4 Top Millinery Trends to Try This Racing Season

Spring Racing hats and millinery

No race-day look is complete without the right hat or fascinator. These are the four styles to embrace this season.

From an understated bow to the bigger-is-better wide-brimmed hat, the best spring racing millinery runs the full gamut of styles this season. The good news: it’s never been easier to find exactly the right hat, headband or fascinator to elevate your look. To help pinpoint the right piece, we’ve asked the milliners behind some of our top brands about their favourite trends and best advice for how to wear them.

Trend 1: Bigger is better

Spring Racing hats and millinery

From left: Sylvy Earl white hat (in store only); Gregory Ladner black hat (in store only); Fiona Powell red hat (in store only); Sylvy Earl natural hat with stripe; Sarah J Curtis black hat (in store only)

One of the biggest accessories trends for 2018, the wide-brimmed hat will be a staple for the racing season and beyond. With brims spanning up to one metre, this is a style that’s guaranteed to make an impact, so milliner Gregory Ladner recommends making it the focal point of your look.

“Wide-brimmed hats work well with tailored pant suits, rather than overly feminine dresses, and with minimal jewellery and accessories,” he says. “The hat can be slightly tilted to one side – generally to the right – but either side is okay. Wear it with simple slicked back hair, a bold lip and minimal eye makeup.”

Jill Humphries, founder of Jill & Jack Millinery, also cautions that certain practical considerations need to be made when wearing a wide-brimmed hat.

Look to the weather – windy days doesn’t like big brims, yet a sunny day loves them!

Trend 2: Embellished details

Spring Racing hats and millinery

From left: Ford Millinery gold pearl headband (in store only); Ford Millinery blue turban (in store only); Morgan & Taylor gem headband; Kitte silver headband; Mimco headband (in store only)

A bejewelled headband or twinkling turban is the crowning glory to any race-day look. “You can’t really go wrong with a beautiful embellished headband,” agrees Anne-Marie Bodal, head of design at Mimco.

They add a touch of femininity to any ensemble and with numerous styles available, there’s sure to be a piece to suit any woman’s style.

These are intricate pieces punctuated by glittering crystals, 3D flowers, and gemstones real and faux. With so much detail in every headpiece, Bodal recommends keeping the matching beauty look simple. “Opt for either a sleek low bun or romantic soft waves for hair. Pair with a fresh, dewy makeup look with a soft pink lip, or add a touch of drama with a bold pink or tangerine hue.”

Trend 3: Tied up in a bow

Spring Racing hats and millinery

From left: Olga Berg coral bow (in store only); Jill & Jack Millinery bow with star; d.e Millinery blush pink bow; Morgan & Taylor hot pink bow (in store only); Sylvy Earl black embellished bow (in store only)

For a more understated approach to millinery, a pretty satin or textured ribbon adds a touch of feminine frippery, without being too over the top. Race-day fixtures love this style for its easy versatility – “it makes a stunning statement worn with a modern and edgy suit, or can be kept soft and flowing with a beautiful dress,” says Danica Louise Erard, owner and designer at d.e Millinery.

Erard recommends fastening a bow to the top of a sleek ponytail, or pinning it to a headband.

Either way, the drama is in the bow. It allows you to stand out beautifully and with little effort.

Trend 4: The not-so-traditional boater

Spring Racing hats and millinery

From left: Morgan & Taylor pearl-trimmed boater; Jill & Jack Millinery polkadot boater (in store only); Jill & Jack Millinery black boater; Sarah J Curtis blue boater; Morgan & Taylor boater with netting (in store only)

I like a boater worn with simple drop-style earrings, as this creates a soft, pretty longline silhouette against the hat and neck line.

“Boaters can be worn with everything,” says milliner Sarah J Curtis. “They create a real mood to any outfit.”

This racing season, the traditional boater style has been given a modern update with unexpected colours, netting overlays or embellished details. For Jill Humphries from Jill & Jack Millinery, however, they are best worn with at least a nod to tradition. “The boater is made to sit on the right side of your face. Usually I place it about an inch above the eyebrow and then tilt it gently until I have matched the wearer’s jawline.”

See our spring racing millinery edit