Sparkles, Snakes & Cowboy Boots: A Swiftie’s Guide To Dressing For Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour

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Well, folks, the time we’ve all been waiting for is here: Taylor Swift has officially kicked off the European leg of the Eras Tour, and in a mere few weeks she will be gracing British shores (insert maniacal, unhinged, euphoric fangirling sounds here). Personally speaking — and I’m sure I’m not alone in the feeling — this is major, mega, immense. Perhaps the most important moment of my life; like Christmas, my birthday, the best first date, my wedding  day all rolled into one. This is my Super Bowl, my Joker, and all I’ve been able to think and talk about, ever since the fandom gods graced me in the Midnights fan presale. You see, the last time I was lucky enough to (and able to afford to) see my favourite person perform live, it was on the Red Tour in 2014. Now, I have big girl adult money to spend — the world is my Swiftie-shaped oyster.
You would be surprised then to learn that, with just over a month to go, I haven’t quite chosen my outfit. Call it decision fatigue, call it overly excited procrastination, call it a whole year of watching other fans absolutely nail their outfits in real time on social media, but there’s been a lot to consider. Which era do I honour? Do I just go for a colour-themed vibe or try to replicate an outfit? Maybe I should DIY a look? Make my own version of one of Taylor’s tour looks? Or perhaps there’s a niche lyric association I can make? Not to mention all the practical aspects to consider. Blondie is on stage for a whole three-plus hours, performing a staggering 45 songs. Likewise, unlike some of our counterparts in the US and Australia, the European shows have standing general admission on the floor — I need to be able to stand/dance/scream/cry in comfort.
Photo courtesy of Esther Newman.
Me and my DIY outfit for the London Red Tour show in 2014.
Plus, give me some credit: Taylor has just released a brand new album, The Tortured Poets Department, with 31 new songs to absorb and process (that’s a lot of new lyrics, melodies and stories). And now we know for sure — she's completely shaken up the original set list, rearranging albums, cutting songs (RIP "Long Live") and incorporating TTPD into the show with its own dedicated set. Arguably, the most theatrical of the entire tour. Six new songs, brand new outfits, visuals and choreography!
So, to try to help myself as well as anyone in the same boat, I’ve put together one mega guide to what to wear to the Eras Tour, with tidbits here for everyone — whether you’re a longtime Swiftie like myself or a new fan looking for inspiration. I’ve covered everything from Debut-ready cowboy boots to reputation snakes, plus all the sequins, sparkles and fringing that we’ve come to expect from a TS tour. I’ve followed the set list of the tour as it currently stands, throwing in fan-favourite outfit DIYs, some lyric- and Easter egg-inspired looks and colour themes that define each era.
And if all of this still feels overwhelming (honestly, I get it), don’t stress. Concerts are all about feeling comfortable, safe and secure, whatever you choose to wear — you’ll have the most amazing night whether you’re bejewelled in rhinestones or in your go-to jeans and T-shirt. Likewise, a brand new outfit is an extra expense on top of an expensive experience. Whatever you decide, an easy and budget-friendly way to take part in the Eras Tour magic is by making your own friendship bracelet, as inspired by a lyric from “You’re On Your Own Kid”; from a sweet nod to your favourite song to cheeky inside jokes. This is a great way to strike up a conversation and make new friends if you’re attending a show alone. Plus, once your show is over and the post-concert depression has settled in, you can put them on display in an Eras-themed shadow box.

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re a Lover fan

After the darkness of the reputation era, 2019’s Lover was an explosion of colour, sparkle and bubblegum pop. This was when Taylor “found herself” again after symbolically killing off her past self during “Look What You Made Me Do” (“I’m sorry / But the old Taylor can’t come to the phone right now / Why? Oh, ’cause she’s dead!”).  Lover is also the first album owned by Taylor following her departure from Big Machine Records, so, of course, it has a special place in Taylor’s heart.
Like the literal transition in the “Me!” music video, when the rep snake bursts into pastel butterflies, this time was all about everything that makes Taylor, Taylor. It’s also an era cut short by the pandemic (RIP, Lover Fest), so it’s meaningful to fans that Taylor kicks off the Eras tour this way with lyrics from “Miss Americana & The Heartbreak Prince”: “I counted days, I counted miles [...] It’s been a long time coming.” (I get chills every time I hear this intro).

