A Look Back at the Fashion on Show at the Grand National 2015

The Grand National at Liverpool’s Aintree Racecourse is one of the greatest and most highly anticipated sporting events in Britain. It’s the biggest horse racing event in the world, garnering millions of viewers every year in the UK according to Oye! Times. The races are thrilling, but what truly makes the event a spectacle is the fashion statements showcased by the guests lucky enough to score tickets to the live action.

This year, Many Clouds won the race which was jockey Leighton Aspell’s second consecutive win as reported by Betfair, although eyes weren’t only on the horses during the proceedings. Many people photographed fashion-conscious women donning some of the boldest hats the event has ever seen. The race is always a good excuse to get dressed up, and for some, it’s the only opportunity they get to wear their bright, striking accessories each year.

During Ladies Day, women really brought their A-game and arrived in classy outfits topped off with their most impressionable head pieces, from retro glam hats to the more unconventional headwear. The hats were unique, with some being flirty and feminine, while others, quite daring.

Let’s take a look at some of the most memorable hats from the event.

Image courtesy of express.co.uk
Image courtesy of express.co.uk


A female race-goer opts for a complete rainbow getup as she accessorizes her colorful mesh-hemmed dress with mismatching shoes, gloves, a green clutch, blue scarf, and a rainbow mesh head-piece in the shape of a pompom.









Image courtesy of mirror.co.uk
Image courtesy of mirror.co.uk


A group of friends take a selfie to capture the different designs on their floral hats.









Image courtesy of mirror.co.uk
Image courtesy of mirror.co.uk


A woman stuns fellow race-goers with her brightly colored hat composed of real flowers, embellished with feathers and embroidered fabrics and materials.









Image courtesy of liverpoolecho.co.uk
Image courtesy of liverpoolecho.co.uk


Floral was definitely a recurring motif at the event as one of the ladies wore a hat that had a playful take on a bouquet of flowers.












Image Courtesy of http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk
Image Courtesy of http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk


Despite the popularity of flowers on women’s headgear at this year’s event, some guests believed feathers were the classier choice.

Breeders’ Cup Heads Up

Breed the best to the best and hope for the best.
the Breeder’s axiom

In a perfect world every day would be Ladies’ Day. In the world of thoroughbred racing Ladies’ Day is October 24, opening day of the 25th running of the Breeders Cup Championships. The Breeders’ Cup Ladies Day Classic (formerly known as Breeders Cup Distaff) will be the premier race on the Friday program featuring five races for the distaff divisions (fillys only) with the feature race being the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic worth $2 million.

The Breeders’ cup was created in 1982 by Kentucky horseman John R. Gaines as a year-end championship for North American thoroughbred racing. It also draws outstanding horses world wide. Day 2 of the event is considered to be the the second richest day in sports, the Dubai World Cup night being the first.

This year, to the organizers’ credit, the day will be profitable not only to the breeders owners and competent and/or lucky handicappers; two global charity events will benefit as well. The Breeders’ Cup association has established relationships with St. Judes and Komen for the Cure and has set a goal of raising $250, 000 for each organization during the 2008 season. St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is internationally recognized for its pioneering work in finding cures and saving children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases and freely shares its discoveries with scientific and medical communities around the world. No family ever pays for treatments not covered by insurance and families without insurance are never asked to pay. Komen for the Cure is the world’s largest grassroots network of breast cancer survivors and activists to save lives, empower people, ensure quality care for all and energize science to find the cures.

The program will be held at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California. The average temperature in this area is 81, with an average rainfall of 0.57 inches. If you’re planning to attend you may expect to experience hot weather and little likelihood of rain — perfect hat weather. So what style of hat complements the fashions of the season yet provides comfort and sun protection in a warm climate?

Polly Singer Couture Hats and Veils is a step, or in racing parlance, a stride ahead with a newly designed line of what we call “Transitional Straws”. Playfully named in this blog only for Breeder’s Cup winners, these hats are fashioned of parisisal straw in our best loved shapes (The Madhatter, Simply Elegant, Blythe Spirit) in warmer autumn hues and finished with trims, feathers, flowers and fabric which are in keeping with the season. Below is a gallery of the newest designs. Sorry, these particular hats aren’t yet available for purchase online but I invite you to peruse the gallery. If there’s a design that suits one of your fall ensembles, please call, we are happy to discuss designs and are taking orders for them by phone. On an interesting note, Polly designed a hat last year that proved lucky for owner Theresa Mobley of West Point Thoroughbreds, whose horse, Awsome Gem finished third in The Breeders Cup Classic .

