Although many of the world's top fashion shows can provide an fascinating introduction to the next season's styles, for many who are interested to see what the latest range of cutting-edge designs look like in real life, there's no better way than by simply visiting the races.
Horse racing has enjoyed a long and close relationship with the aristocracy in many countries, and because of this many top couture houses have sought to use these spectacular occasions to unveil their latest creations.
So here's a look at how high-end fashion has managed to gain access to the racing world and provide an extra dose of entertainment alongside the betting options and of course the racing itself.
The introduction of ladies days as the pinnacle of fashion for many racing events has been greatly enjoyed by spectators, attendees and of course the press who relish the opportunity to comment upon the fashion successes and mistakes of the many celebrities who flock to the event.
Because of the huge amount of attention that many race-going celebrities attract, there's a great deal of competitiveness amongst many of the high-end designers to get such celebrities to wear their latest creations.
Although many of the prestigious events attract aristocratic celebrities such as Zara Phillips, it's invariably the fashion faux-pas of some of the more alcoholically-enhanced racegoers that attracts the greatest amount of press derision.
In order to not attract the wrath of the fashion police, it's always a good idea to take a few tips from some of the top designers in the country. So we asked Denise Mahmud from the London-based brand Moixa who specialise in beautifully-crafted and trend-resistant clothing her thoughts and advice on fashion at the races.
Why do you think horse racing events have become such an important part of the fashion calendar?
Considered a formal social event, horse racing has had close ties to fashion for decades. Since the early 1900s the races have been a place to see and show off new fashion trends.
If you had to design an outfit for the races, how would you get around the restrictions over dress codes in regards to hem lengths?
I designed outfits for the races every year. I try to help my clients understand that lady-like doesn't have to mean boring. Instead of working around the restrictions, I try and make them a feature that reflects the client's personality and style.
Do you approve of the rise of fascinators?
Personally, I'm not a fan of fascinators. They're like an Alice Band gone wrong.
Denise Mahmud's advice regarding dress codes is of key importance when considering fashion at the races. Many of racing's key social events such as Royal Ascot will frequently implement restrictive codes of dress for different areas of the racecourse and as such, it's always a good idea to check with the race course's website before attending.
The subject of fascinators is particularly sensitive in the world of racing, as many particularly outrageous designs have led to top racing events such as Royal Ascot banning the offensive headwear.
However, much as betting is part of the fun of Ladies Day thanks to sites like Betway who have a handy new mobile betting feature on their website, it's always important to remember to embrace the style challenges with a degree of fun and enthusiasm.
Whilst it can be tempting to try and adapt some of the latest designs from the couture houses into your look for the races, keeping your hemlines traditional and perhaps embracing some exciting new colours and textures could be a better way to approach this fashion dilemma.
Online boutiques such as Little Black Dress have provided a good selection of race-day dresses that capture a degree of sophistication thanks to some sharp 1960s cuts, whilst the subtle use of feminine floral imagery softens the look to make it perfect for the coming of spring.
As the many of the racing world's top events such as the Cheltenham Gold Cup tend to take place in the colder months of the year, it's always a good idea to try and layer up too. On-trend textures such as coloured suede can provide all of us with a stylish look that will keep us warm when we're out at the track all day. And if you're feeling particularly countrified, then you can always pay a fashion tribute to horse-racing's country origins by adopting a tweed look in the form of a sharply-fitting blazer.
So whether you're sipping champagne in a chic A-line dress in the executive box, or cheering on one of the favourites in the race in your warmest winter jacket, make sure that you have fun with your look and celebrate your betting at the races with the very best in British fashion.
The Design House, is a hub of Irish fashion and design, offering cutting edge fashion, jewellery, bridal, vintage and a variety of crafts. Housed in a fabulous Georgian building, a space where over 50 Irish designers, 60 craft designers and 16 artists live out their creative dreams.
The concept of the Design House is to bring together designers, craftspeople and artists, in a space where they can create, meet with prospective clients and retail their products to a wide range of customers.
Having just celebrated the success of their summer 2015 Fashion Show in partnership with The Mater Foundation (official charity for the Mater Hospital –Dublin)
The show offered attendees a peek into this seasons latest limited edition looks ranging from daywear, accessories, occasion wear and bridal.
Here are some of the highlights from the show
Wedding dress by Evelyn Campbell
Evelyn Campbell started her design career with her Street wear fashion labels, Rich Clothing Company, Pump, and Bodyline. Her focus now has shifted towards bridal and special occasion wear creating unique and individualized garments for the lady that walks by her own tune.
Dress by Golden Stitch
Ginan Abbas, originally from Iraq, has lived in Ireland for 14 years. Her designs are inspired by nature and beautiful fabrics. Ginan wants women to feel beautiful, because she feels that, ‘There is so much pressure on women to conform to the perfect body shape’. She wants them to celebrate their body shape by designing pieces that fits them rather than the other way around. ‘I create unique and unusual pieces that will stand out from the norm but which fit the wearer perfectly.’
Dress by B Fashion Design and Hat by Mark Garvie Millinery
B fashion Design is a fashion design label by Bébhinn Flood. Bébhinn graduated from the Limerick Institute of Technology with a BA (Hons) in Fashion Design in 2004. After qualifying, Bébhinn gained experience of couture fashion, working with noted designers such as John Rocha, Joanne Hayes and Carol Smith. Subsequent to that Bébhinn worked in the mass market side of the trade as a designer at Max Pierre. Her designs can be described as modern vintage chic, integrating classic craft techniques with modern fabrics to create unique modern pieces that are fun, wearable, practical, quirky and unique yet still graceful, elegant and definitively feminine.
Mark Garvie Millinery, having trained as a bespoke milliner in the UK and Ireland after leaving the world of floristry where he was an international award winning floral designer. His designs are inspired his floral designs, architecture, art, sculpture and nature.
Kimonos by Kimono Queen, yellow gown by The Golden Stitch, and colourful gown by B Fashion Design
Bags from The Designer Exchange and tights from Tights Department
Find out more about these new Rising stars and the Design house @ www.designhouse.ie
Images courtesy of The Design House