Colours & themes of the Lover era

The colours most closely associated with Lover are pastel pink, baby blue and lilac. In this segment of the tour, Taylor wears a custom, bedazzled Versace bodysuit, a sequinned Versace blazer (for “The Man”) and sparkly Louboutin boots.
So, if you’re a Lover stan, this is also your time to shine in popstar-ready sequins, blazer dresses and butterfly and flower motifs. For an easy nod to the era, draw a heart around your eye, à la Taylor in the album photoshoot. Other whimsical and romantic themes are winners here, too — just think about the ‘Me!’ music video, which featured cats, a unicorn, princess dresses, candy-coloured cowboy boots and rainbows.

Lover era DIY costume ideas

Feeling crafty? I love how this fan replicated Taylor’s rainbow fringed jacket moment using just paint. If you really want to make a statement, DIY your own 2019 AMAs shirtdress.
To replicate an actual Lover-era look, the “Me!” and “You Need To Calm Down” music videos provide a wealth of inspiration, from Taylor’s pastel suit and ’60s babydoll look to her hot pink fur coat and cat-eye sunglasses
A super-easy DIY that has been all over my TikTok feed are these bedazzled heart-shaped sunglasses. All you need are the specs (which are all over Amazon), super glue, all your leftover friendship bracelet beads and an afternoon in front of the TV glueing (watching the Eras Tour Movie to prepare, perhaps?).

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re a Fearless fan

The Fearless era was when Taylor went from being the talented new face of country pop to worldwide recognition and mainstream chart success. It’s the album that gave us career-defining songs like “Love Story” and “You Belong With Me,” so it was perhaps unsurprising that Taylor chose Fearless as her first Taylor’s Version rerecord and placed it second in the tour set list.

Colours & themes of the Fearless era

Just like her 20-year-old self on the 2009 Fearless tour (gold is the official colour of this era), Taylor opts for glittering gold, fringed mini dresses — it’s so satisfying seeing it glitter as she twirls and skips around the stage. This time around, though, she swaps out her black, knee-high riding boots for a custom pair of cowboy-style Louboutins.
The easiest way to honour the era is with a similarly sparkling gold dress, cowboy boots, Taylor’s signature curls and “13” drawn on the back of your hand. If you want to go all out, you could DIY a sparkly “13” guitar like Taylor’s.

Fearless era DIY costume ideas

Fun nods to the Fearless discography come from the era’s music videos. The hand-drawn band Junior Jewels T-shirt is an easy arts and crafts project (wear with plaid pyjama trousers and you’re ready to collapse into bed as soon as you’re home). If you’re going with your best friend or partner, a great duo idea is band geek Taylor and cheerleader Taylor. Alternatively, channel Princess Taylor from “Love Story” with a white and gold corset top and flowing skirt.

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re a Red fan

Welcome to the first major shakeup implemented by Taylor on the European leg of the Eras Tour: the Red set, which was originally sixth in the lineup, has been moved up to third (originally, when watching the grainy livestream of Paris Night 1, I thought this was to reflect the order of her rerecords but that theory was swiftly — ey, ey — proven incorrect).
Red is clearly one of Taylor’s favourites (the eight new-to-us vault tracks on Red TV, 10-minute “All Too Well” and its accompanying short film directed by Taylor attest to this). As a longtime Red stan, I’m very happy about that. It was her first proper shift into pop, spawning mega-hits like “22”, “I Knew You Were Trouble” and “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together”, and it was her second rerecord in 2021; one of the few revisited eras that truly got time and space to breathe alone, before Taylor moved onto the next or a new album (after almost a year, it was followed by Midnights in 2022).

