Dressing for the races is a tradition here in Kentucky. So it's no surprise that the first Breeders' Cup to be held at Keeneland has us thinking about what to wear.
Fall suedes, leathers, knits and cozy wools are sure to be front-runners when it comes to attire for the two-day event. And to accessorize your outfit, there are plenty of fashionable options to be found close to home.
Stuart Mercer and Chet Lott of Lexington have created a line of ties and pocket squares for the occasion. Designed under the new Chester Stuart Bespoke label and handmade in England of woven silk, the collection includes the official Breeders' Cup tie.
They are currently available at the Stuart Mercer Gentleman's Shoppe on Clay Avenue and will be sold at Keeneland and other locations during the Breeders' Cup.
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Mercer and Lott set out to create a collection that celebrated the Breeders' Cup but would remain a wardrobe staple. Mercer said their thinking was, "Let's make a tie that's a beautiful tie that can be worn any time."
For inspiration they looked to Lexington's iconic horse farm fences, their subtle image crisscrossing the pattern. The elegant motif of a sculptured horse, was modeled after the Breeders' Cup trophy.
"Anything that was simple and obvious we didn't want to do," Mercer said.
Lindsay Combs of Lexington crafts equestrian-inspired jewelry and accessories from vintage finds to create, "Jewelry that's somehow more wearable for a new generation," she said.
Combs creates pieces using vintage brass or by, "Tearing apart old brooches and pins, using out-of-the ordinary things. Maybe it's an old bullet casing, or an old pearl handled pocket knife."
Her company, Lela Ray Jewelry, named for her grandmother, offers bracelets, necklaces, men's cuff links and flasks. You'll find them at L.V. Harkness, Entwine and Peggy's Gifts & Accessories in Lexington as well as Etsy.com/shop/lelarayjewelry.
When choosing jewelry for fall wardrobes, Combs suggests going a bit bolder.
"You have a lot of heavier fabrics and deeper hues and you have to worry about necklines a lot more," she said. "In fall you can get away with chunkier, heavier pieces."
What's a horse race in Kentucky without the hat?
If you've visited Keene land or Churchill Downs in the last few years, you probably spotted one of the many beautiful designs by Christine A. Moore.
Based in Manhattan, Moore, makes frequents trips to trunk shows in Kentucky and is the official milliner of the Breeders' Cup.
The chance to create looks for crisp autumn days during the Breeders' Cup is a thrill, Moore said. "It's so exciting that it's in Kentucky. I get to be more creative in the fall."
Even though seasonal blacks and browns are a staple, Moore predicts, "It's still going to be a very colorful Breeders' Cup." She said Kentuckians love color.
Moore's designs, available at the Breeders' Cup website as well as the Keeneland Gift Shop, include rich plums, pinks and blues.
No matter your style, a Moore says a hat should fit well, frame your face and complement your skin tone.
Think of it as a beautiful accessory and a Breeders' Cup keepsake.
"Your best souvenir from the day at the races is your hat," she said. "Because whenever you see that hat you'll remember what a fabulous time you had."