Browsing Tag

Spring Racing

Fashion, What I Wore

What I Wore: Net-a-Porter spring launch

10th October, 2017

When it came time to celebrate the start of spring and spring racing season with Net-a-Porter in Melbourne, I wanted a look that was classic and understated. Enter this white Miu Miu dress. I really loved the simple v-neckline and most especially the bow which is always a sweet finishing touch. Also I don’t know about you but I always love a dress with pockets—it’s definitely an underrated feature! I wanted to maintain the simplicity of the outfit so opted for a monochrome colour palette by pairing the dress with my black Alaïa heels. It’s definitely a combination that I can see myself wearing again and becoming a go-to ensemble for events that require a look that’s unfussy and polished.

Credits: Dress, Miu Miu; Heels, Alaia

Fashion, Shop, What I Wore

Style masterclass: the perfect spring racing look

28th September, 2017

I’ve lost count of how many spring racing looks I’ve had to pull together over the years but if there’s one thing that’s a constant it’s that I’ve got a few key rules I stick to. It not only makes it easier to zero in on the perfect outfit it also ensures that I am able to adhere to the dress code for each race day event with minimal fuss. If you’re planning to head to the races this spring carnival you may fall into two camps: colour or muted tones such as black and white. I always like to mix it up so I’ve done both multiple times and either can be a standout option—it’s just a matter of keeping in mind a few crucial style and beauty elements…

How to do colour

If there’s one day to go all out with vibrant colour it’s Melbourne Cup day. It’s the one day of the spring racing calendar where it pays to be a bit daring and embrace bold hues such as pinks, yellows and purples. The more striking the better! When it comes to Oaks Day you’ll want to dial it down and embrace feminine hues—pretty pastels are always a winner or do florals if you want to go with a print.

The important thing to keep in mind when you’re doing colour is that your accessories should complement not compete with your outfit. Headwear is a must at all race day events and if you’re doing colour a great choice would be an elegant headband (such as what I have in my outfit below) or crown for something fashion forward. A straw boater is great for something a little more traditional. It’s better to go for a simple, classic headpiece as opposed to being too over the top—way too many embellishments can really make your outfit look dated. Invest in the best quality headwear you can as it can really be the finishing touch that elevates your look from so-so to sensational.

When it comes to handbags it’s best to carry a clutch or a small bag with a strap. Leave your big carryall at home! You can either go for an equally bold colour or dramatic features such as metallic accents or a textured finish.

Shop the look: Dress, Roland Mouret; HeelsAlaïa; Headpiece, Cornelia Webb

 

My Top Colour Picks
Dresses

Heels

 

Headwear

 

How to do monochrome

If there’s one day on which you must wear black or white (or both!) it’s Derby Day. I’ve often either opted for an all white look or an all black look as I find it’s more impactful as a top to toe ensemble. However the one thing both have in common is that in order for the outfit not to look flat there have to be textural elements and also a hint of contrasting colour with your accessories. In the case of my outfit below the ruching on the dress adds another dimension to the overall look, the same goes for my shoes which have a studded feature.

Monochrome accessories are often the easiest to work with as both colours are generally able to be worked back with a multitude of looks. Generally headbands work well when in a black and white colourway and are a great option for headwear as you’ll definitely be able to use it again. This season there are so many beautiful headband options with accents such as bows, flowers and pearls (such is the case with mine below) that you’re bound to find one to suit. You could also opt for a turban or a veiled headpiece for something a little more dramatic.

When it comes to your bag choice for a monochrome look keep it strictly black or white for Derby Day but on other days you may want to experiment with a little pop of colour or embellishment.

Shop my look: Dress, The Row; Heels, Alaïa; Headpiece, Gucci
My Top Monochrome Picks
Dresses

Heels

Headwear

 

How to do a winning beauty look

The most important thing to remember about a spring racing beauty look is that it’s a day event. So leave the ultra glam makeup for a big night out and instead opt for a fresh faced approach. I like to focus on having good skin on the day so ensure that I am sticking religiously to my skincare regimen and may even have a facial in the lead up to it to ensure my complexion is glowing. I find if you’ve got great skin as a base your makeup will sit well. Most of my routine involves at-home treatments, one in particular that I am loving is the Tata Harper Resurfacing Mask which helps to reduce pores and brighten dull skin. If I find my skin is looking a little puffy I always use Anne Semonin Eye Express Radiance Ice Cubes which helps to tighten skin and reduce puffiness (it’s perfect in the lead up to a big event).

