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Melbourne Cup Carnival

Fashion, Fashion & Beauty, What I Wore

What I Wore: 2019 Stakes Day

9th November, 2019

Out of all the race days during the Melbourne Cup Carnival, Stakes Day is the most relaxed in terms of dress codes. It’s a family friendly event, with no formal dress code, so you can afford to go for something that’s slightly more casual. The only non-negotiable is that it you still look polished and elegant. It’s one of my favourite days as I’m also able to attend with Luke and the girls which always makes the day really fun.

I decided on a Dior maxi dress with earthy/navy tones for the event as I felt it worked perfectly with the attire this particular race day required. I loved the pattern on the dress and the flared 50s style skirt. The neckline featured a deep V-neck which gives the dress just a little edge. With such a voluminous shape, it was important that the dress have a little cinched in element so it didn’t look like it was swamping me, so I decided on a waist belt worn over the top. It gave me a flattering nipped in silhouette and helped give the dress a little more structure. Plus I love the shape of the belt, which features the iconic saddle bag shape of the brand.

Working with a mix of shades can make accessorising tricky but in the end I felt white would work best to complement the colour palette of the dress. I ended up going for a Dior wide brimmed straw hat, which looks relaxed but still polished and finished it with white Dior pointed toe heels with ankle straps. It was a way of doing accessories in a pared back way, but in a colour that would still allow it to pop against the dress. The ideal balance of making a statement without being overwhelming.

Credits: Dress, Christian Dior; Belt, Christian Dior; Shoes, Christian Dior; Hat

Fashion, Fashion & Beauty

What it’s really like to work with a stylist

7th November, 2019
Working with a stylist during spring racing has allowed to experiment with new looks

I have always styled my racing looks and really enjoy doing it but it’s also labour intensive. I have to source multiple options for every race day, and that includes my outfit, shoes, jewellery, and headwear. This year, I not only had several race days to attend but I had presenting commitments with 7 Racing that saw me having to also style outfits for those occasions, and not only that I had to ensure that my outfit was able to work on camera and co-ordinated with the other presenters. That’s a lot of outfits! So I enlisted the help of stylist Jess Pecoraro to make it happen.

Jess is the go-to fashion and celeb stylist for the likes of Jesinta Franklin and Gemma Ward and Delta Goodrem. She’s got a great eye and knows what I like and gets my style which is critical when you’re working with a stylist. We’ll often start by taking a look at the events I have coming up and what each look requires. For example there are strict dress codes for big race days like Derby Day and Melbourne Cup which we need to adhere to, and if I’ve got TV commitments I need to ensure that what I’m wearing works well on screen as well as the other presenters I’m working with. Additionally I work with a few key brands during spring racing so it’s important that we factor them into the styling process. It’s a big process and there are so many considerations to be made that it’s great to have someone to look after it all as it makes everything a little less hectic.

I’m quite open to trying new looks and Jess pulled together a number of different outfits for me to try. We did a few fittings at home to see what would work and the accessories to match. This can become quite a lengthy process as we experiment with different options to lock in the final outfit, all the while making sure that I’m keeping to dress codes and incorporating certain brands. I’m always able to direct the outfits where I want them to go but Jess is able to put forward combinations and suggestions of how everything could work together which is great as often it can be hard to have a vision for every outfit. That’s the great thing about working with a stylist.

I often get asked why I work with stylists and one of the reasons is that it’s great to be able to collaborate with someone else and get a fresh opinion or point of view on fashion. I know what I like but sometimes I might miss something that would look great, that someone else from the outside looking in might see. And being able to push boundaries and try something new is what fashion is all about.

Fashion, What I Wore

What I Wore: 2019 Oaks Day

7th November, 2019

Oaks Day is traditionally ladies’ day so the dress code is all about soft feminine looks. It’s the perfect time to embrace my girly side, so I always have a lot of fun with my outfit on the day, favouring pretty prints and accessories.

I saw this Prada dress and thought it was perfect for the occasion. The accordion pleat skirt and the frilled bib detail is classic and polished, but the playful lip print gives it a more modern feel. It’s always fun to work a print into a race day look and I tend to gravitate towards those that are fun and have a vibrant energy.

It’s always great to designate a focal point to any outfit and in this instance it was definitely the dress. Pink and black is always a fun colour combination so I decided to accentuate the touches of pink on the dress with dark accessories. Of course, I couldn’t go past the black textured Maticevski Prometheus clutch with urchin-like beaded detail—it added a fashion forward element to my look and I love accessories that are unique looking. Black heels with knotted detail and an oversized bow worked well with the rest of my outfit. But it’s always fun to incorporate some truly beautiful jewellery into any race day look and the Chaumet bracelets I was wearing added a luxe touch to my ensemble.

