Kirsten Morland has been patiently waiting her time to compete in this season's national fashions in the field (FITF) final - The Ned Prix de Fashion - after becoming the first competition qualifier way back in October 2021 when taking out Hawke's Bay Racing's virtual FITF competition.
We sat down for a chat with this lovely regional finalist to learn a little more about her FITF career, including a look at her favourite raceday outfit so far.
So Kirsten firstly, well done on qualifying for The Ned Prix de Fashion. Is this your first time making it into the competition?
Yes, this is my first time qualifying. I was absolutely thrilled and shocked; it was a huge honour to be selected as the representative for Hawke's Bay Racing - especially as I have only been entering fashions in the field competitions for the past 18 months.
Outside of raceday fashion, do you like to dress up in your normal day-to-day life or is this an anomaly?
I work as an account manager in the construction industry, so my work wardrobe is hi-vis and steel-cap boots.
Fashions in the field is my chance to dress up, as life is too short to wear boring clothes.
What do you enjoy most about fashions in the field competitions?
The greatest enjoyment for me is the friendships that you develop all around the country.
Can you give us a hint about what you might be wearing for the regional final of The Ned Prix de Fashion?
Classic … with a little twist. The dress that I purchased to wear for the regional final arrived from overseas in early November last year and has patiently been waiting in my wardrobe for over six months. My millinery has been made by Monika Neuhauser who also made my qualifying headpiece for the Hawke's Bay competition.
However, a few weeks ago a designer released a dress online which complements my millinery perfectly. I am now waiting patiently for express post to deliver my new dress and rethinking my entire outfit. I'm sure dress number one will have its moment on stage eventually!
Do you follow horse racing as well, or is fashions in the field where it’s at for you on raceday?
I have always had a love of the horse racing industry. I lived in Melbourne for several years where I was a Victoria Racing Club member. Being trackside at Flemington during Melbourne Cup Week and seeing all the amazing fashion sparked my interest in this world.
Do you consider yourself a trend-setter or follower?
“In a world full of trends I want to remain a classic”
What has been your favourite raceday look that you have worn?
Probably the look from when I was awarded the “Classic Racewear Winner” at Te Rapa in 2020 which was only my second time competing in New Zealand.
The outfit was styled around my headpiece which I wore to the Melbourne Cup 10 years ago. That headpiece was custom-made by Louise Macdonald which, to me, shows that great craftsmanship in millinery is timeless.
What advice would you give to people keen to start entering fashions in the field competitions but who aren’t quite sure where to start?
Reach out to the community on social media, you will find that all of the ladies love sharing their passion with fellow enthusiasts.
To me, fashions in the field is…