No single event runs as deep into the national identity as the Melbourne Cup. The pinnacle race day in the spring racing season attracts race goers and the fashion faithful like bees to the rose beds that line Flemington’s celebrated concourse. This year the anything-goes aesthetic was slightly reminiscent of London’s Carnaby St – a pleasantly clashing show of sartorial colour and dedication to highly-evolved style.
Femininity was in abundance with a resurgence of ornate fabrics that ranged from rich floral brocades to heavy embroidered lace. Surface interest was taken to new extremes with detailed beading and textured jacquard that was fashioned into shift shapes or maxi styles. Sleeves were strongly relevant and were either slender in form, bell shape or softly gathered. Key colours included parchment white and blush pink shades with pops red, dark florals added a more serious demeanour. Floral wreath head pieces and boater hats were the preferred finishing touch along with studded clutches chain strap bags.
This year was a confirmation that double and single breasted jackets enjoyed equal popularity by the gents and the peak lapel six button blazer was a key wardrobe investment. The occasion also commanded tailored variations on a theme to include ostentatious checks, punchy pinstripes and cutaway shirt collars. Yesteryear’s bow ties were replaced by neckties which were accessorised by tie clips and collar pins. The colour palette was suitably opulent and included steel blues, smoky greys and earth tones with highlights of washed out orange and murky reds.