You didn’t think I’d leave my boys hanging, did you?
If you’re looking to get decked out for the Greatest Two Minutes in Sports and don’t know where to start – here’s a handy checklist that may help you perfect that raceday ensemble. Try one or try all:
1. Hat – This classic straw hat envokes all things Derby. It will transport your outfit back in time to 1943 and make you feel like you’re watching Count Fleet cross the finish line. Men’s Boater Straw Hat by Lauryx, $39.99 opensky.com
2. Tie – Who doesn’t love a tie? No matter the type, traditional necktie, seven-fold, bow tie or clip-on, ties are one of the easiest ways to express your personal Derby style. I love this dual-patterned *reversible* bow-tie from Brooks Brothers. It’s a great investment for only $65 because you can switch the pattern around and be ready to go for the Preakness too! Small Dot & Alternating Stripe Reversible Bow Tie, $65, brooksbrothers.com
3. Prints and Patterns – Don’t be afraid to mix and match your patterns. Especially if you stick to a color scheme and carry it through in your ensemble. This Madras button-down shirt from Kiel James Patrick is one is perfect because it’s bold and has multiple colors that you can play off of. Dress shirts with patterned collars and cuffs are also in, which can add a nice under a crisp blazer. Indian Summer Madras Shirt, $98, kieljamespatrick.com
4. Colored Trousers – Yeah, yeah…I know its not for every dude, but I enjoy seeing a good pair of color trousers on a horseplayer. Pants or chino shorts are great to wear for an afternoon at the races and are still comfortable enough to wear into the night for the Mayweather – Pacquiao fight.
5. Signature Blazer – Break out your blazers, boy it is THE Kentucky Derby. The first saturday of MAY to me screams Seersucker. A glimpse of what summer will have in store for you. I remember my first seersucker blazer… and seersucker dress…and seersucker pants… Okay. Go get one. Stays Cool Two-button Seersucker Suit, $118, josabank.com
6. Flask… – obviously this would be an essential on my list. Chances are that wherever you are viewing the Kentucky Derby (hopefully) there will be Mint Julep’s on tap, but just in case you need to supply your own, why no go for storing your Woodford Reserve in this embroidered Smather’s and Branson flask? Mint Julep Needlepoint Flask, $65, smathersandbranson.com
7. Belt – It’s all in the details. Let this belt provide you a little extra luck. Horseshoe Canvas Club Belt, $49, vineyardvines.com.
8. Socks – I always find it funny when I compliment a gentlemen’s outfit at the track and they lift up their pants leg to show me their fun, colorful socks. Grab a pair of new socks to match the silks on your favorite horse like these Gallant & Beau trouser socks that look quite similar to Zenyatta’s silks: Islington Socks, $19, gallantbeau.com
9. Cufflinks – Make everyone jealous in your Derby crew by rocking these custom-made cufflinks designed by my friend and fellow Skidmore Alum, Sam of Auburn Jewelry. Pick the color and maybe even make one of the cufflinks a monogram with your initials. Racehorse Cufflinks, $165, Auburn-jewelry.com
10. Shoes – What’s not to like about this shoe. From the cognac leather to the pop of blue inside of the shoe that is carried out into the laces, these will make any outfit look like a winner. Cassius Leather Wing Tip Derby Brouges, $140, tedbaker.com
Good luck choosing your outfit! Make sure you tweet and tag your photos so I can see how dapper you all will look!