Dressing for The Season ahead

Dressing for The Season ahead

If 2020 was an "Annus horribilis" (it makes 1992 - when that term was embedded in the public consciousness by the Queen - look like a walk in the park), we're looking at 2021 through entirely more optimistic lens, hoping that a semblance of normality will soon resume and we shall all be able to enjoy life to the fullest once more. And at Favourbrook, that means experiencing the joy of getting dressed up for memorable occasions.

We expect that with the slew of weddings cancelled in 2020, one should keep a pretty clear diary throughout the summer months as the invitations are likely to come thick and fast if restrictions on large group events are indeed lifted. Or perhaps you are planning on your own wedding next year, in which case congratulations! Either way, we are the experts at morning dress and would love to help you find the perfect morning suit for such occasions. We have a number of different morning coat styles in various fabrics to suit the time of the year, plus over 400 waistcoat styles so you can create a unique formalwear look for the big day.  

Then there's the British season, which all started in the 17th century when the upper classes followed the court to London during the summer months to take part in social events and introduce (read 'put up for sale') their daughters into society. Thankfully, strategic marriages are not really the done thing these days, but having an excuse to get dressed up, engage in a little flirting and drink your bodyweight in champagne? Well it serves up plenty of that. Naturally each event is very different, with dress codes varying greatly so ensure you do your homework to avoid embarrassment. From March to September, you'll find a packed calendar of social, sporting and art events to see and be seen at so make sure your wardrobe is fully primed and ready!

 

The Cheltenham Festival (16th – 19th March)

SAGE CROMER LINEN NEWPORT JACKET

SAGE CROMER LINEN
NEWPORT JACKET

SAGE CROMER LINEN WINDSOR TROUSER

SAGE CROMER LINEN
WINDSOR TROUSER

WHITE COLNE LINEN CUTAWAY COLLAR SHIRT

WHITE COLNE LINEN
CUTAWAY COLLAR SHIRT

First up on the calendar is the Cheltenham Festival, comprising of four days of premier racing with the Gold Cup on the Friday. While not as formal as Royal Ascot, over recent years racegoers have definitely upped their game. Given the course location on the edge of the Cotswolds and the fact that the event is in March, you'll need to wrap up pretty warm. For gents, tweed tailoring is perfect, especially worn with a windowpane check shirt, and contrast waistcoat. For ladies, the smart option would entail an elegant dress with a velvet coat and a shawl wrap for extra protection from the wind.


The Grand National at Aintree (Saturday 10th April)

WATERLOO JACKET (PLEAT BACK) OLIVE HAMSTERLEY SILK VELVET

WATERLOO JACKET (PLEAT BACK) OLIVE
HAMSTERLEY SILK VELVET

MARIE DRESS ACORN CONNAUGHT SILK

MARIE DRESS ACORN
CONNAUGHT SILK

The most widely watched race of the season, the Grand National is steeped in history. 2021will be an especially important year as Tiger Roll bids to become the first horse to win three Grand Nationals in succession (after becoming the first horse to win two on the bounce). Ladies Day at Aintree is on the Friday, but all eyes turn to the key race on the Saturday. While there is no official dress code to speak of, it's advisable to dress up and make the most of the occasion. Lounge suits, while smart, always feel a little corporate at Aintree so we would suggest opting for separates instead. For ladies, the weather in Liverpool will likely dictate your wardrobe plans so if you're travelling, ensure you take with you a couple of different options.


The Boat Race (4th April)

RUST VELVET COTTON NEHRU JACKET

RUST VELVET COTTON
NEHRU JACKET

RACING GREEN PENTON CORD COTTON WINDSOR TROUSER

RACING GREEN PENTON CORD
COTTON WINDSOR TROUSER


Before Cheltenham became a fixture, The Boat Race typically heralded the start of The Season. The annual rowing contest between crews from Oxford and Cambridge universities starts in Putney and finishes in Mortlake, giving spectators plenty of opportunities to find a gap on the banks of the Thames to watch the crews glide by. It's the perfect opportunity to gather your friends together and pitch up with a chilled bottle or two, then slide back into Putney for dinner at the River Cafe. Book ahead well in advance. 



Badminton Horse Trials (6th May – 10th May)

We're back in the Cotswolds for the Badminton Horse Trials, the world’s top three day event. It's a must for equestrian fans as the world's top eventers go head to head. The excellent shopping village is a dream too which a huge number of countryside brands displaying their wares. While there is no dress code, we'd recommend wrapping up warm in typically country attire. For gents, think lined tweed coats layered on top of tweed sports coats while the ladies can also follow suit with tailored tweeds. At the time of writing, the organisers are predicting that the event will happen 'behind closed doors' but are being flexible should restrictions lift so watch this space.


Glyndebourne (20th May –29th August)

SWING COAT ROYAL BLUE THETFORD SILK VELVET

SWING COAT ROYAL BLUE
THETFORD SILK VELVET

SERENA CIRCLE DRESS MIDNIGHT SILK GEORGETTE

SERENA CIRCLE DRESS
MIDNIGHT SILK GEORGETTE


Opera lovers cannot and do not miss Glyndebourne! The famous opera house in East Sussex has hosted the opera festival ever since 1934 and remains the premier operatic event of the calendar. Tickets are exceedingly hard to come by (public booking opens in March), but if you do manage to find yourselves there, it's worth getting dressed up for. Glyndebourne founder John Christie always impressed upon guests his preference for formalwear in respect of the performers and we would thoroughly agree with him (although 'contemporary fashions' are now also encouraged). For men, it's a chance to be flamboyant with black tie.  Equally, ladies should think glamour and sophistication when deciding upon their outfit. Don't forget a shawl for the cooler days and a cushion for your derriere.