With spring racing beauty I think it’s important to look polished yet still very natural. In this instance I went for a bold eye and a neutral lip (I always choose one feature to highlight, never both) which I found complemented both outfits. To ensure my makeup lasts all day I use Kevyn Aucoin The Primed Skin Developer which is a nourishing serum that acts as the ideal base for makeup. I will always use a highlighter and a subtle bronzer to achieve glowing skin and accentuate my features, and I find both work well in the daytime. Lashings of mascara are always a part of any dramatic eye look I do and at the moment I really like Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Major Volume Mascara in Noir—it gives a great falsh lash effect. As the final finishing touch I have a mani and pedi and either go for a dark polish to add a bit of punch to an outfit or a neutral shade for a subtle, understated effect.

Photography: Ashleigh Larden

Produced in collaboration with Net-a-Porter

 

Fashion, Lifestyle, Social

My 2016 Melbourne Cup Diary

3rd November, 2016

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Another year, another Melbourne Cup done!

This year, my day started early at our apartment in Melbourne. That is where we stay with my family so it was great to be able to spend Cup Day with them. With three kids and a baby present it was certainly busy but it was nice that my girls and my niece and nephew were all with us. I spent the morning getting ready with Mum and my sister-in-law Hoda and as always it was fun for us to all get our hair and makeup done together. My outfit was already sorted (it’s always something I like to lock in well in advance) so it was just a matter of putting the final finishing touches to it and I was ready to walk out the door.

We were lucky enough to be picked up by a Lexus car to take us to the Birdcage and when we got there headed straight for the Lexus Design Pavilion, which as per usual was on another level. It was definitely the place to be in the Birdcage and stood out as the most stylish and sophisticated marquee. The interiors were amazing and the architecture of the entire building was striking. Guests in the Pavilion included Jessica Gomes, Emma Freedman and Margaret Zhang so it was a great opportunity to catch up with a lot of people. We had an amazing lunch experience in there too which involved a three course tasting plate hosted by Ben Shewry, the head chef and owner of Attica restaurant in Melbourne. Needless to say, the food was delicious.

I was also on Lexus ambassador duties on the day so I had to juggle multiple media interviews including TV and radio spots which is always fun! However the most enjoyable part of the day is definitely being able to watch the race with my family, Mum especially. She had a runner in the race called Excess Knowledge so we watched the it with her in the owners’ stand. It’s always really nice being able to take in the race with her as I know all the hard work that goes into making it to the Melbourne Cup.

Cup Day is always a crazy busy day and it often passes by in a whirlwind of admiring all the beautiful outfits and headwear, toasting the day with champagne and race day duties for me but it’s something I look forward to every year. Counting down to 2017!

Getting dolled up with the help of my go-to makeup artist Blanka Dudas

Test driving my Gucci heels

Selfie for Instagram

Sophia hanging out in the apartment

Outfit details close up

All smiles with Mum and Hoda

Heading to the Birdcage with a little help from Lexus

Walking in with Luke

Catching up with Nadia Fairfax

Doing a radio interview

… and more interviews!

The media at the Lexus Design Pavilion

A peek at the interiors inside the Lexus Design Pavilion

So many beautiful finishes

Gorgeous blooms

Impressive set of wheels on display!

The outdoor area

We were truly spoilt in the food and drinks department

Guests at the bar

Cheers!

Jessica Gomes and Louise van de Vorst

Emma Freedman

Margaret Zhang

Enjoying the day with Luke

Photography: Adam Nalapraya and Karon Photography

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 

 

Fashion, What I Wore

What I Wore: Derby Day

31st October, 2016

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Derby Day is all about monochrome and last year having worn all white I decided to go for something completely different and opt for an all black look from head to toe.

I wanted to wear something that was sophisticated and sleek and the Balmain dress I wore perfectly fit the bill, with its high neck silhouette and intricate metal detailing. The midi length is a favourite of mine at the moment so the cut of the dress really caught my eye. One of my favourite Alaia heels perfectly complemented the look and headband by Hatmaker was just the piece to give the look a touch of drama.

