This may come as a surprise to some, but Horse Racing is not mandatorily conservative. Whilst it has its traditions firmly planted in blue blooded lines, 'the races' is an observation of human extravagance, tempered only by the influence of style guides (ironically like this one). When considering your outfit this year for the spring carnival season, look away from the standard options and consider making a statement. Why should the fillies, on the track and off, be the only ones turning heads? It's time to add a splash of colour or consider a new style in 2013 to keep up with the rest of the field.
The mainstay of any racegoers wardrobe is a traditional two-button suit, assumedly well tailored and slim cut. These suits never fail to look immaculate when combined with the optimal accessories or tie, and will maintain their sharpness while you lose yours courtesy of a few race-day drinks. Consider using this as an opportunity to break away from traditional conservative colours like black and navy.
To stand out this year adopt some colour into your repertoire. Blues are on trend this season, so be prepared to forgo the traditional dark navy for a lighter or brighter hue. Australian conditions also compliment lighter coloured suits well, so grey, sand and khaki colour variants are worth consideration. Traditional suits in conservative colours are also very effective, as they allow you more freedom and creativity in shirt/tie selection, and the use of accessories.
Not for the faint hearted, but they will stand out and they will create a powerful, dignified and timeless profile. The downside to this style is that it should remain buttoned up whilst being worn, which may lead to heatstroke in Australian conditions, so pay attention to the weather.
What is undeniable however is that the suit itself creates an aura of sophistication. With this look it is best not to venture too far away from established colours, as the cut itself is a statement. For those underneath 6ft tall, consider a light pinstripe that can visually lengthen the torso.
The use of accessories to create an outfit does not mean dressing down, but can often lead to a polished outfit with an exceedingly effortless vibe. Consider pairing a royal blue blazer with tan or khaki chinos for a summer feel. Taking this option also leaves numerous avenues for creativity with accessories.
A safe white pocket square suits all manner of jacket colour schemes, and adds that 'extra effort' feel to an outfit that makes it memorable.
Wearing chinos can also allow, weather permitting, shoes that can be worn free of socks for the sartorially adventurous. Add in personalised touches such as cufflinks, rings and watches to round out the look.
The abundance of colour on display will allow you to rock an exciting new look with impunity. If you don't believe me, look to any of the albums of Melbourne Cup wear from the past few years and tell me you cannot see a growing trend.
The European summer saw the rise of powerful red and orange colours, with the burnt pastel options proving to be a hit. Be a man and seize the day to showcase a new colour range, but demonstrate reason in your decision.
Bright coloured suits can be too much all at once, and poorly chosen colours can clash with skin complexion. Experiment with caution.