Yass picnic races was literally that – a picnic at the races. This is one of the very few racetracks where you actually BYO everything for a day at the races.
As we get close to Shoalhaven City Turf Club’s Nowra Cup / Girls Day Out, we thought we would talk to our Fashion Judge Sally Martin.
Millinery is a crucial element to ensure your outfit is FOTF fit. In 2018 boaters dominated FOTF compitions across Australia, however, 2019 is set to showcase ladylike elegance in the form of over sized bows. TEA Ambassador Bethany Brajkovich shares why she loves bows
Words by Bethany Brajkovich
A few weeks ago our ACT Ambassador Sally Martin, was invited by her younger sister to attend the Sealink Kangaroo Island racing carnival as her plus one. Sally grew up in Adelaide and said she would take any opportunity to visit family and friends, especially when it turns into a 5 day mumcation.
Held on 14-16 February, it offers two days of racing, Fashions on the Field with the Races SA regional competition and a celebration of Kangaroo Island’s best food and wine. What more could a girl want! Suffice to say Sally eagerly accepted her sister’s plus one invitation!
Sally’s sister works for the Mercure Kangaroo Island Lodge and they were delighted to be their guests. Sally commented “It was such a lovely spot to stay. Can’t praise the restaurant, Reflections enough as the food was incredible. We also partook in some local wines and bubbles which was also just as wonderful. Needlessness to say, we were certainly spoilt over the two days”.
Little did they know, they were both guests of Sealink, and that meant they were also part of the Long Lunch. There is nothing more special than a tray full of bubbles greeting you at the entrance to your marquee! With an Australian themed marquee, the girls were all set for a day of fashion, food and fun – and the races, of course!!!
Sally also surprised herself with her betting knowledge and managed to backed a number of winners on the day. Maybe it had something to do with the “Dudley Bubbly” from Dudley winery she was drinking! Suffice to say – the food, wine and other guests were all so delightful. Sally goes on to say, she had the most amazing time. Being able to spend quality time together with her sister and play ‘dress ups’ was all two girls could want.
The two girls thought they would even give Fashions on the Field a go which had a number of categories and quite a few entrants.
Our gorgeous Sally managed to take out the runner up in the best dressed category winning some great prizes. Included in her goodies bag was accommodation and ferry ride back to Kangaroo Island, so Sally is already booking in to return next year for their 2020 racing carnival.
With so much to see and do on Kangaroo Island including the local produce, wineries, breweries and distilleries – it certainly makes a trip to Kangaroo Island well worth a visit. Be prepared to be enticed to sample all they produce – and that will be more than once!
Words by Sally Martin
Autumn is fast approaching and FOTF ladies are busy planning their Autumn outfits. In Perth this means the iconic Karrakatta Plate Autumn FOTF competition at Ascot Racecourse on the 6th of April. Our West Australian Ambassador Bethany Brajkovich will be there to capture all the fashion and excitement of the day. Here are some tips for what is trending in FOTF this Autumn.
Silver is the new Rose Gold
Boots with skirts and dresses
At racecourses around Australia and New Zealand we are continually noting the incorpation of high end runway looks into racing fashion. Last year when Kerrie Carruci stepped out in the Milva Carruci custom design she put her best foot forward by adding these head turning red pointed boots from Tony Bianco which paired perfectly with this super cute red beret from ASOS. Bethany explains:
‘I love getting a one off outfit made. I enjoy the creative process that allows me to include eclectic elements and merge them seamlessly into a complete look. Previously I’ve worked with both designers and dress makers and find it to be a exciting experience for both of us. One of my favourite memories is going to the track with other ladies who were all wearing custom made outfits from award winning Perth Designer Only One Ashley. We all felt so special and so unique, it was a wonderful experience from start to finish.’
Last weekend, our WA Ambassador Stacey Reynolds headed to her home town for her annual race day meeting. We asked Stacey to take us through what it is that makes this day so special.
Growing up in Waroona, a small country town 15 minutes from Pinjarra Park, Stacey and her family loved their outings to the races. As Stacey grew up these race days became even more important to her – it was a way to catch up with old friends and family that she had not seen in ages. In a country town like Pinjarra, a big race day literally brings the town to a halt with everyone heading to the track for a day of fun, laughter & hopefully a few wins!