Photography by Ashleigh Larden

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Credit: Dress, Prada (Net-A-Porter); Shoes, Mode Collective; Bag, Maticevski; Hair clip, Avenue; Jewellery, Chaumet

Fashion, What I Wore

What I Wore: 2019 Melbourne Cup

5th November, 2019

It’s without a doubt one of my fave events to dress for and this year’s Melbourne Cup I wanted to go for a look that was pretty and feminine. Enter this pastel pink Macgraw dress. I wanted to wear a local designer this year and this frock definitely fit the brief. What I loved about this dress was that the overall design is pared back but elevated by the finishing touches. The diamante flower buttons gave it a touch of playfulness whilst injecting a bit of bling. Meanwhile the blouson sleeve and A-line skirt offer up some on trend elements.

The vibe of the dress demanded interesting accessories. Headwear is so important on Cup day and this Sylvy Earl straw boater in a similar shade to the dress provided the ideal complementary piece. It was also great to be able to incorporate a little texture. The feathered bag was a lot of fun and worked well with the pretty vibe of my ensemble. Lace up heels provided a slightly little grittier element. The final finishing touch was the selection of beautiful Chaumet jewels I was wearing. The gorgeous rings really lifted my entire outfit whilst adding a luxe touch that was just made for Cup day.

Credits: Dress, Macgraw; Bag, Olga Berg; Shoes, Tony Bianco; Hat, Sylvy Earl, Jewellery, Chaumet.

Photography by Ashleigh Larden

Fashion, Fashion & Beauty

What I Wore: 2019 Derby Day

2nd November, 2019

Derby Day is always one of the chicest race days on the spring racing calendar because of its monochrome colour palette. Working with black and white is always guaranteed to look stylish and it’s one of my favourite events to dress for. This year I centred everything around this knitted Christopher Kane dress. What initially drew me to it was its interesting shape. I loved its fitted style and the tiered hem, and the high neckline with long neck tie feature at the back gives the dress focal points from the front and the back. And I can’t go past glam embellishments such as the oversized crystal buttons.

I wanted to add some statement pieces to this look as I find a black dress is given a little extra depth when paired with accessories that pop. In keeping with the glamorous feel, I worked the look back with a black and diamante custom headpiece by Viktoria Novak. Headbands are such a huge trend right now and such an easy option when you want headwear that’s simple yet stylish. Also I opted for a Jimmy Choo clutch with a similar feel, the statement bow edged with diamantes to help tie the look together. And Giuseppe Zanotti embellished heels were the perfect finishing touch to this look.

Photography: Ashleigh Larden

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Credits: Dress, Christopher Kane; Head-piece, Custom Viktoria Novak; Bag, Jimmy Choo; Shoes, Giuseppe Zanotti.

This post was produced in collaboration with Net-a-Porter

Fashion, What I Wore

A touch of Paris at the races

14th November, 2018

Like most women I’ve always had a huge appreciation for beautiful jewellery. I’ve always admired the craftsmanship that goes into each piece and also the story that each design tells. So I was thrilled to be able to work with French jewellery house Chaumet for the Melbourne Cup Carnival. Founded in 1780, it quickly became the official jeweller for Empress Josephine. Its collections today are still handcrafted in Paris’ place Vendôme, with each piece having a sophisticated and timeless Parisian sensibility.

I wore Chaumet pieces for each of my looks for the key spring racing days and was spoilt for choice with Chaumet’s three unique universes to choose from. Each universe — Josephine, Liens and Jardins is a unique collection with a distinct aesthetic and personality. The Josephine universe echoes the history of the brand, with elegant pieces that are designed to make a statement. Jardins has a whimsical feel, incorporating a slightly more playful nature whilst Liens is about sentimental pieces that are designed to make special moments in life.

I am the first to admit I had a ball picking out pieces but without a doubt the one I was most excited about was wearing the Josephine Aigrette Imperiale tiara at Derby Day. Chaumet is known as the house of the tiara, having created over 2000 tiaras since its inception, so I was in expert hands. The first time I tried it on I definitely had my very own princess moment. Images don’t do the tiara justice — it really was exquisite. Made of 18-carat white gold and dotted with 212 brilliant cut diamonds, it added a touch of sparkle to my monochrome look and was a definite conversation piece throughout the day.

For Melbourne Cup, Oaks Day and Stakes Day I was able to wear a few pieces from the various collections, and each definitely gave my outfits a special touch. What I liked most was that each design was unique and had a standout element whether it be an interesting shape or a gorgeous stone and all elevated my looks — as only a striking piece of jewellery can.

