By day she’s a Canterbury dairy farmer and busy mum to four girls, but every once in a while, Katie O’Neill looks forward to getting glam for raceday.
She’s been awarded sashes in New Zealand and Australia, and in February she won The Ned Prix de Fashion 2020 - our country's national racewear title.
Ahead of making her Ellerslie judging debut tomorrow when she helps select the male & female winner of our NEWMARKET. Style Spotter competition (which sees the female winner pre-qualify for the regional final of The Ned Prix de Fashion AND both winners take home a $1000 voucher to spend in the national's fashion capital), Katie shares her tips for catching a judge’s eyes.
What are you looking to see when you judge the NEWMARKET. Style Award?
I always like an outfit that stands out; something that is cool enough to make you look twice.
I love clean lines to an outfit, but I think to have wow factor there needs to be something a little bit unpredictable about the look.
How it’s put together is key.
What are some key trends you’re loving for spring and summer racedays?
I like the hints of 60s and 70s coming through and I love that.
We’re seeing it in slightly retro prints, colourways, florals, and patterns, but with a modern twist.
I love pantsuits too. If done well, there’s no reason pants can’t be racing fashion – after all, they are both stylish and practical.
What inspired your own outfit for tomorrow?
It’s such fun putting together an outfit.
I often start looking at designers as they release their runway looks and snap something up early on.
I start with the outfit and then add the accessories later.
A great milliner can tailor something to your outfit and face shape. I bought an amazing piece of millinery from Australia but can’t find anything to work with it!
Now that I’m not entering the competitions anymore, I get to wear stuff that doesn’t necessarily play by the rules and be more of a trendsetter.
My outfit is a modern take on a Gucci 1970s vibe and I’m so excited to wear it.
Getting dressed up is worlds apart from my life on the farm and being a busy mum to four girls, so coming to Auckland for racedays is such a highlight.
Having something that is just for you is so good for your wellbeing.