Pinjarra Park without a doubt, is Western Australia’s most picturesque racecourse. Its huge array of shady trees and expansive lawns provide the perfect atmosphere for a great day at the races, and for Stacey, the Magic Millions WA Race Day held at Pinjarra Park is one date she has penciled into her calendar every year!
Stacey’s excitement was building up for weeks. She had booked a small shade gazebo through the race club, as all her gorgeous friends were coming and she had the perfect outfit planned (an amazing dress from a West Australian Label, Only One Ashley and a custom made head piece from Love Lotus Millinery). As she had moved away from the area 12 months ago, (to approx. 10hrs north of Pinjarra) the prospect of heading home filled her with sheer joy.
“I could not wait to have that race book in one hand and a glass of bubbly in the other“ Stacey said.
The countdown was on!
Not only was the race day part of the Magic Millions, a series of two races that showcases the rich prize money on offer for graduates of Magic Millions yearling sales in WA, it was the WA Country Cups Peel Fashion On The Field Heat for the Peel Region. WA Country Cups is an initiative by Racing and Wagering WA to foster the development and promote the longevity of country racing across the State. It is a state-wide racing fashion competition, open to fashionistas from all over Western Australia, and consists of nine regional heats held at major country race meetings across WA. The winner of each regional heat receives a trip to Perth and is invited to compete in the WA Fashions on the Field Final to be held at Ascot Racecourse in November. The then overall winner will take home a trip for two to London to attend Royal Ascot plus $10,000 spending money and a $5,000 Linneys jewellery voucher!!
Wowee!! To win a prize like that would be a dream come true. For a country girl like Stacey, this is about as exciting as it gets, so she made it a point to try and attend as many of these regional heats as she can.
“I am just so passionate about country racing as I not only believe it plays a vital role in the sustainability of the racing industry across WA but it also has an important role in the economic, cultural and social development of our local communities. I have seen first hand what these race days can bring to a country town, weather it be the from race goers booking accommodation and boosting the tourism industry or supporting local fashion or retail outlets in preparation for a big day at track“ Stacey said.
The day finally arrives!
The weather gods had shined on the town and it was a beautiful, sunny day. With a huge crowd attending Stacey was once again glad she had booked a shade gazebo for our group. The day was a whirlwind of bets (everyone you talk to at a country race meet has a tip that’s sure to win), fashion, bubbles and friends. Everything Stacey loved about the races. The gorgeous Bernadette May took out first prize for the FOTF competition wearing a striking printed, pleated skirt and her own self made millinery.
Stacey was fortunate enough to be invited into the Magic Millions marquee and had a chance to speak to Barry Bowditch, the Australian Managing Director. Barry spoke of how the Australian Racing Industry has the most progressive racing industry in the world. As only here in Australia was the racing industry so accessible for people to become involved, weather it be as an owner, trainer or simply a race goer. It was fascinating to talk racing with him and discuss the vital role the racing industry can play in bringing vibrancy to a small community. Stacey was interested as why Pinjarra Park (her “home” track) had been chosen as the venue to host Magic Millions in WA. David Houston, the WA manager for Magic Millions explained that Pinjarra Park provided everything Magic Millions was looking for in relation to a picturesque venue and proximity for local stables and race goers travelling to the event.
So, if you are looking for somewhere special to spend the day with your family, a place to go on your holiday or just an escape from the city, experience the excitement of horse racing at this beautiful country racecourse that is Pinjarra Park.
“As a Thoroughbred Events Australia Ambassador for Western Australia, I intended to bring to you my passion for country racing and country racing fashion. WA is a hugely diverse state and I can’t wait to show you all the amazing events it has to offer“ Stacey concluded.
What a fabulous story and we look forward to hearing more exciting stories about Country Racing in WA
It’s all go in Perth:
Perth Punter this weekend we have a lot to look forward to. Not only is it Polo in the City at Langley Park but its also the Magic Millions Kingston Town Classic at Ascot Racecourse. Here are a few tips we have put together to get you through this weekend and the festive season racing carnival.
Its all in the preparation!
The day before:
Getting your race day look right starts inside! If there is one thing that goes hand in hand with a fabulous day out with the fillies its champagne. Before a big day make a special effort to drink a lot of water the day before, between drinks on the day and especially after the big day to avoid a hangover.