If you want to get up close and personal with these beautiful pieces you can head to Chaumet’s boutiques in Westfield Sydney and Chadstone Shopping Centre

Having a princess moment at Derby Day in the Josephine tiara

The incredible Josephine tiara in detail

 

Wearing the Hortensia Eden earrings and ring at Melbourne Cup

Adding a bit of sparkle to my look with the Jeux de Liens bracelets

Understated elegance at Oaks Day wearing the Josephine Aigrette earrings and rings

The insanely beautiful Josephine Aigrette ring and wedding band (if you’re getting married seriously consider it)

Elevating my look with a few Chaumet pieces at Stakes Day

This post was produced in collaboration with Chaumet

Fashion, What I Wore

What I Wore: 2018 Stakes Day

10th November, 2018

Of all the days in the Melbourne Cup Carnival, Stakes Day is the most relaxed so I wanted to change things up a bit and veer away from dress territory. I couldn’t resist these pastel yellow pants and dramatic top by Jacquemus. The colour is fun and vibrant — perfect for a spring racing event. The top with its asymmetric silhouette and statement tie also adds a touch of drama to the look.

I was immediately sold when I saw these Ferragamo heels, most especially the gold column heel which adds a glamorous detail to such an understated design. In keeping with the trend for all things raffia, I opted for this Miu Miu clutch which has a light, summery feel and provided the perfect complementary accessory to the suit.

With such a strong outfit, I wanted to add some slightly softer pieces when it came to my jewellery. The pendant and bracelet from Chaumet features an adorable bow design, whilst the ring (which I also wore to Melbourne Cup) features a sweet floral design, all pieces that I think add a distinctly feminine, yet still understated feel to my look. To top off my look I went for a simple black straw hat by Nerida Winter—a sleek design that was the perfect finishing touch.

Credits: Pants & Top, Jacquemus; Bag, Miu Miu; Shoes (in black), Ferragamo; Headpiece, Nerida Winter; Jewellery, Chaumet

Photography: Dan Castano

This post was produced in collaboration with Net-a-Porter

Fashion, What I Wore

What I Wore: 2018 Oaks Day

8th November, 2018

For the most feminine of dress codes it was a no-brainer: I had to wear pink. Oaks Day is ladies’ day which means lots of soft shades and florals and a ladylike silhouette. Whilst the midi length is great for the races the bubblegum pink shade adds a touch of fun and a vibrancy that makes this look stand out. I also love the satin which has a fluidity to it that gives it a glamorous feel. Additionally I was drawn to the strong shoulders which are a little 80s (in a good way!) which gives the the dress a touch of attitude.

I wanted to avoid going too girly with this particular look so I needed a shoe that had a bit more edge. These Tabitha Simmons leopard print heels were an obvious choice — they’re playful and fun with a touch of sexiness. When it came to my bag I wanted to go for something a little more structured and couldn’t pass up the new vertical clutch from The Daily Edited. It has an optional strap which I always really like for racing events as it gives me the option to go hands free if I need to and I’m the first to admit that I have a soft spot for anything personalised.

As for the final finishing touches I went with some gorgeous pieces from jeweller Chaumet – a beautiful ring and earrings which completed my look. Wearing such a bold colour I wanted to keep my headwear quite simple and once again opted for a Nerida Winter piece, this time around a simple, understated number incorporating elegant pink netting with subtle black accents. It was the ideal ladylike look with a modern edge throughout.

Credits: Dress, Dolce & Gabbana; Shoes, Tabitha Simmons (old season); Bag, The Daily Edited; Jewellery, Chaumet; Headpiece, Nerida Winter

Photography: Sophia Athas

This post was produced in collaboration with Net-a-Porter

Fashion, What I Wore

What I Wore: 2016 Melbourne Cup

1st November, 2016

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When it comes to attire for the Melbourne Cup it’s all about going bold. And this year, I decided to embrace colour and opted for this beautiful pink and forest green dress by Gucci. The sweet ruffles on the sleeves give the dress an air of playfulness which really works for today and whilst the unexpected colour combination is striking it’s the pearl detailing on the back and front that really caught my eye – it’s so unbelievable in person that it definitely cemented the dress as THE dress for Cup Day.

Pink and green can be a little tricky when it comes to shoe options however it was Gucci to the rescue again. The gold heels dotted with pearls that I spotted in their latest collection perfectly offset the hues in my dress. With such a bold look, I wanted to strike the right balance between making a statement with my headwear whilst not overpowering the dress and shoes. The flower crown by Hatmaker was just on the right side of understated to really complement my overall look. The gems throughout the crown also subtly picked up some of the colours in my dress and really helped highlight the pink and green.

I hope you’re having a great Melbourne Cup day!

Shop more of my favourite racing looks

Credits: Dress, Gucci; Crown, Hatmaker; Heels, Gucci (sandal version)

Photography: Danielle Castano and Adam Nalapraya