Haven’t sorted our your Cup outfit yet? Check out my other favourite looks for Spring Racing here

 

 

SHOP THE LOOK

Fascinator: Hatmaker 

Dress: Balmain 

Heels: Alaïa

 

Photography: Danielle Castano.

Fashion

4 ways to accessorise your spring racing look

25th October, 2016

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When it comes to your spring racing look your accessories should definitely be a key consideration – don’t relegate it to a last minute choice as you dash out the door! Each of the key days in the racing calendar will allow you to explore some great accessories options and as bags are always one of the first things I think about, I’ve teamed up with The Daily Edited to showcase the right bag and accessories to help you pull together a wining race day look.

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The event: Derby Day

The monochrome dress code of Derby Day is generally really easy to follow when it comes to accessories because virtually every woman has a black clutch in her wardrobe. It’s like the LBD of the accessories world. If you want to opt for something different though a nice alternative is a cream bag.

As everyone will be wearing black and white it can become easy to get lost in the crowd so to stand out, attention to detail and beautiful craftsmanship with your accessories is important. One of the reasons I love the bags from The Daily Edited is because little touches like personalisation and being able to monogram your bag allows you to differentiate your accessories from the rest.

The thing with accessories is to make sure you’re comfortable and that you won’t constantly be fussing with them throughout the day. If you’re fine to put your clutch under your arm then great but otherwise opt for a shoulder strap so you can juggle champagne and a pen for writing down tips.

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The event: Melbourne Cup

For Melbourne Cup Day you can afford to go a little more bold with your look. You can inject a little bit of colour in your outfit but I think that if you’re going to opt for a striking headpiece try and tone it down a bit with the rest of your accessories because you have to have one standout item. I’ve always liked rich burgundy or a classic navy for a bag that will look classic but still make a statement. Also don’t forget about texture. For example something like a faux ostrich fabrication makes for a really nice and interesting alternative if you want to be a little more daring.

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The event: Oaks Day

Traditionally known as ladies’ day, this particular event is all about super feminine dressing. Think floral prints and really soft, pretty hues. With your accessories, go for a soft approach. I think gorgeous pastels are a great option when it comes to choosing a shade of handbag to bring with you on the day. It’s classic with just a touch of girliness so it’s the perfect finishing touch to your outfit on the day.

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The event: Stakes Day

Stakes Day is family day so don’t be afraid to have a bit of fun with colour. Also instead of a clutch why not try something different and opt for a shoulder bag instead? It makes for an effortless look and when you go for a bag in an interesting shade such as grey, it’s one way to ensure that you set yourself apart from other racegoers. As for the rest of your look don’t be afraid to be quite playful in your other accessories and try a unique headpiece or bold jewellery.

For more Spring Racing looks check out my other blog post 

Fashion, Shop

How to stand out from the crowd this race season

11th October, 2016

When it comes to racewear gone are the days of erring on the side of super conservative as opposed to looking fashion forward. These days you can easily get away with following the trends on the runway and applying a few race day rules to your look to keep it both occasion-appropriate and modern.

When it comes to being trackside, whether it’s Melbourne Cup or Derby Day I always tell people to think of racewear as being similar to an outfit you’d wear to a wedding or a really nice lunch with your family. It can be dressy but also keep in mind it’s a daytime event. This means nothing too short or with a plunging neckline, nothing too flashy like sequins or showing lots of skin. You can still go for a showstopper of a look but just remember to keep it tasteful.

Upping the cool factor on your look is easy, it’s just about knowing the right finishing touches to apply so you stand out from the crowd for all the right reasons.

Headwear

There are so many great options to choose from when it comes to headwear. Gone are the days where everything had to be matchy-matchy and your hat had to perfectly coordinate with your outfit.

If you don’t go to the races very often there are so many great pieces that can easily work for a party or a wedding so you can wear it afterwards and don’t end up spending a lot of money on just one amazing hat that you’ll rarely wear. Headbands are one easy and simple way to accessorise without going too over the top, and fascinators have always been a failsafe option. And if you do go down the hat route just remember when it comes to fabrication straw is for spring/summer and felt is for autumn/winter.

Fascinators

Headbands

Hats

 

Clutches

Prints, patterns, metallics and even a quirky cat face are all fair game when it comes to your arm candy for the day. When it comes to your clutch don’t be afraid to have a little fun and be slightly more daring with your look. If you’d rather keep your hands free to carry a glass of champagne or nibble on a canapé, just find a bag with a strap instead.