If you can’t make it to The Breeders’ Cup this year, you may follow the races on television. For the third straight year ESPN will televise live coverage of both days of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships. The following link will take you to the schedule.


Opening day, Friday, October 24 will feature five races for females only which, according to Breeder’s Club president, Greg Avioli, is a show case for the talents of the best female thoroughbreds in the world. If you aren’t fortunate to be at Santa Anita that weekend, I urge you throw a Ladies’ Day Party; to assemble your best lady-friends, favorite refreshments, The Daily Racing Form and show support for Filly Power. You might offer prizes for The Alpha Mare, Best Handicapper, Most Spirited Display of Lady-Like Support and, naturally, a special award for Best Fall Hat. It’s our day, ladies, lets revel in it!

by Jan Masters Yon

Royal Ascot: Win by a Head


Everyone has a head, so everyone has a possibility to wear a hat. People feel better for wearing them.
Philip Treacy

The Royal Ascot Race Meet, Ladies Day in particular, is one of the high holy days of millinery design. Beautiful, luscious, sometimes daring hats repose on every head. In accordance with the Dress and Etiquette Code requirement for entrance into the royal enclosure, strapless dresses, halter tops, bare midriffs, spray-on tans and any display of underwear is strictly frowned upon, however hats for ladies and top hats for gentlemen are compulsory. Yet another reason to be an anglophile.

In my opinion, Ascot 2008 saw the British Royal Family better turned out than ever before. According to United Press International, bookmakers in England reported a high number of bets were placed predicting that Queen Elizabeth II would break with tradition and attend opening day sporting a fascinator, that is, a small lavishly trimmed hat worn at a jaunty angle.


However, the Queen arrived wearing a pastel blue Phillip Somerville squarely set, medium brimmed hat to accessorize her Steward Previn dress and coat. On Thursday, Ladies Day, Her Royal Highness was both elegant and chic in a black and ivory print dress/coat ensemble topped with an asymmetric brimmed hat in ivory with a spray of black silk leaves. All three pieces were designed by Rachel Trevor-Morgan.


The entrance of Queen Elizabeth may have left a raft of disappointed bettors in its wake but the younger members of the royal family overwhelmingly chose the fascinator as a race day favorite.

Zara Phillips, daughter of Princess Anne appeared in a gravity defying monochromatic saucer hat in cream colored straw trimmed with a brace of large cream colored roses.


HRH Princess Beatrice wore a smart, small white fascinator trimmed in black, her sister HRH Princess Eugenie sported a small blue cap heaped with blue silk roses and periwinkle blue cut coque feathers. Both hats were worn low on the forehead and off-center. Thursday, Ladies Day, both granddaughters of the Queen followed the trend of neutral colors and asymmetry with small cream colored hats worn at dramatic angles.


I’m pleased to tell you that All You Need is Love Hats and Veils was represented at Ascot – in the Royal Enclosure, no less. Recently, Polly had the enviable task of creating a hat for a young woman’s first visit to Ascot. The resulting design was, as you might guess, neutral in color, designed to be worn off kilter, trimmed with a cascade of stripped coque feathers tucked under a smartly angled brim. A prototype of the hat and Nicole Miller dress, courtesy of Lexington’s Bella Rose which inspired it is shown here modeled by Isabel Abbott Yon, Junior Member of the Lexington Ballet Company.


One needn’t attend The Royal Ascot Race Meet to learn from it. More pictures of racegoers can be seen by visiting the following links.



To recap, so to speak, millinery trend spotters, be alert to fascinators, monochromatic, neutral palettes and shallow crowned saucer hats trim both over and under the brim – all worn on the diagonal. Inspired by Ascot, Polly will be posting some new designs along these lines. I encourage you to watch for them on the website and, as always, will be interested to hear your opinions.

By Jan Masters Yon