The fashion rebels were out in full force at Flemington’s Oaks Day on Thursday, shirking the long-held dress code of pastels and feminine silhouettes for something far more interesting – and riskier.
The A-list mixed things up on Ladies’ Day with structured silhouettes, minis, a sea of bare shoulders, bold colours – nobody can bear to be parted from red and pink – and flat shoes.
The insider tip for Stakes Day? Time to hang up the jewelled headband. When everyone’s doing it, it’s done.
Moana Hope and Isabella Carlstrom: “If you can’t already tell, I’m a suit girl,” posted the AFLW player (right, with her model girlfriend) who gussied up a cropped, relaxed Joe Black suit with pastel brogues and Jason Grech shirt with fabulously-oversized pussycat bow. Scoreboard.
The Brownless girls: The mother/daughters trio went big on the ruffles, bare shoulders and ubiquitous crowns, with Ruby boldly ignoring the pastel dress code and Lucy pulling her look together with a corset. Fresh, fun and not too formal.
Frances Abbott: The bodybuilder and former PM’s daughter went minimal on the accessories (apart from the professional hazard of phantom bikini top line) but packed a punch with balloon sleeves for a lunch at Myer celebrating inspiring Australian women. Boom.
Jessie Murphy: With just a couple of weeks left to dress her baby bump, the AFL wife pulled out all stops: towering gold Danica Erard headpiece, bodycon Cappellazzo Couture dress and sky-high Tony Bianco heels. Hopefully with a folding chair stashed somewhere.
Pettifleur Berenger: “It’s a fabulous day,” said the Desperate Housewives of Melbourne rebel, who totally trampled fluffy and feminine in structural Dior and Versace with an Ava Jaxon headpiece.
Bec Hewitt: “It’s great to take off my baseball cap and get dressed up,” said the wife of tennis great Lleyton, who hit the style brief with her Sass & Bide dress and shoes, but went back the future with her fascinator.
Emma Hawkins: “Last day before I retire back to farm life,” said the WAG, who looked every inch the city girl in a Vivienne Westwood mini with Windsor Smith shoes (“We updated the shoes by putting ribbons around the straps”) and Sylvy Earl individual floral headpieces.
Brooke Hogan: After, as you do, catching a chopper to Flemington, the model – flouting unofficial ‘no strapless’ rules – hit the Lavazza marquee in custom Forever New dress, Gianvito Rossi pumps and Melissa Jackson hat.
Daria Gavrilova: The tennis player does her best work in a short dress, and stuck to what she knows in a skater look with crown and sandals.
Robyn Lawley: And this is how you do it: the model outbloomed a wall of roses (not easy) in a Con Ilio dress and Kerrie Stanley turban. “Feeling like a million dollars,” said Lawley on Instagram, thanking Ilio for, “proving that dresses can be made to fit a woman’s body, not forcing a woman’s body to fit a dress”.
Fifi Box: “Thanks for dragging me off the couch!” the radio star told her host, Myer, as she soaked up the fun in a blush and silver dress which combined a lot of elements all at once.
Daisy Pearce: The AFLW player broke away from the pack, anchoring her floaty handkerchief hem dress with quite cool sensible flats.
Kate Ceberano: To perform at Sensis, the singer opted for lace. Lots of lace. With accents of everyone’s current favourite colour, pink.
Havana Brown: Looking way more business than party, the DJ went all military on us in ferocious Balmain and perhaps the first pair of socks sported by a woman on Oaks Day, ever. Gucci bag, see you next winter.
Lauren Phillips: The Postcards host was yet another acolyte of the jewelled turban (Viktoria Novak), teamed with embellished Bronx and Banco dress and Tony Bianco sandals. And an “I’m rapt” smile.
Jennifer Hawkins: “Relaxing morning with my girls,” said the Myer ambassador, who kept things sleek in slit-skirted, floor length Roland Mouret with Ezara/J lace headband and Oscar de la Renta earrings.
Priscilla Presley: As special guest of Kennedy, the actress and ex-wife of Elvis was a little bit My Fair Lady (hat), a little bit couture fishing net (dress), a little bit of 1970s flight attendant (court shoes) and a lot stone cold fox.
Rachael Finch: Wearing her first fringe “since I was 14”, the Myer ambassador meshed sophistication and boho in a We Are Kindred Dress and simple black headband.
Steph Claire Smith: In an actual day dress (hallelujah) the blogger and model was breezy perfection in Realisation Par with wicker bag, hair scarf and retro sunglasses. Take another look at this one, everybody. Race day perfection.
Nadia Bartel: “I always look serious in photos but I’m having so much fun,” the fashionista and blogger (in Atoir dress, Ezara/J shoes and Gedebe bag) told The New Daily. Her current obsession? “Loving all red this year.”
Rebecca Harding: The Fashions on the Field ambassador cut things short in a We Are Kindred dress with divinely impractical sleeves.