 

Rainbow Bright

I love wearing colour to the races as it’s so perfect for spring carnival. You can never go wrong with a bright hue or colourful floralsand it’s particularly appropriate for Oaks Day which has a more feminine dress code. Even with a more traditional print such as florals, you can always give it a more modern edge by going for an of the moment silhouette such as an off the shoulder look. Keep in mind too that when accessorising, headbands made from metal and jewels work particularly well with bright colours.

 

 

Sleek and chic

Wearing monochrome is a requirement on Derby Day but black and white is a failsafe option when it comes to achieving a contemporary look on any other day of the racing calendar. You could even go for an all black or all white look to give your look an eye-catching point of difference. This year I am loving dresses with a midi hemline and that particular length works well on a little black dress.

 

 

 

Jumpsuits and Suits

Last year I wore white Stella McCartney pants and a matching top to Derby Day so do think outside the box when it comes to your outfit. I particularly love jumpsuits which can look both on trend and classic and are a point of difference to the sea of dresses that will inevitably be there on race day. Even a beautiful tuxedo suit would make a great alternative.

 

 

Shoes

Vibrant colours, a heel with an interesting finish or strap detail are all great options for footwear. Just keep in mind that comfort is key as it’s a really long day and you’ll be on your feet most of the time. If you think that you may face a long trek to the car or to catch public transport be sure to pop a pair of flats into your clutch to change into later. Taking off your shoes is a big no-no.

 

 

Jewellery

Consider your entire look before adding jewellery. If you wear jewellery to the races you have to keep your headwear really simple. For example if you were wearing a sleek black hat, accessorising with jewellery can work really well but if you have a bejewelled headband I would keep accessories to a minimum. Statement earrings are having a moment and are a great way to dress up an outfit, alternatively a beautiful cuff or choker is also one way to inject the cool factor into your look.

NET-A-PORTER offers next day delivery to Sydney & Melbourne

Fashion

Get race day ready with Nerida Winter

6th October, 2016

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Over the years I’ve worn so many great pieces from milliner extraordinaire Nerida Winter to the races. You can always rely on one of her pieces to make a statement trackside. As spring racing season ramps up and Melbourne Cup is just around the corner I asked Nerida for some insider tips on top racewear trends to look out for plus how to pull together a perfect outfit.

How did you establish such a successful name as a milliner?

A lot of continuous hard work and dedication – I  think family upbringing has a lot to do with it too – I grew up with a creative father who taught me to think outside the square and that a spade was not necessarily a spade, it could be anything I wanted it to be. My mum and grandmother were always teaching me some form of arts and crafts, so it was a very colourful house!

What is the most important style advice you have ever received?

Follow your own look and not others .

Who inspires you?

Vivienne Westwood has inspired me for decades – I adore her fearlessness and her punk-like qualities.

What trends will we see for the racing season this year?

There is something for everyone this season.  I love the idea of mixing in some 70s glam and the 80s’ strong structural dresses could be a lot of fun to wear [to the races]. The modern take on tailoring is understated and elegant and I think the Victorian style dresses are incredible and I can’t wait to see how girls interpret those for the track.

What colours, textures and styles will we see for headwear this year?

My favourites are the pleats, lace, ruffles, florals – femme heaven! I’m also loving all the pinks, reds and there is still a bit of sparkle about. Monochrome looks are Derby Day essentials – from sculptural wide brimmed shapes to smaller florals.

What are your tips for putting together the perfect racing outfit?

Investing in good craftsmanship and quality of design will allow you to wear the pieces more than once. The power of tailoring is often underestimated.

What dressing mistakes should women avoid? 

Don’t let your headwear be an afterthought – it’s the piece that makes the day so special.

When dressing for the races, be careful not to overdo it – I like to focus on one piece, whether that is the hat, the dress, shoe or bag and build the outfit around that. Too many times you see the accessories competing with the outfit and it can look really forced and costume like.

It’s a long day on your feet, so wearing your shoes in a little first is wise (I learnt the hard way).

Do you have an all time favourite head piece? 

Absolutely – I have had a lifetime love of all things punk rock, so my feathered mohawks have been a staple in my wardrobe.

