HOW TO | Dress for the Spring Races

Avid racegoer or amateur, now is the time to start planning for the Spring Racing Carnival. Whether you’re in for the long haul—Caulfield and beyond—or just the famous Melbourne Cup he who plans early is the best dressed. With at least five key race days, five different outfits are required and dusting off last year’s look just won’t cut it. Dress for the occasion, treat yourself to a new suit or three and get into the racing spirit.

Step One: Make an Appointment to See Your Tailor

With a four to six-week turnaround for most made-to-measure suiting, now is the time to start marking your sartorial territory. Choose a cut that allows free and easy movement, and think about light and durable fabrics such as all wool or wool-mohair blends, particularly if you must wear your blazer all day. Accessories will give you the refinement and variety that you need to stand out. Pocket squares, shoes, ties, cufflinks and hats allow you to express your individuality, but do so with sophistication.

Step Two: Know Your Key Race Dates

Caulfield Guineas (8 October) – Marking the beginning of the season, suits can be a little more relaxed. Accessorise with lighter colours such as lavender.

Caulfield Cup (15 October) – Setting the tone for the coming weeks, pull a look together with a white rose as the official flower.

Derby Day (29 October) – Dress to impress and stick to a black and white colour palette. Match your tie and pocket square with a cornflower, the official flower.

Melbourne Cup Day (1 November) – The premier day of the season- go to all lengths to increase your chances of winning on and off the field.

Oaks Day (3 November) – Known as ladies’ day, choose a suit that complements your partner and adorn with a pink rose.

Stakes Day (5 November) – Let your hair down for the last event of the Carnival. With a distinctly younger feel, suits and accessories can be more flashy and adventurous. 

Step Three: Knock ‘Em Dead

Racing encourages you to be stylish all year, not just October until November. Make the most of your new suit and wear it again at a wedding or the office, and with a winning bet and the first compliment of the day it’ll pay for itself. Are you race ready?