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Stylish Melbourne Cup hats and headpieces have been a major feature of Melbourne Cup Day for decades. Spectators, punters and thousands of other racing enthusiasts are drawn to the scenic Flemington racecourse for this premier event, donning their very best outfits for a truly excellent day of racing and entertainment.

There is little doubt that the pace and excitement of the races, the power and agility of the turf champions and the allure of the carnival atmosphere are all highlights of any race day, however threatening to steal the show is the fashion. The crowds create a colourful display of designer suits, ties and frocks, but on the tip of every fashionista’s tongue are the Melbourne Cup hats on top of the ladies’ heads!

Christine’s Millinery

Hats and Headdress by design for all Events

Phone: 0430 197 600
Email: [email protected]

Suzanne O’Brien

Designer of Hats & Headpieces

Location: Clontarf, NSW
Mobile: 0411 171 135
Email: [email protected]

Hats are an essential accessory for any race wear attire, providing the wearer with shade and sophistication. Recent years have seen an influx of fabulous Melbourne Cup fascinators paraded across the field. However, Melbourne Cup hats will always hold a classic appeal.

Tips for Wearing Melbourne Cup Hats

It takes grace and elegance to successfully wear some of the amazing sculptured creations milliners design for today’s races, and how a lady wears her hat is just as important as the piece itself! Most significant is to select a hat you feel comfortable in. A ridiculously large and adorned Melbourne Cup hat can be heavy and hard to wear, so select a piece crafted from light fibres and materials to ensure you look and feel your best and can relax and enjoy the races. However, if you are an “old hat” at wearing extravagant race day head pieces, or really feel like making a statement of flamboyancy and fun, then the Melbourne Cup is the time to do it. If you can pull it off go for it!

For winter and autumn racing carnivals, wool and felt based hats are perfect. Races held during the cooler months call for darker coloured hats made from heavier fabrics. For the Victorian Spring Racing Carnival and the Melbourne Cup, however, natural fibres like sinnamay and straw form a softer spring look, and brighter colours are the way to go.

Designs of Melbourne Cup Hats

Traditionally, Melbourne Cup hats have been extravagantly decorated pieces, sporting feathers, beads, jewels and other unique embellishments. But a recent trend has seen a more minimalistic ornamentation of race day hats, including the cute miniature top-hats for the ladies. Smaller head pieces can be enhanced by the position you wear them on your head. A hat perched at a quirky angle on the side of your head can look very chic. Classic glamour is making a resurgence in hat design, as pillbox style hats trimmed with eye-covering netting and vintage adornments are sweeping the racing carnivals.

Also, romantic designs beautified with feathers and flowers are being seen less as the more abstract and structural designs are making their way onto the field. Big bows, brooches and glittering gemstones are more popular than ever on race day hats.

Milliners and Designers of Melbourne Cup Hats

Couture hats are often expensive, but no expense should be spared for the nation’s most illustrious race! The exquisite designs, artistic flare, vintage appeal and unique statements of a couture hat far outweigh the cost. A terrific range of milliners are based in Melbourne and are always prepared to go the extra mile to create a flattering and exclusive hat for your race day event. Try Christine’s Millinery, Rebecca Share Milliner, Torb and Reiner Millinery, Hats From Oz, Paris Kyne Master Milliner, Louise Macdonald Milliner, or Julie Fleming.

So before you head out the door to Flemington, make sure you finish off your look with a distinctive and defining Melbourne Cup hat that will be sure to turn heads!

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