I haven't been to the actual spring racing carnival since 1997, when I was living in Melbourne and working in marketing for one of the sponsors. When your first Melbourne Cup experience involves plush sponsor marquees and the exclusive enclaves of the Birdcage, it's a little bit hard to squash in with the hoi polloi!
But I still like to celebrate Melbourne Cup every year. I frock up, wear a hat all day long, study the form guide and place my bets. I like to lunch with my girlfriends too.
I have one major issue with the timing of the Race that Stops the Nation. Did anyone think of all the parents? Hello, the race is at 3pm. School pickup time. How rude! In past years, I've been smart and prebooked after school care for Cup Day. Now that Boyo is terribly grown up, he can get himself home from school. No need to miss the race, and no school run driving means
Champagne is on the menu.
Now, that's all well and good but I know what you really want to know about is the frockage and
the hattage. Am I right?
Katies have brought out a gorgeous range of spring racing dresses, just perfect for the spring racing carnival. I'm thinking Christmas party season and date night-worthy too.
I selected three Katies spring racing dresses, and whipped up a little DIY hat action for each. It took me under $50 and less than an hour to to create four hats, using my glue gun and bits and pieces hunted and gathered from Spotlight and $2 shops. I was having so much fun, I created another hat from an old headband, a bow and a little bit of mesh.
Katies Spring Racing Dresses | Ribbon Tie Waist Dress
The ladylike Ribbon Tie Waist Dress is perfect for Derby Day, which kicks off Melbourne Cup Week. Traditionally, black and white is worn.
I've teamed this dress with gold glitter shoes, belt and clutch, a pair of black crystal earrings,
and created a black and white hat.
The Ribbon Tie Waist Dress features a V neck and mesh tulle fit and flare silhouette - oh so flattering! I just adore the retro cute styling of this gorgeous dress, with its nod to 50s glamour.
It's very Kimba!
For my black and white hat, I used a sinamay base, leaf shape cluster and flower, a ribbon covered headband, some white netting and my glue gun. I glued the base onto the headband, then the leaf cluster and finished it with the flower. I threaded the netting in the space between the base and
I purchased these pieces from Spotlight and it took no skill at all to create
- just the ability to use a hot glue gun!
Katies Spring Racing Dresses | Beaded Neck Trapeze Dress
The Beaded Neck Trapeze Dress is available in classic black and the gorgeous rich cobalt blue I'm wearing here. Melbourne Cup Day is traditionally a day to make a bold statement and wear colour.
I've teamed this flattering and oh so fun dress with coordinating nails, a tropical fabric clutch, jewel toned statement earrings and that most flamboyant of feathers, the peacock!
This slice of gorgeousness from the Katies Spring Racing Dresses collection is so different from the dresses I usually wear. I was just drawn to the colour, and the layered design. The beaded neckline is reminiscent of an Eygptian collar and makes quite the glamour statement.
For my peacock hat, I used a spray of peacock feathers, a sinamay base with attached comb, and a sequinned bird motif. It was a simple matter of holding the pieces on my head to work out the best placement for me. Armed with my trusty glue gun, I then fixed the pieces on top of each other.
To add another level of glamour, a piece of polkadot netting can be threaded behind
the comb to create a veil.
Katies Spring Racing Dresses | Lace Yoke Dress
Ladies Day, or Crown Oaks Day, is the perfect opportunity to unleash a little feminity
with lace, flowers, feathers and a ladylike silhouette.
I teamed the Lace Yoke Dress from the Katies Spring Racing Dresses collection with green leopard print heels, a studded resin clutch, statement tortoiseshell earrings and a peach rose, netting and feather hat for a tough pretty look.
Featuring a tiered silhouette with lace insert and capped sleeves, this dress is oh so flattering. The little hint of lace is demurely sexy - it is a thing!
This dress is a little different to the usual style I would select, but I really wanted to see how it looked on. I have to say, it is one of those gorgeous dresses which transforms on the body. This was the Welshman's favourite style.
To create this prettily girly hat, I simply pinned a fabric rose brooch onto a sinamay base with attached comb and wedged a feather cluster inside the brooch clasp. Using my glue gun, I glued a few petals in different shapes to disguise the clip. To complete the hat, I threaded some pretty polkadot net behind the comb.
Are you going to be heading to the Spring Racing Carnival this year?
Which of the Katies Spring Racing Dresses I've selected is your favourite?