Colours & themes of the Red era

The Red era has a very distinct aesthetic and not just because of the colour. During the OG Red era, Taylor’s personal style was perhaps best described as twee. She was well known for tea dresses, high-waisted shorts, brogues and Mary Janes, Breton stripes, bowler hats and cat eye sunglasses, most of which made their way onto the stage. The RED tour also saw one of her most iconic performance outfits: a top hat-wearing circus ringleader. She pays homage to the look on the Eras tour with a sparkling red-to-black ombre, sequin bodysuit and matching jacket (a custom design by Ashish).

Red era DIY costume ideas

The easiest way to channel RED energy is with a red dress, a twee-inspired shorts-and-brogue moment or a look from the “WANEGBT” or “22” videos: squirrel pyjamas/glasses Taylor and “not a lot going on at the moment” T-shirt Taylor spring to mind. A more recent, popular source of inspiration is the "I Bet You Think About Me" music video. In particular, red dress Taylor complete with rose headband and lace gloves.

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re a Speak Now fan

Justice for Speak Now! So far, it appears that we're back to just a one song set with "Enchanted" (to make more time for the new TTPD set) but, Taylor is tricksy and so I'm hoping and praying that it will be permanently joined by fan favourite and certified tearjerker “Long Live” once again. Also, for a rendition of Speak Now TV vault track "Castles Crumbling”, a duet with Hayley Williams (especially since Paramore are the European openers). All with the famous koi fish guitar of course. Cue the manifestation circle...
This is arguably Taylor’s most romantic and magical era — “enchanting” you could say. If you’ve seen the OG Speak Now tour footage, you’ll know that it’s one of her most theatrical shows to date, with elaborate sets for each song, including an entire wedding setup for the titular track, a spooky forest for “Haunted” and Taylor’s first floating stages. In fact, the entire thing was staged like a theatre show with red velvet curtains and tap dance breaks from her dancers. I highly recommend watching  the original Speak Now Tour film on YouTube if you’ve never seen it.

Colours & themes of the Speak Now era

To capture the nostalgia of the Speak Now era, sequin babydoll dresses and princess ball gowns like those originally worn by Taylor at the time are your best bets (preferably in purple, the colour of the album). Also a must for this era: a red lip and a carefully chosen arm lyric — something Taylor used to do as a kind of “mood ring” for how she felt each night of the tour. This is the look Taylor is sporting in her latest music video, “I Can See You.”

Speak Now era DIY costume ideas

For a music video look, you have either the old-school flapper vibes of “Mean” or the preppy school girl vibes of “The Story Of Us” (DIY your own storybook poster to carry with you, just in case locals don’t get it).
So far, my favourite DIY Speak Now costume idea has come from this thrifty duo, who dressed as bottles of Wonderstruck and Wonderstruck Enchanted, the two perfumes Taylor released during this era (and which I forever pray she brings back).

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re a reputation fan

Didn’t you hear? The old Taylor is dead (mic. drop.), so if you’re a rep stan, it’s time to throw out the candy-coloured sparkles and cowboy boots in honour of Taylor’s (aesthetically) darkest album. Taking charge of the narrative surrounding the Kim/Kanye phone call drama, Taylor adopted the snake — a symbol originally used against her — as the motif of the era, especially the imagery of a snake shedding their skin in order to regenerate themselves. The original reputation tour even featured a gigantic inflatable snake, nicknamed Karyn. This time, Taylor transitions into the era with a digital serpent on the massive LED screens backing and lining the stage.

