Aintree and Ascot may be the most famous, but there are a host of equally fun and fabulous Races happening all around the country, each with their own personality and style. A great excuse to dress up and enjoy the British weather, here are Team LBD’s guide on where to go, and what to wear.
When: 17th June – 21st June; Ascot Ladies Day 19th June
Where: In Berkshire
What: The one and only racing event where you’re guaranteed to be socialising with the Queen, Ascot is the royal event to be seen at. For southern socialites this is an obligatory event to get dressed up and flaunt your most fashionable ensemble.
The dress code: Smart, sophisticated and elegant
What to wear: If you thought the race day fashion police were fictional then think again, because at Ascot if your hem is too high or too much flesh is on show, you will be sent away or given a pashmina to cover yourself up! Think structured styles, pencil dresses, florals, bold colours and an outfit Mary Poppins might approve – oh, and it really is de rigueur to wear a hat. Check out the dress code rules here.
Tipple of choice: Would it be anything other than Champagne at Royal Ascot?
Get the Look: Honor Gold Pippa Dress in Pink £69.99, Aftershock London Julita Floral Design High Heels in Grey £79, Aftershock London Millie Embellished Clutch in Gold £89, Krystal London Tey Earrings £40
When: 29th July – 2nd August; Ladies Day 31st July
Where: Based near Chichester in West Sussex
What: This race meeting is truly chic, with strong associations to everything vintage – it’s vintage car and antique/vintage fairs draw swarms of people every year – this is the classiest of races and the absolute opposite of Aintree. Quintessentially English, the event is home to afternoon teas, Pimms and parasols and draws a host of chic A-list celebrities.
The dress code: Chic, understated glamour and elegance
What to wear: Harp back to a bygone era, channelling fashion with a refined retro edge. Flowing maxis, vintage style tea dresses, summer hats and floral fascinators are the theme.
Tipple of choice: It’s classic and oh so chic, the Gin and Tonic.
Get the Look: Darling Abbie Dress £76, Jarlo Siobhan Dress in Lilac £83.95, Aftershock London Lucy Peep Toe High Heels in Gold £74, Aftershock London Millie Embellished Clutch in Gold £89, Rachel Black Millinery Sparkle Headband £265 Go all out with our vintage inspired dresses by GatsbyLady.
When: 10th August (International Arabian Race Day); free entry!
Where: In Berkshire
What: The only free race day in the British racing calendar, Newbury race course holds an exclusive Arabian race day that’s as showy as the country it represents, drawing a crowd of over fifteen thousand well-dressed hoi-polloi. Fancy rubbing shoulders with rich Sheikhs? Well this event is your chance, and there’s hot weather guaranteed, a best dressed Ladies competition to dress up for and free gifts for every race-goer.
The dress code: Feminine and summery
What to wear: With previous stylish attendees including Amanda Holden, Joan Collins and Tinie Tempah, the dress-to-impress stakes are high. Think bright summer colours and SS14 savvy styles such as sequins and embellishment. If you want to win the ladies best-dressed prize, be sure to groom to perfection, whilst a hat is a sure-fire advantage.
Tipple of choice: It’s Pimms O’Clock – there really is no better way to enjoy the sunshine.
Get the Look: Forever Unique Mosaic Dress £135, Forever Unique Ivy Dress in Ivory White £220, Aftershock London Lydia Pointed High Heels in Nude and Black £69, Rachel Black Millinery Lexington Headband in Black £75
Cheltenham – The International
When: 12th December – 13th December
Where: In the Cotswolds
What: This is the racing event for the professionals; expect men with binoculars, lots of tweed and a very busy bar. There’s plenty of fun for the newbie too, with kooky fairs, fine dining, live music and of course the opportunity to dress to the nines to impress at the prestigious race course.
The dress code: Serious and stylish
What to wear: It’s time to look professional… ditch the glitz and go for something impeccably stylish; keep arms covered and a sensible hemline, plus prepare for the British winter weather with a warm cover-up. Furs and headbands are very popular too.
Tipple of choice: An Irish Coffee will keep you warm, merry and on the ball.
Get the Look: Tempest Billie Dress in Cream £125, Aftershock London Layla Oyster Pink Hard Case Clutch, £103, Aftershock London Lydia Pointed High Heels in Black £69, Rachel Black Millinery Black and Gold Headpiece £285. Keep cosy with our delectable collection of jackets and shrugs.
When: 3rd April – 5th April; Ladies Day 4 April; The Grand National is held on Saturday 5th April
Where: Just north of Liverpool
What: Home to the biggest British race of the year – the Grand National – Aintree draws the north-west’s glitterati, including the most glamorous of WAGs, so if you’re looking to rub shoulders with the A-list (Colleen Rooney and The Saturdays are regulars) and glam up for the day, this is your event.
The dress code: 100% undisputed glamour
What to wear: The Aintree attire is not for the faint-hearted; either don something short, flirty and fun or go for a fabulous sweeping maxi. Pair with killer platform heels, statement jewels, bold lips and the obligatory deep tan for a hot-to-trot race day look.
Tipple of choice: The men may all be drinking beer, but stay ladylike with sexy cocktails.
Get the Look: Forever Unique Ashlyne Dress £190, Forever Unique Amaryllis Dress in Coral and White £330, Moda In Pelle Sazzy Shoe in Silver £99.95, Aftershock London Ruth Clutch in White £44, Rachel Black Millinery Twist Beret Headpiece £75
Shop all Race Day dresses for a fabulous race day.