Known historically as the ‘sport of kings’, horse racing dates back to the 1500s, when British aristocracy wanted an excuse to mix and mingle in high society, with a strict dress code ensuring the royal tone of the event was maintained. And so, it continues today.
Whether it’s the thrill of watching exceptional equine champions compete for glory, the rush as your horse bags a win, or getting a piece of the sartorial action, there are a lot of reasons to head to the racetrack… and not just for the ladies.
Men, this is your chance to step up your style game and we’ve got all the stylish secrets ahead to make it a dazzling one. Enjoy.
A spectacle of racing will entertain the crows, celebratory bubbles will clink and fabulous fashion will feature because, for as long as we can remember, fashion has been inextricably entwined with horse racing.
And although fierce competition between trainers, drivers and breeders is a timeless feature of the sport, the fashion stakes too are high as stylish racegoers prepare for this iconic event.
Off the track, hats, shoes and dresses which are as colourful and creative as the jockeys’ silks will as ever draw eyes from the national and international world of fashion, at this year’s Cup and Show Week.
Despite – or perhaps even because of – fashion’s increasingly casual constitution, the opportunity to honour a much more traditional aesthetic when it comes to refining a race day look offers an exciting change of sartorial pace for most.
Irrespective of the conservative nature of the day, there’s still plenty of room to have some fun with fashion. Hats, fascinators and block colour are just some of the ways you can stand out from the style crowd.
Finding that perfect pair of shoes to wear at the race-track can be a frustrating process, especially if you’ve filled long, fruitless hours trudging from shop to shop with nothing to show for it but blisters and disappointment.
Is it too much to ask for a pair of shoes that both flatter our feet and go with our race-day outfit; that draw lovely compliments; that are comfortable, and can be worn more than once? One shoe retailer ticking all these boxes is WINK Shoe Store – it’s a riot of colour as the change of season brings the dressiest, comfiest shoes in a glorious spring palette.
Kathryn Wilson showcases slides in black and white stripes, lollipop plaids, leopard-print and shimmering silver, while sandals in pastel pinks and blues, butter yellows, moonlight whites and dreamy florals feature in the Miss Wilson range.
Stegmann, Django and Juliette, Oli, and Top End keep tootsies cool in mesh and cut-out designs, and Eos and Origini flaunt fabulous low-heeled and platform-wedged sandals.
Once you’ve found your perfect shoes, cast an eye over the small but select clothing collection, featuring labels like the romantic Briarwood, the edgy Elk and the avant-garde C.Reed, all renowned for their commitment to creating quality, unique garments constructed from beautiful fabrics to make you stand out in the crowd.
Find WINK Shoe Store at Shop 5, 1027 Ferry Road, Ferrymead and on Facebook and Instagram. Shop online and find opening hours at www.ilovewink.co.nz.
For a stunning Cup Day outfit, the team at Magazine Designer Clothing can dress you from top to toe.
Choose from the beautiful selection of predominantly New Zealand-made designer clothing and an exquisite range of accessories to complement your outfit, including jewellery, fascinators and bags. Whether you are off to the races or need an outfit for another special occasion or event, the Magazine team can help create your individual look with feminine, flattering and contemporary clothing, tailored to suit your lifestyle and personality.
Working closely with New Zealand designers to ensure most of the range is exclusive to the store, the business also has its own label, Magazine.
Stocking sizes 10-26, the friendly staff can find your perfect style – whatever your size, age or the occasion. Offering an exceptional in-store experience, they have extraordinary styling ability, masses of creativity and fashion flair – and an absolute commitment to deliver the ultimate service.
Christchurch Casino New Zealand Trotting Cup Day – 11 November 2019 – is one of the hottest events on the Christchurch social calendar. So it’s not surprising that we’re already turning to magazines, celebrities and designers for inspiration. After all, for almost as far back as memory permits, horse racing has been entwined almost inextricably with fashion.
Liberating, playful and just occasionally dismissive of convention, Cup Day is one of the few times of the year when you can get away with extreme patterns, bold colour combos and out-of-this-world headpieces, while over the top accessories are par for the course.
Despite the bold vibrancy of racewear, there’s quite critically a dress code and it errs on the side of tradition. So while dresses or trouser suits can be worn, as can strapless and sheer-strap styles, a jacket or blazer and a fascinator or hat will add the regal touch that is deemed necessary for a day at the races.
Fashion Week – both in New Zealand and Australia, or New York’s very own – is packed with inspiration and this year is no different. One of the hottest trends to emerge this year is the trusty two-piece or ‘co-ord’ set.
The winner of the crown at Auckland Cup Day’s Style Stakes this year took out the top prize with a classic two-piece suit by New Zealand designer Adrienne Winkelmann, accompanied with a straw hat.
Meanwhile, Australian designer Alice McCall has used the 1960s as the inspiration for her latest collection and one of the featured pieces is a woven metallic two-piece, showing that yes, metallic too is back.
With many designers going for monochrome or metallic this year, it gives off the sense that Gatsby is back in town. Layered slip dresses are defying all expectations this year thanks to designer Micheal Lo Sordo. By adding a feather fascinator on your perfectly styled hair, you may as well be in a time machine back to the 1920s.
Another trend we’re expecting to see a lot this year is a delicate floral designs which have been coming through strong from numerous leading designers. Cup Day is, after all, poised to give a nod to the season of new beginnings and nothing says spring like blooming flowers.
But perhaps the biggest trends of the year is the midi dress. It is a safe, comfortable option which looks fabulous on anyone. Buy well and you can keep this stylish staple in your closet ready to dress up and down for the rest of the year.
Most importantly, have fun with your fashion, embrace racewear and its traditions but make sure to let your personality and individual style shine through.