I never understood why Derby Day was considered the day for punting purists until now. Despite the tempestuous weather warnings, including this ominous caution from my mother “Why you not wear a coat? You going to watch a horse? You going to catch a cold!” (she doesn’t actually talk like that, but the direct Chinese translation is pretty close), I, along with the rest of Melbourne, flocked to the Flemington racecourse to watch horses, snap clothes horses, and to tempt fate with the elements.
Dozens of fabulous fillies grace the Birdcage, but Kate Waterhouse is my favourite. How can you say no to a strapless dress with pockets? This girl has style and horse racing in her DNA. Beaming with hubby Luke Ricketson, can you believe she gave birth only 5 months ago?
My hat was ‘gone with the wind’ half a dozen times thanks to the gusty gales. Wish I’d met Stephanie earlier so I could have taken a leaf out of her book: never wear a hat on a windy day without the help of grosgrain ribbons. Utterly stunning, her outfit was perfect for the German theme of the Emirates marquee this year.
So there you have it: my whirlwind Derby Day experience. It was my first time at the monochrome-supporting day, and the fashion did not disappoint. The majority obeyed race style rules, except Margherita Missoni. She broke tradition by wearing colours and flowers in her head. But then again, she is an heiress to the Missoni empire. So she can do anything.
I chose this wide-brimmed hat because I figured it could double as an umbrella, but the wind frowned upon my choice of head wear, and blew it away at every opportunity.
And my mother dearest? Did her prediction about her daughter catching a cold come true? Oh you bet!