Fashion

My Melbourne Cup Carnival Diary

5th November, 2015

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I can’t believe Melbourne Cup is over for another year! I’ve been attending Derby Day and Melbourne Cup since I was a little girl (though I wasn’t allowed to go to Cup day until I finished school as it always fell on a school day) and it’s an annual family trip. These days with Sophia and my niece and nephew it’s a much bigger family affair. We now stay at mum and dad’s place so we can all be together and it’s always one of my favourite times of the year. That said, it’s a whirlwind few days and we’re always really busy in the lead up to it. This year I thought I’d give you a sneak peek at what I get up to over the few days at that is the Melbourne Cup carnival right from beginning to end…

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I always have my hat and outfit sorted before I fly to Melbourne but sometimes I don’t get to try the full outfit on until the night before or even the day of the race as I often don’t pick up my hat until the morning we leave. This is why I always bring a few bag and shoe options with me just in case. I pack light when I head to the races but I always have my media accreditation, some lip gloss, concealer and my phone.

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This was right before Derby Day and I was getting my hair and makeup done with Mum. My makeup artist Blanka Dudas also did my makeup for my wedding so it’s always really lovely to see her.

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Squeezing in some family quality time and hanging out with the kids. My sister-in-law Hoda was also in Melbourne with my niece Rosie and my nephew Will and Sophia always has the time of her life being with her cousins.

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When I arrived at the track it was straight into media interviews. I did an interview with a local radio station for Lexus and was interviewed by Melissa Hoyer from news.com.au.

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At the gorgeous Lexus Design Pavilion with fellow ambassadors Jessica Gomes and Margaret Zhang and outside with Dion Lee. Stay tuned for more shots of the interior – it was amazing.

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This was Melbourne Cup day. Blanka was doing my makeup again and this time around we had to make sure my bronze turban was going to stay in place the whole day. Thankfully it did!

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Luke and I arrived at the track and were greeted by photographers as we made our way through the crowd. It’s always a bit crazy during Melbourne Cup.

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At the Lexus Design Pavilion doing an interview with Channel 7. It’s like my home away from home during Melbourne Cup Carnival.

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I was honoured to be invited by Myer to judge Fashions on the Field this year. I was on a panel with a few big names in fashion media including Harper’s Bazaar’s Fashion Director Thelma McQuillan, publisher Jackie Frank and the Daily Telegraph’s Elle Halliwell. It’s always really fun and the designs are always amazing.
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And who else would I want to watch the race with than my mum? Here we are taking selfies before the race. Mum looked gorgeous as always. And with that, Melbourne Cup Carnival is over for another year. Bring on 2016!

PHOTOGRAPY: Adam Nalapraya

Fashion

Race day headwear tips from Nerida Winter

26th October, 2015

I have almost lost count of the number of gorgeous pieces I’ve worn by Nerida Winter. She’s one of my go-to milliners as she’s genius at being able to work current fashion trends into race day headwear. With Melbourne Cup day fast approaching, I asked Nerida to share some of her dos and don’ts for race day along with some of the big trends to look out for.

The top trends

“Coco Chanel’s fave hat is having a moment this season. Boaters are easy to wear, look effortless and are as fabulous on the street as they are at the track.”

“From feathered edgy crowns to French lace versions, we have made the ultimate princess accessory track-worthy.”

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Zatanna silk satin floral headband, $295

“Feminine 70s floral garlands and halos will give your frock a new mood.”

The key colours

“Monochrome is huge and perfect for Derby Day elegance. A multitude of pinks and reds are Cup day essentials and metallics, nudes and blush pinks are Hollywood heroine-worthy and Oaks Day appropriate.”

Nerida’s dos and don’ts

  • When it comes to headwear always invest in the best quality/craftsmanship you can. If you want longevity and versatility you can’t go wrong with something in black.
  • It’s important to always choose a shape you feel good in regardless of fads. This season our onyx Nadia boater will have you looking amazing for many race days to come.
  • As far as spring racing no-nos go fascinators are dead – especially the DIY type . Overworked styles with too many tricks will make you look very dated, as will a matchy-matchy approach.
  • Embrace headwear and try more styles outside of your comfort zone. Your accessories should never be an afterthought as they are the key to setting you apart from the crowd.

 

Shop Nerida’s latest looks:

Nadia boater in Desert with onyx ribbon, $175; Zatanna silk satin floral headband, $295; Starfire headpiece, $395; The Nadia boater, $175; The Coveteur, $295; The Elektra, $395.