Whether you like racing or not, the probability of you having a bet on Melbourne Cup is pretty high, as are the chances you lose your hard-earned money. One part of the day where the odds can be in your favour however, is in the style department.
Melbourne Cup is the day of all days in the racing crowd, as well as being a huge day on the social calendar where gents and ladies comes from across the country to show off their best racing style, and enjoy what traditional elements are left of the sport. The Cup is also one of the only days of the year where it's acceptable to dress bright and loud, and sport something you wouldn't usually have the confidence to wear.
This year, instead of discussing the tailoring aspects of suiting, and showcasing suiting over the $1,000 mark, we decided to take some affordable, off-the-rack suits from Joe Black and show you three winning styles to incorporate into your race preparation.
You can't go wrong with a crisp, cobalt blue suit. Wear it as a three-piece and pair it with a crisp white shirt and striped tie for an utterly traditional race look. You can certainly add some brightness with the colour of your pocket square, but here we've used a plain white square, folded sensibly, for a simple look - this outfit is the safe option, for gents who like minimal colour.
For your shoes, a brown leather derby or oxford will be your best option and complete your look. Make sure you get a comfortable pair and wear them in, as there's nothing worse than sore feet when it comes to race day.
The rest of your accessories are free to be experimented with, and open for you to add your own personal touch. In the racing season however, a fresh flower pinned on your lapel is a must-have. Melbourne Cup's traditional flower is the Yellow Rose, so a trip to a local florist the day before the event will add an excellent touch and show the ladies you're more than just a pretty face. If you can't find one or don't have the spare time, try and find a lapel pin with a fake flower or flowery design.
Being out in the sun all day certainly takes its toll, so also ensure you have a clean pair of sunglasses, and consider wearing a cream boater hat to exhibit the traditional aspect you're already going for. A clean, leather dress watch will show attention to detail and impress many.
In the wardrobe this may not draw your eyes, but try it on and these colour combinations will work magic. The light grey mixed with the pink and navy contrast perfectly for a balanced, yet bright look. Try and keep the patterns lively and obvious, as we are trying to move away from office suiting. Here we incorporate a wide pinstripe into the suit, a gingham check in the shirt, and a small polka dot throughout the tie. Although this may seem like too much, keep in mind that this is the Melbourne Cup, so it's quite acceptable.
For the accessories, keep things similar to the first look. Brown leather shoes, a straw hat and some sleek shades will finish things off superbly.