Fashion Friday – What our Kiersten Duke wore on Epsom Day

Epsom Day, a day that should be in any avid race goers diary as Royal Randwick hosts one of the most prestigious days in the Spring Racing Carnival calendar.  The TAB Epsom Handicap is a race held over 1600 metres and is worth a jaw dropping $1,000,000!  The day itself is worth $3,835,000 in prize money and includes three group 1 races, two group 2 races, two groups 3 races, one listed race and a benchmark 88 sprint which attracts some of the best trainers, jockeys and horses from around the globe.

Our Kiersten headed to Royal Randwick and here is her personal race day experience.

As the day arrived the sun was shining and despite the wind, it was a relatively pleasant day- although the breeze did leave me feeling grateful that my dress had long sleeves!  

The first part of my outfit that I bought was the dress.  Straight away the baby boy blue colour covered in pink and yellow floral print caught my eye.  Admittedly, I would usually aim to wear something a little longer in length to the races (something I’ve learnt as I’ve grown older) but the high neck design complete with ruffles and pleats sucked me in- how was I supposed to resist?!

The extra lining and light, breathable material of this dress made it beyond comfortable to wear and I would highly recommend it to anyone I know!

BRAND: Unique21
COST: $54.16 AUD (30 GBP)

I was lucky that the floral print had so many pretty Spring colours in it, which made finding accessories to match extremely easy.  So to help me decide which colours to pick out, I contacted Tenaea Ljilja who owns and runs Pink Lily Millinery (Instagram @pinklilymillinery) with a photo of my newly purchased dress.  I chose Tenaea to help me as all her designs are handmade and cost under $200!  Beauty that won’t break the bank!

Tenaea decided to bring out the blush baby pink colour in the dress and made that her base colour when designing the millinery before adding yellow and white detailing in the flowers on the side of the hat.  As the piece was being designed for the Spring Carnival I wanted to incorporate lighter fabrics that would be suitable for the warmer weather.  Being a complete professional, Tenaea read my mind and the whole millinery piece was made from a blend of straw, silk and cotton.

BRAND:  Pink Lily Millinery
COST: $150 AUD

With my dress and millinery purchased and matching, I felt like the harder decisions had been made and all that was left was to find some matching accessories to complete my outfit.

For accessories, my go-to places are always the same… Lovisa Jewellery (AUS), Primark (UK, IRE), Addison Road (AUS, USA, UK, NZ), Colette by Colette Hayman (AUS) and Boohoo (Worldwide).

As per, they didn’t disappoint and I managed to find everything I needed within the first three shops I visited- winning!

Blush/dusty pink earrings with baby pink jewels and gold metal detailing.
BRAND:  Primark

Natural blush clutch bag with gold metal details.
BRAND:  Colette by Colette Hayman
COST:  $29.99 AUD

Queens Park Skinny Pink Patent Leather Belt with Gold Buckle in size XS to fit my waist.
BRAND:  Addison Road
COST:  $39.00 AUD

EXCLUSIVE OFFER!  Use code KIERSTEN30 with Addison Road to get 30% off any purchases store wide!

In typical ‘Kiersten’ style, I only realised the afternoon before the race meeting that I had left my light pink heels back in the UK.  This meant only one thing- last minute panic shopping with your bestie! (Mini shout-out to Abiee for supporting me through out this stressful time)

After frantically tapping away online I discovered my local Target had a pair of heels in the perfect colour- how about that for luck!

Although I usually find a block heel a little ‘clumpy’ looking, I was grateful that the heels were low, as I anticipated I would be on my feet for the majority of the day (which I was).

BRAND:  Target
COST:  $35.00 AUD

I loved the colour of these shoes and the height of the heel was perfect for all-day wear but unfortunately I wouldn’t recommend them as they gave me blisters on both feet.  Luckily, on the day I had remembered to bring plasters with me so no harm was done but due to this I definitely wouldn’t purchase them again.

Tips, tricks and what I’ve learnt so far…

– Keep it classy ladies!  The races are an elegant event that doesn’t require mini skirts and cleavage displays!  Wear what you would see as suitable for a wedding and you can’t go far wrong.
Tip:  Keep your dress knee length or longer

–  Millinery should be made out of appropriate materials depending on the season.  Play it safe with lace and leather as they are trans-seasonal.

–  It’s not appropriate to take your heels off half way through the day so opt for low heels that are comfortable.

–  Keep your hair and make up simple.  Keep the big smokey eyes for the clubs but can always put on a pair of false eyelashes to add emphasis to your eyes.  As for your hair, you never know how windy it’s going to be so I would recommend a simple updo or pony tail to keep it out of your face and the attention on your millinery (I learnt that tip the hard way!- your hair stuck to your lip gloss isn’t a cute look!).

– Match your nail polish to your outfit or opt for a clean, fresh natural manicure.

– Closed in court style shoes always look great in Autumn and Winter, however in the warmer seasons feel free to let your freshly painted toes breathe in a pair of cute strappy heels.

–  Last but not least, know your colour palette.  Bright and pastel colours always look great throughout Spring and Summer where as navy, burgundy and more earthy colours suit Autumn and Winter looks.

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog post, I hope you found
a useful tip for next time you visit the races.  I’m lucky and extremely grateful to have Sharon to guide me with my style, but for those of you that don’t have a Sharon in your life then please stay tuned as return with another ‘What I Wore’ post including some more tips and tricks after The Everest race day!