The Gentlemans’ Gentleman

Last week I had the pleasure of judging Fashions on the Field at the Geelong Cup alongside Dom Bagnato. Not only is he a dapper gent and lovely to boot, his range of suits has any girl swooning if her man wears one.rebeccashare

Judging alongside Dom, milliner Rebecca Share, GT Fashions Editor Renee Enright, Nina O’Brien from Track Mode and Joanne from Pret a Porter designer dress rental.

With the Spring Racing Carnival in full swing and the main days just a week away, it’s a timely reminder to the gents out there that ‘any old suit’ from the back of the wardrobe just won’t cut it at Fashions on the Field – or in the eyes of your lady friend.

Dom has some suggestions for any man purchasing a suit for the 2015 carnival, and you’d be hard pressed to get advice from anyone so well educated on the matter.

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“You do not want to see any lines, wrinkles, pulling or bunching on your jacket or trousers, anyone of these means the suit is too big or too small. Your movement should not be restricted at all. When you try on a suit, you’re looking for a good fit in what’s called your natural stance, where your stand up straight with your arms at your side, “ says Dom.

No one wants to see boring or unflattering suits at Flemington, so make sure you heed Dom’s advice and take note of the little things. Your shirt and tie – the finer details! – are just as important.

Dom suggests experimenting with colours and patterns, otherwise you’ll look as though you have dressed for the office and if you are opting for a printed shirt, ensure your tie is more plain and vice versa. Clashing is not always the best idea.

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Pocket Squares should feature elements of colour from your shirt or tie and tie pins highlight an attention to detail – it will be noticed if you are vying for a the title of best dressed at the track!

The season’s featured colours include a palette of beautiful blues – slate, royal, teal and navy with mint, rose and orange shirting and ties adding dynamic colour highlights.

“Above all be daring,” says Dom.

You heard him boys!

Daily News – Spring Racing Millinery

Yesterday I attended the Myer Spring Fashion Lunch at Flemington and host Samantha Armytage was wearing an awesome fascinator. Or, headpiece, if you will.

Sam ArmytageSamantha Amytage wears Ann Shoebridge headpiece and Alex Perry dress. Image thanks to Donna Demaio

It took me several Instagram searches and a bit of googling to track down who had created said headpiece, before discovering it was made by milliner Ann Shoebridge.

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I ask you to admire this piece of millinery and its cleverness, playfulness and style, ahead of the Spring Racing Carnival, where no doubt many will not bother with headwear, or find something at a department store.

This bespoke piece is genius – and any who would like to donate to my Spring Racing Fund are welcome to help me pay for it.

Birthday Suit

Sarah KempsonThis past weekend I celebrated my 30th birthday, and this is what I wore. You can find all these pieces in stores now!

Jayson Brunsdon Black Label Winter Bloom Dress $189, from Myer (Psst! $20 off offer on now!)
Wittner Topper Mulberry Heels, $50, from
Diamond Earrings and Yellow Sapphire & Diamond Ring, with thanks to Keshett Jewellery
Manicure by Wicked Bliss

Venue: Honey Bar and Restaurant, South Melbourne
Image thanks to Meagan Harding Photography



Oaks Day

One for the ladies, Oaks Day was humid and overcast as I made my way to Flemington for the third day of the Cup Carnival. Wearing the girliest of all outfits (my cousin has dubbed me a ‘forest fairy;), I was hopeful the rain would hold off until our work was done, and that we’d have plenty of time post shift to enjoy the hospitality of the Birdcage.

Sarah Kempson SchweppesLeft: At home before heading to the races, wearing Morgan and Taylor floral headband, Target dress (Psst! It’s on sale!!) and Sachi shoes.
Right: In the Schweppes Bar, looking rather windswept and tired at the end of the day! 

Oaks Day is all about the fashions, with the National winner for Womens Racewear at Myer Fashions on the Field being crowned. Representing Victoria, 19 year old Chloe took out the sash, with oodles of prizes including a $95k Lexus, a holiday, a Myer shopping spree, multiple TVs, luggage and whole stack more. Chloe has a serious dedication to the clothes – hailing from the Northern Territory, Chloe flew to Melbourne on Tuesday, won the Cup Day fashion competition, headed home for an exam before jetting back to Flemington for Thursdays final. Just wow!!

Chloe Moo LexusNational Fashions on the Field 2013 Winner, Chloe, is awarded the Lexus!

Speaking of exhausted, I didn’t think I was but an embarrassing little fainting spell says otherwise. In the manner of shoeless drunk girls on the lawn at the end of the day, I collapsed before lunch, smack into a lineup of fashion contestants waiting to go onstage. A bruised knee and a bruised ego, the team at MSS security and St Johns ambulance, as well as my MiNC colleagues, were all wonderful in making sure I was all ok before I resumed my position on the VIP door. Time for an iron levels check up I think (I promise I’d eaten breakfast and all that jazz!!).

Jeff Banks and Sarah KempsonWith Fashions on the Field host and man about town, London suit designer Jeff Banks.

Following the end of a freezing shift on the door, Olivia and I headed to the Birdcage for a somewhat more subdued experience than I had planned! We arrived at Bar Schweppes – presented by Broadsheet – looking for a seat, a heater, and some food. Schweppes had all three, and the food was amazing. Morsels cooked up by Melbourne’s best eateries (and cocktails from our most talented bartenders!!) were served and consumed immediately and I was thrilled to note the table menus also listed which of the items were gluten free! HUGE thumbs up to these guys and a massive thanks for the corn chip encrusted chicken and chips, really hitting the spot at the end of the day.

Sarah Kempson, Olivia Nunn, Emma BoggiL-R: Sarah, Emma and Olivia. Emma wears Manning Cartell; Olivia wears Rodeo Show with Adorn Collection Millinery.

Three days down and one to go – sadly the weather for Stakes Day is looking less than pleasant so an outfit change is in order!

Derby Day at the Spring Carnival

It felt like I blinked and it was November. All of a sudden, it was the start of the Cup Carnival; Derby Day was upon us and with it, the most divine weather for a race day we’ve had in quite some time.

Sarah Kempson Derby DayOn the Myer Fashions on the Field Catwalk

Having been TERRIBLY disorganised this year, I was still deciding on an outfit the night before the event. Testing frocks twelve hours before you are due at the track is never a good idea, but the wonder that is my wardrobe spilt forth several options, with the final decision being the tried and tested Dion Lee for Cue number. With millinery provided by Morgan and Taylor and shoes by Sachi, I procured a clutch from Kmart and earrings for a pop of colour from Design Studio at Myer. I was ready to roll.

Sarah Kempson and Olivia NunnWith Olivia in the Myer Fashions on the Field VIP enclosure
(Olivia wears HarryWho with millinery by Adorn and shoes by Mollini)

It was great to be back on track with my Fashions on the Field VIP team – clearly something Olivia said here was hilarious (and I don’t think we’d had any champagne at this point either!) The weather didn’t disappoint, and neither did the calibre of the Fashions on the Field for 2013.

Myer Fashions on the Field winner Derby Day

The gorgeous winner, Ashley Albanese, made her dress from leather and only finished it at 5am! She will be on Oaks Day to vie for the title of Victorian champion and be in the running for a stack of amazing prizes, including a Luxus!

Sarah Kempson Olivia Nunn Emma Heaslip Derby DayWith Olivia and Emma – we make a great looking team!

Another fantastic race day is done – one down, three to go!