When you’re at the Kentucky Derby that is!
I have personally always wondered what the story behind the hats is, and I have to admit it is the ONLY thing that lures me into even taking notice of the derby. There is quite a bit of history behind the Kentucky derby hats for women and at one time it was considered proper etiquette to wear a hat outside the home. If you did not it was thought to lower your social standing all the way to a homeless beggar. Many women used to change their hat many times throughout the day as well.
The founding father of the Kentucky Derby Colonel M. Lewis Clark Jr., envisioned a racing environment that would feel comfortable and luxurious, an event that would remind people of European horse racing so he modeled the derby after the Royal Ascot when there was a strict dress code that included wearing a hat and a full morning dress. This dress code caught on very quickly and spread across to the major racetracks in the United States. Hats have been worn at the Kentucky Derby since 1875 and now it is a tradition that might as well be written in stone. Not to mention wearing a hat to the Kentucky Derby is believed to bear good luck!
So there you have it. What was once a strict and mandatory dress code has transformed into a spring fashion show to show off an accessory that has long been forgotten by the modern woman. Some of the hats are sexy and others are completely OUTRAGEOUS but all of them pay homage to times long gone where a woman wasn’t judged by her purse but by her hat!
The Kentucky Derby is considered one of the MOST fashionable sporting events in the world and it’s no wonder why. A hat can cost anywhere you anywhere from 200 dollar up to 2,000.
Since I loathe most sporting events I am certifying the Kentucky Derby as a DAME worthy event. Any place I can get dress up drink mint juleps (they're delish and a favorite drink of my favorite era the 50's!) and hang out around other fashionable people sounds like a great sporting event to me!