Colours & themes of the reputation era

If you’re dressing for a “big reputation”, then your safest bet is a lot of black, green, sparkles and snake motifs. Head to Netflix and watch the reputation stadium tour for inspiration — you’ll spot Taylor wearing hoods, bodysuits, knee-high boots, sharp-shoulder jackets, cut-out features and a black manicure to match the mood. On the Eras Tour, Taylor usually has a few different iterations of her outfits that she mixes up for different shows and, most probably, so they can be fixed in between appearances (she has three different gold fringed dresses for the Fearless segment, for example). For reputation she has just one bodysuit: an asymmetrical, one-leg, one-sleeve black and red sequin design with snakes slithering up her body. Some fans have theorised that this is a metaphorical nod to her own reputation in the public eye; others think that she’ll only make any changes when she announces reputation (Taylor’s Version), as she did for 1989 TV (more on this below). Either way, you’ll probably see plenty of fan recreations of this iconic red and black look.

reputation era DIY costume ideas

If you want something a little more subtle, then a newspaper print, inspired by the album cover, is a strong bet. Or try a cheeky nod to a lyric: old-timey “Getaway Car” Bonnie and Clyde, the maps where you buried the hatchet (“End Game”), or a magician and illusionist from “So It Goes…” Anyone brave enough to go as zombie Taylor from the “Look What You Made Me Do” video gets my vote, though.

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re an folklore and evermore fan

Another major change to the setlist was Taylor combining her two pandemic albums, folklore and evermore; described by Taylor as sister albums. Despite have sonic similarities (acoustic, indie folk), they have very distinct aesthetics and energies, and so have divided them up (also, because you never know, Taylor could easily split them up and surprise us again).

Dressing for the folklore era

folklore is Taylor’s first pandemic-era album — a total surprise drop that was announced less than 24 hours before its release and the first project that she released not on her usual two-year schedule (freed from the restrictions of writing for single-release and stadium shows). It’s also her first true alternative album, co-produced partly with The National’s Aaron Dessner and Jack Antonoff who each collaborated remotely. In fact, the very first time they got to perform the songs together was in the Disney+ concert film folklore: the long pond studio sessions. Together they created a lush, folky, rustic world where Taylor experiments with other people’s stories, make up characters, and dip into history and local myth.

Colours & themes of the folklore era

folklore’s key aesthetic is “cottagecore grandma picnics in the woods” so think floral prairie dresses and cosy knitwear (referencing “cardigan”, of course). A plaid shirtdress is a great nod to the folklore: the long pond studio sessions. For the folklore segment of the Eras tour, Taylor turns it up a notch with a rotation of ethereal, floaty dresses that give Stevie Nicks and Florence & The Machine a run for their money and, as it turns out, were potential Easter eggs for the Stevie references and Florence collab on TTPD (honestly, this woman’s mind…). One of the easiest ways to capture some folklore energy is with a woodland-nymph look in a palette of whites, creams, greys and silver, and with light floral patterns. Think evermore vibes but for spring and summer. The way I imagine the folklore aesthetic is as if I’m wearing a cosy knit cardigan pulled over a faded floral dress with a glass of white wine, overlooking the sea at sunset in a rich-white-woman, Big Little Lies style. Whereas evermore is red wine on a gloomy, winter evening, huddled around a roaring fire, casting spells like a witch (you can tell me in the comments if this makes sense).

folklore era DIY costume ideas

If you would rather take on a look inspired by your favourite song, you’re not alone. We’ve already seen silver, sparkling “mirrorball”-inspired outfits and moon/Saturn duos (for “seven”) become fan favourites. For our craftiest Swifties, Taylor’s floaty folklore dresses are DIY catnip; especially her green number.

Dressing for the evermore era

For those whose ears are yet to be blessed by arguably Taylor’s best album (in my humble opinion), evermore is the surprise indie folk sister to folklore. While both Taylor and the collective fandom have acknowledged that folklore lives in the months of spring and summer, evermore lives in autumn and winter. It’s cosier and warmer in tone, with nods to Christmas and the cold drawing in, and so its colour palette is also warmer and cosier.