Now your body is feeling refreshed get that summer fresh look by getting the quickest and safest tan around, spray tan!!! Personally Beth does not feel her look is at her best without a tan on. Everything looks better tanned.
The big day:
Woohoo its race day, the best day of the week, month, year! To start your day right you need to load your body up with lots of energy so eat a hearty and healthy breakfast. Think smashed avocado on wholegrain toast with a side of mushrooms and a delicious fresh coffee. Don’t forget some water too.
Check in with yourself. How are you feeling about the day? It’s normal to get some nerves before a big day particularly if you are entering Fashions on the Field. How you talk to yourself sets the tone for the day. Instead of doubting your outfit choice, who’s going to be there, etc, tell yourself ‘I look great’, ‘I’m going to have fun’, ‘I can only control me’, ‘I can’t wait to get there’. Then repeat!
(Quote by Brene Brown)
At the track live in the moment and have fun. Take it all in, there is always something fun happening at the track, the horses, the fashion, the food, the larrakins, the punters and so much more!!! You will walk away with more friends, fun memories and laughs.
The day after:
Take it easy and let your body recover. You more than likely have consumed your fair share of food and alcohol, danced in high heels and laughed so hard your belly aches. Enjoy a day to recover by drinking water, eating healthy and resting. While your resting laugh some more while flipping through your photos.
Lots of love
Words by Bethy B (our TEA Tinkerhealth)
Photos by Sharon Lenton (TEA’s own supply)
A fabulous Milliner who showcased for the first time at our event was Rachael Henson Millinery.
Having recently won the latest Millinery Association of Australia’s Design Award 2018, we were elated to secure Rachael to showcase. Her winning piece was a knock out, showing such style and grace. Rachael expresses her work as “a combination of feminine shapes, designed to be a blend of elegance with a dash of high spirits”. And that Rachael does.
Rachael goes on to say “I love helping to create memories of those special moments in your life whether it is a wedding, a special occasion or if you are going to the races”.
Rachael started making hats in 1998. She studied millinery in Canberra, and then Adelaide, Australia, On returning to Canberra, she started her own millinery business and has been making hats for dignitaries, race goers, brides (and their mothers) ever since. Her hats have jetted off all over the world, including to royal weddings. Rachael also makes head wear for theatrical productions.
In 2015 Rachael was fortunate to work for Phillip Rhodes in Melbourne in his workroom for the spring carnival.
Rachael says, “A great hat is like a new pair of shoes or a fabulously cut dress or pair of trousers, it will make you walk confidently with your head held . Why does this happen? I suppose the reason will inevitably be different for everyone, but I suspect the right hat will tap into a part of the personality the wearer likes, and without words, shows this hidden or underused part to the world…. or maybe it just feels good.
Someone wise and anonymous once said ‘Happiness is a New Hat’. While this could be a bit ambitious, the right hat will certainly make anyone feel special. I’ve seen it.”
Good luck Rachael Henson into the talents of the millinery arena
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What a privilege it is to bring to you a Milliner who has taken fashions on the field by storm – the talented Mininery by Mel. Here is her story brought to you by Thoroughbred Events Australia.
Take it away, Mel ….
A little about me:
My full name is Melanie Atherinos and I am the owner, designer and the creative hands behind my Millinery label – Millinery By Mel.
I have always been a very creative person that loves everything pretty and matching, so millinery is the perfect profession for me. I have been very fortunate in my life to have had many opportunities and diverse career paths. After leaving school I studies Child Care where I worked for 6 years on the Sunshine Coast before moving to Mount Isa and being given the opportunity to study Marketing and take up the position as Events and Marketing Manager for a large Hospitality venue in the town. After having my son, I was started my own ‘work from home’ business specialising in Costumes and Event decorating.
After several year my husband and I decided a change was needed and we bought a caravan, packed up our family and started on our next adventure of seeing more of this wonderful country we live in. We spent 3 years travelling around but then decided to return to Mount Isa when our son turned 8 as he wanted a ‘normal’ life again. Outside of millinery my interest include camping, gardening, anything creative.
A little about my business: Millinery By Mel
My business is Me, myself and I…. It started as a hobby and with the help of Social Media and the internet, it is now a full time plus business that sends fascinators both nationally and internationally. In the last month, I have had a dramatic increase in the amount of international sales and I have been sending many designs to countries such as United state, Italy, China, New Zealand, Ireland, England and even Dubai.
