If you are already thinking about what to wear for the next Kentucky Derby, you've come to the right place. The Kentucky Derby is known as the one of the world's most fashionable venues. This is no recent phenomenon. In the 1870s, Colonel Meriwether Lewis Clark Jr., the founder of the Kentucky Derby, would change the world's perception of horse racing. Once considered a place unfit for women and children, with the help of his wife, Clark marketed his new racetrack as a place for members of high society.
From that point on, the Kentucky Derby became an event for the upper class, attracting the media and celebrities. Women wore highly coordinated hats, bags, dresses, shoes, and parasols. However, it wasn't until the 1960s that women's hats became much larger and colorful. Over the years, that trend waxed and waned, that is until the year of Prince William and Kate Middleton's royal wedding, popularizing spectacular hats once again.
Kentucky Derby Style
Today's Kentucky Derby style allows you to embrace your inner Southern belle with large, decorative hats, flowing dresses, floral prints, and classic and elegant accessories. This is your chance to throw practicality out the window and experiment with over-the-top, glamorous looks. You have a variety of options when it comes to hats. Choose the one that makes you feel the most fabulous! If you're looking for inspiration, look to stars like Angela Bassett, Krysten Ritter, Lauren Conrad, and Brely Evans.
What to Wear
A hat is a necessary element. Whether you prefer something more understated and comfortable or something more bright and grandiose, there are many different types of hats to choose from. When considering fit, find something that once it graces your head, it no longer needs to be adjusted. For a headpiece, you may need to fasten it down with some bobby pins. Hats are elegant choices that are truly pieces of art used to express your personal style. Fascinators, fedoras, cloches, floppy bohemian and pillbox hats are also great options.
The weather can be very unpredictable so consider bringing layers. You can also let your hat be your guide when it comes to picking the perfect dress. This could be anything from a simple maxi dress to a sophisticated suit.
Since your hat is likely to be the main attraction, keep your jewelry simple and classic. The Kentucky Derby is a great occasion to wear your pearls or diamond stud earrings.
While you will want to wear striking heels to go along with the rest of your stunning fashion, consider bringing an extra pair of flats.
The Bottom Line
Most importantly, be sure to incorporate a lot of color. If your guy is unsure of what to wear, that same rule can be applied for his dress shirt or bow tie. Some men wear hats to the Kentucky Derby as well, but hats are generally more of a women's trend.