Colours & themes of the evermore era

For this era, a continuation into the “folklorian woods”, Taylor marries the cottagecore sensibility with something more mystical. Think the witchy vibes of “willow” (a green velvet cloak, vintage-style slip dress and flower crown are a must), the lead and only single from the album. The key colours of this album riff off the album cover, on which Taylor wears a cosy-looking plaid coat: so rust orange, copper, beige and earthy browns.

evermore era DIY costume ideas

With less obvious music video prompts, you can have some fun here. Maybe you could dress as the golden thread? The willow tree itself? An ivy-covered house from "ivy"? A glass of champagne from "champagne problems"? A Wild West-style bandit from "cowboy like me"? You could even take inspiration from the album cover. The world is your evermore-shaped oyster.

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re a 1989 fan

For Taylor’s pop magnum opus, you have a full range of iconic music video looks to choose from: “Shake It Off” (ballet or cheerleader Taylor), “Blank Space” (Taylor stabbing the cake in black lingerie and lace sleep mask), “Bad Blood” (one of The Squad) and “Wildest Dreams” (old Hollywood Taylor in the yellow dress). Alternatively, Taylor favoured matching two-piece sets, Wayfarers, sequinned jackets and skater skirts for the OG 1989 tour, which she continues to reference today. If you want a monochromatic look, the colour here is the light baby blue used on the album cover. In fact, Taylor used the colour blue to Easter egg and hint to 1989 being her next rerecord whilst on tour: the night she announced 1989 TV she began opting for blue iterations of some of her outfits, so a blue ball gown for the Speak Now section, a blue folklore dress and, naturall, a blue sequined two piece for the 1989 set itself.

1989 era DIY costume ideas

It’s easy to reference the 1989 tracklist with your outfit. This album and era are most closely associated with New York City (she opened the original tour with “Welcome To New York”) so NYC-inspired prints are a winner. Likewise, I can’t wait to see “Style” fans nod to Old Hollywood with James Dean and “red lip classic” inspired looks. The most creative (or unhinged, depending on your perspective) outfits pay homage to the seagulls that grace both the original 1989 and new 1989 TV album covers.For an inside joke look, you can’t beat Taylor’s 2014 “no, it’s Becky” T-shirt, which has a special place in Swiftie history.

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re a Tortured Poets Department fan

We were all collectively trying to catch our breath after Taylor absolutely gagged us with her latest release, The Tortured Poets Department, when she went and staggered us even further with a brand new six-song-long set. TTPD or Tortured Poets for short — including the surprise Anthology edition, that’s a whopping 31 new songs that truly live up to the anguished, poetic name; and the tour performances equal that. Just imagine if your favourite pop megastar put together their own Broadway show, with all the theatrics, drama and emoting to match (Taylor may have jokingly nicknamed this section "Female Rage: The Musical", but I don't think she's far wrong. I now want an entire show dedicated to TTPD!).
This album covers everything from heartbreak to the pressures and scrutiny of fame; old flames turned sour, old rivalries turned bitter, then turned bittersweet; mental health and addiction; Taylor’s masters’ ownership struggle. And that just scratches the surface. Simply, though, I think it’s Taylor at her absolute best.

Colours & themes of The Tortured Poets Department era

Primarily, TTPD is associated with the colour white: Taylor wore a white bridal-like gown to announce the album at the Grammys, referenced this look in the music video for “Fortnight”, and then again on stage with a dramatic, corseted Vivienne Westwood gown; inscribed with her own lyrics. As if Taylor is wearing a crumbled up piece of paper torn from the pages of her own songs. She's paired this with a chunky Westwood orb choker with black beads or pearls.
Similarly, the first cover we saw for TTPD (there are four variants) is white and Taylor has been using a white heart emoji to discuss the album on her social media. TTPD is also associated with black — a nod to the cover of the Anthology edition (the surprise second album drop that shortly followed the release) and the darker, grittier topics Taylor is delving into here. We also see her physically transform from white gown to black Victoriana dress in the “Fortnight” video (which is shot in black and white).
Overall though, the TTPD aesthetic is a sepia-tinged, Dark Academia-meets-Case-File, meets the dark side of Hollywood vibe. Taylor teased the album with a library installation littered with Easter eggs and has been playing with a preppy fashion style all year: pleated mini skirts, rugby shirts, loafers, blazers and knee-high boots. Mimic her with an outfit you’ll easily be able to wear again after the show.

