes. When you think about it, garish green, shocking pink, eye-watering yellow & brain-crushing orange don’t really go with anyone’s skin tone. I mean, yes, it can be worn, but it’s not neccessarily flattering.

However, cautionary tale aside, obviously you want to pick up on the trend, so here are some ways to do it!

Secret Genius Tip
I think the way to master the “nu rave” look is to imagine you’re a senior citizen, & you’ve just caught the bus to Atlantic City to do some gambling for the weekend. However, while you were packing, your cruel grandchild spiked your tea with psychedelics. Now: dress accordingly.

Try to keep neon colours away from your face as much as you can. It’s really easy to look washed-out or ill if you’re wearing the wrong colour under your chin.

Those House of Holland t-shirts have been a huge hit & sell for a keen price on Ebay. Chain stores have picked up on the trend & you can now buy a knock-off for a pittance. Over here in Australia, Supre has a whole lot of white t-shirts with “BAD HAIR DAY” & “LOVE YOU LONG TIME” printed in neon green. If you’re not sure how long the trend (or your interest in it) will last, going for one of these cheaper, “gateway” items might be your best bet.

Ksubi jeans

On your bottom half, try wearing colourful leggings, skinny jeans in sky blue or lime green, or a bubble skirt with crazy stockings underneath. Ksubi (pictured above) have an incredible range of wild skinny jeans, & Urban Outfitters have skinny jeans in fuschia, green & blue.

As always, colourful accessories are the way to go. Buy some crazy platform sneakers or cheap fake Converse & cover them with paint & sequins & gee-gaws. Buy a plain tote & spray a stencil on the side in hot pink paint. Load up on colourful jewellery, neon wigs & silly sunglasses. Paint your nails white or neon.

I had a look around Patricia Field’s online shop &, other than having a huge crush on her, I discovered she sells a whole lot of things which will supplement your look. For example:

Sequin visor

Sequinned visor, $22, in a huge range of colours.

Bambi t-shirt

Mighty Fine retro Bambi t-shirt, $36. I looooove this.

Sequinned shorts

High waist sequin shorts, $74. (Okay, not strictly nu rave, but totally hot nonetheless.)

Neon sunglasses

Neon splatter sunglasses, $16, & again, a huge range of colours.

Tripp dress

Tripp zebra tunic minidress, $48. (Not strictly nu rave either, but you could rock it.)

Lip clutch

Timmy Woods lip purse, $250 & worth every CENT goddamnit. It’s SO Amanda Lepore.


Psychedelic Daisy t-shirt, $36. Very easy to wear.

Fanny pack

Bling sequin “fanny pack” (bum bag), $24, every colour under the sunnnnn.


For the brave (& those well-acquainted with an eyeshadow brush), my friend Sophie (right) rocks this neon rainbow makeup like it was designed for her. I think she looks AMAZING. Might be something to try!

Finally, something from the Urban Dictionary

“Nu Rave is when rich young children ‘rave’ in a licensed venue, listening to average indie pop bands who call themselves Nu Rave to get the rich young kids to buy their records and make them and their record companies/the venues money.

“Hey Ollie are you coming to Koko Nu Rave night tonight, it’ll be jolly good fun. We can buy GLOWSTICKS and wear colourful trousers and act all kerayzeeeeeee, then we can come back to mine and get Jeeves to russle us up a couple of VODKA AND TONICS!….. man”

Wink wink, nudge nudge! Have fun!

Extra For Experts:
Poprave Blog is an awesome blog designed for followers of nu rave culture, with recommendations for clothing, shoes, vinyl toys & all manner of ridiculousness.