Are you from a horse racing family or a fashion family background ?
No – not from either
Before starting to make Millinery, I had only ever been to 1 country race meet and wore a fascinator that I bought off Ebay and stuck a few extra feathers on to match my outfit.
I have ridden a horse once and decided it was better (and safer) for me to admire them in the paddocks. I am fortunate to live only 500m from our towns horse paddocks so I enjoy walking each day with my dog through the paddocks.
My favourite race meets now and definitely the Outback Country Races, you get to meet so many people from all different places and is wonderful to see the effort the ladies from the Stations go to when dressing up.
My greatest fashion belief is that you should always wear what you feel comfortable in – if you don’t feel confident and comfortable in what you are wearing – your true beauty will not shine through.
Have you Always lived in Mount Isa?
I was born in Cowra NSW where I lived for a couple of years before my family moved to the Sunshine Coast where I completed all my school and lived till I was 22. I then moved to Mount Isa for a change of scenery. I have called Mount Isa home for the past 17 years. I love living in the Outback and at this stage have no plans to leave.
Are you single or married with a small family?
I have a small beautiful family consisting of my husband, 12 year old son and a 22 year old stepson. I also come from a small family with only 1 sister. My mum lives in Mount Isa also and is often found helping out in my studio.
My family is my greatest support and fans – followed by my friends. Without these special people in my life I would never achieve my many great successes.
As much as my son says tracing leather leaves and flowers is ‘boring’ he always fronts up to the studio to help when needed. My husband steps in and is a fantastic ‘Mr Mum’ during the busy times and keep the household functioning when I am working long hours.
When did you discover your passion for millinery.
After travelling, I returned to my job as a Marketing Manager and I decided that in my spare time I needed something creative to do. So, I bought a few Millinery supplies from online… little did I know where that first fascinator would lead me to.
For 12 months I continued working as well as making Millinery in my spare time, however the demands of my business became to great and I chose to quit my job and take up millinery full time. Since then I haven’t looked back and I just keep getting busier and busier.
Initially my work space was a table beside my bed in our bedroom, it then took over the spare room and now rent a 2 bedroom unit that is home to the expanding Millinery By Mel Studio.
Did you study or are you self taught?
Learning millinery skills has been a lot of trial and error as well as completing online training through Hat academy. Unfortunately, due to living in Outback Queensland, it can get very expensive and difficult to attend training held on the coast however I was fortunate attend a few workshops including learn skills from Carole Maher and will also be flying to Melbourne later in the year to attend a Louise MacDonald Workshop.
I do look forward to in the future completing further studies and training with well know milliners in the industry. I do not claim to be a Milliner rather just a designer of beautiful headwear, one day my goal is to complete studies in Fashion and Millinery, however at this stage I am enjoying what I am doing.
My favourite material to work with is leather, I love the many ways it can be used and the fact that is it tran-seasonal and can be worn at any time of the year.
The most unique designs I have ever had to make were for a hairdresser for hair shows and were made from many hair extensions.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_media_grid grid_id=”vc_gid:1541132825633-1546ded4-abeb-6″ include=”6246,6245″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Have you been to Melbourne Cup?
In 2016 I attended Melbourne Cup for the first time – we went on a P&O cruise from Brisbane to Melbourne. We had a lovely time in the Home Straight Marquee however this meant we didn’t get to see a lot of the fashion and festivities that Melbourne Cup is renowned for. I hope to make my way back there one day with friends to experience the full week of racing and fashion.
My dream to achieve
To be completely honest – I think I am living my dream (ok maybe my dream has a few more hours sleep in it. LOL)
As I always say…. If you find a job doing something you love, you will never work another day in your life.
This pretty much sums me up, every day I get to go to work and be paid to create beautiful designs. I am so fortunate to work with a large number of lovely ladies who truly appreciate and praise my efforts. It is so rewarding to receive the glamourous photos of the my clients dressed up for Race days.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_media_grid grid_id=”vc_gid:1541132825643-529b50d6-bfbe-3″ include=”6248,6251″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_media_grid grid_id=”vc_gid:1541132825664-f0bdf9db-2607-1″ include=”6252,6250″][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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Photo credits to Julie Lynch