Dressing for the races is an interesting one, in the sense that so many people believe when they walk through the gates, they’ve arrived as the most stylish gent at the event…Unfortunately, more often than not, those with an obnoxious swagger are dressed in a car crash of an outfit, which usually includes a shiny suit, super-skinny tie and an untucked shirt.
When attending the races, there are no rules set-in-stone surrounding what you have to wear, although if you’re in one of the higher tiered areas of the course, a jacket and tie is usually required. It means you have a certain amount of freedom to express yourself and your sense of style, yet I would advise you reign it in and don’t allow yourself to get too carried away.
So, how do you make sure you get this right?
Don’t Fall at the First
It’s safe to say you see some rather horrendous patterns being worn in the crowds and I would honestly say I’d rather don jockey colours than a burgundy suit with a white windowpane check.
Instead of trying to make a real statement with your suit, go for something classic, and let your accessories do the talking. Something along the lines of a deep navy or charcoal grey is a great option, and this Limehaus Grey Texture Suit from Suit Direct would brilliantly suffice.
However, please remember that this suit has been made generically, to fit a range of body types, so please don’t forget to get it tailored, as there’s nothing more naff looking than a chap wearing a suit that doesn’t fit him.
Best Foot Forward
Whether you’re attending the races via an exclusive invite or simply for a jolly with your fellow chaps, it’s important to have your shoe game on point – this is an area where many blokes tend to fall off the horse, as they put all their time into ‘nailing’ their tailoring and then just pair the suit with any old shoes.
Now, the likelihood is, you’re going to want to get in on the action and venture down to the railings to get a closer look at the horses. Thus, I’d advise something robust and sturdy but without sacrificing style of course.
You can never go wrong with a pair of Oxfords; they’re both a fantastic accompaniment with sartorial wear and extremely steady under foot – the ultimate shoe for the races.
One final point, I would usually go with brown – it’s less corporate and pairs wonderfully with either of the suits I talked about above.
If you are one of the lucky ones who has received an invite into hospitality, you’ll likely be required to wear a tie. If you’ve taken my advice and been quite reserved with your choice of suit, you have a little creative freedom to showcase your personality. One thing I would say chaps is don’t thi9nk just because you aren’t in hospitality, you shouldn’t dress for the occasion – I would always encourage a tie and pocket square combination at the races.
But please, I beg of you don’t back a comical, patterned tie that has multiple Donald Ducks on it; It’s nothing more than sartorial child’s play. Oh, and another thing, try to subtly match your tie and pocket square, through colour tones, instead of getting an identical pairing – I just feel this appears a little tacky and a lack of imagination.
So there you have it – How to dress for the races. The suit provides the essential blueprints for your look and Suit Direct have a number of smashing options.