The Tortured Poets Department era DIY costume ideas

For a more relaxed approach, I would go the sexy, sultry lingerie-inspired route taken for the cover art. Think, plenty of black, white and grey lace, silky soft fabrics and loose silhouettes — all the better for writhing around your bed in a tortured, poetic way.
If going all out, consider any one of Taylor's stage or music video looks to replicate: a haunted bride (complete with garter and smoky, intense makeup)? Or an unhappy 1920s starlet in tails (with nod to “Clara Bow”)?

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re a Midnights fan

2022’s Midnights has generated a host of great costume ideas, most notably because her return to pop star glam and chart-topping earworm hooks relate easily to the glitzy, sparkle-heavy style that tends to dominate concert fashion. Fan favourites include her “Bejewelled” video bodysuit (you can DIY your own), midnight blue star dress red carpet look, “Anti-Hero” orange hot pants and “Lavender Haze” faux fur and slip moment.

Colours & Themes Of The Midnights Era

This is perhaps one of Taylor’s most comprehensible concepts: Surprise, surprise, the colour of Midnights is midnight blue. You could also run with the nighttime concept of the album, from astrological prints to star chain belts; I love this “he was sunshine, I was midnight rain” duo idea.

Midnights era DIY costume ideas

Inspired by the album cover shoot, Midnights is also the perfect opportunity to pull out your best Daisy Jones ’70s looks. Here’s hoping that someone recreates Taylor’s Miss Bejewelled, Marie Antoinette look, too.

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re a Debut fan

Let’s hear it for the Debut fans! Perhaps Taylor Swift’s most under-appreciated album among the fandom, I’m ready for teenage Taylor’s country twang to have its well-deserved moment when Taylor’s Version drops. Right now, there are no Debut songs on the set list — apart from the occasional acoustic surprise — but again, I hope this changes once we have the rerelease (my Swiftie-since-11-years-old heart will not be able to cope when I hear grownup Taylor sing “Tim McGraw” and “A Place In The World”).

Colours & themes of the Debut era

The staples of any good Debut look are simple: boho summer dresses (preferably white, like the album cover art, or in shades of light green and blue), cowboy boots (shoutout to baby Taylor’s personalised pair which I have been obsessed with since 2006), blue jeans, hoop earrings and an armful of bracelets. For a colour-first look, it’s all about lush summer green, baby blue and white; motif-wise, it’s time to bring back the butterflies and flowers.

Debut era DIY costume ideas

There are some great music video looks to recreate for this era, too, from “Picture To Burn’s” black mini dress, gloves and headband to “Our Song’s” baby blue prom dress.

What to wear to the Eras tour if you’re broke

If you don’t want to buy anything new, I understand — tour tickets are expensive! Thankfully, the colours and vibes of each era are really strong, so all you need to do is pull a monochromatic outfit in the album colour of your choice, draw a lucky “13” on your hand, cover your face/hair/body in glitter, and you’re ready. For a quick guide, here are the colours most commonly associated with each era/album:
Debut: mainly light green but also white and light blue
Fearless: gold
Speak Now: purple
Red: red
1989: light blue
reputation: black and dark green
Lover: pastel pink, blue and purple
folklore: grey (silver if you’re going for a “mirrorball” look)
evermore: amber, beige and brown
Midnights: midnight blue
The Tortured Poets Department: white and black

What to wear to the Eras tour if you can’t pick a favourite era

I’ve changed my mind about which era I want to dress for about 13 times while writing this article. When in doubt, I think a sequin dress in your favourite colour plus cowboy boots is always a winning option, and both are pieces you’re likely to wear again and again.
If you happen to own Taylor Swift merch, then go for that. There’s something very Debut Taylor about a tour T-shirt worn with a denim miniskirt or your favourite blue jeans.

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