Chelsea Flower Show (18th – 23rd May)

OZCAN FIT AND FLARE DRESS PINK PISA SILK SATIN

OZCAN FIT AND FLARE DRESS
PINK PISA SILK SATIN

LOUISE DRESS NAVY DAVENPORT SILK DEVORE CHIFFON

LOUISE DRESS NAVY DAVENPORT
SILK DEVORE CHIFFON

A coming together of horticulture and haute couture - well, almost. Certainly there's plenty of flora and fauna potted around the world's most famous flower show, but there's also no shortage of blooming fashions and celebrity onlookers. It's a wonderful day out, not least because of the garden inspiration but also because of the many champagne bars that now populate the event. Increasingly glamorous year upon year, for ladies we would recommend going bold with floral motif dresses and jackets, while gents can take a more laid-back approach with smart-casual summer linens and loafers.


The Investec Derby (4th-5th June)

CHARCOAL SHAFTESBURY CASHMERE WOOL MORNING COAT

CHARCOAL SHAFTESBURY
CASHMERE WOOL
MORNING COAT

GREY WESTMINSTER STRIPE WOOL HIGH WAISTED FLAT FRONT TROUSER

GREY WESTMINSTER STRIPE
WOOL HIGH WAISTED
FLAT FRONT TROUSER

Britain's richest horse race and one of the five classics, the Epsom Derby is the highlight of the flat racing season. The first Derby was run in 1780 with prize money of £1,065 15s, whereas in this day and age, the winning owner is likely to walk away with £850,000. With such a prestigious race comes a relatively strict dress code, especially on Derby day itself where guests in the Queen's stand are required to wear formalwear much like they would in the Royal Enclosure at Royal Ascot. Hence for gents that means morning dress, while for ladies formal day wear is required, which can include a formal day dress or a tailored trouser suit, with a hat or substantial fascinator.


Chestertons Polo in the Park (11th-13th June)



One of the first social events of the polo season, Polo in the Park takes place in Hurlingham Park. Although there's plenty of serious polo to be played across the three days, Sunday is the day to party with Mahiki hosting a boozy Sunday session (you'd do well to keep Monday free for recovery). Head straight to the Champagne Lanson Garden or Mahiki Bar where you can take in all of the action with a cold glass of something in your hand.As for the dress code, linen suiting and a Panama hat is a cool combination for gents, while ladies have free reign when it comes to summer dresses.


Fever-Tree Championships at Queen’s Club (15th – 21st June)



More than just a Wimbledon warm-up, Queen's has become a bona fide grass court tournament all of itself. With what are probably the best grass courts in the world, you can expect to see the very highest standard of tennis. With intimate courts and a convivial atmosphere, Queen's is a wonderful day out for tennis enthusiasts. The isn't a dress code so to speak, but keep it classy.


Royal Ascot (15th -19th June)

BLACK FELT FUR CHRISTYS TOP HAT

BLACK FELT FUR
CHRISTYS TOP HAT

BLACK SEATON CASHMERE WOOL MORNING COAT

BLACK SEATON CASHMERE
WOOL MORNING COAT

BLACK HOUNDSTOOTH WOOL HIGH WAISTED FLAT FRONT TROUSER

BLACK HOUNDSTOOTH WOOL
HIGH WAISTED FLAT
FRONT TROUSER

The five-day Royal Ascot meet has now been a fixture in the sporting calendar for just over three centuries, and for many of those years it has been associated with formal dressing. It was the dandy Beau Brummell who instigated the need for gentlemen to wear morning dress in the Royal Enclosure and that has never changed. This year, Favourbrook is an official licensee of Royal Ascot and we've designed a very special capsule collection for the occasion which will be released early next year. Watch this space.



Wimbledon (28th June – 11th July)



The oldest, most prestigious tennis tournament in the world needs no introduction, so we will save our figurative breath. Cancelled in 2020 due to the coronavirus, it remains to be seen who the top contenders will be in 2021. Will the shake-up produce a fantasy winner from leftfield or will the the same old top five battle it out yet again? Time will tell. What we do know for sure is that it's a wonderful occasion to get dressed up for, even if you're just planning to kick back on Henman Hill with a bottle of bubbles and a few punnets of strawberries. Dress for the weather is our top piece of sartorial advice. Hot days are amplified on the main courts so a good hat is advisable. Gents would do well to keep to a palette of pastel linen tailoring while ladies should opt for lightweight cotton, linen and chiffon dress styles, big sunglasses and plenty of suncream..


Henley Royal Regatta (29th June - 4th July)

NANCY DRESS GREEN HEARTWOOD SILK DEVORE CHIFFON

NANCY DRESS GREEN
HEARTWOOD SILK
DEVORE CHIFFON

SERENA CIRCLE DRESS NAVY BLOMFEILD SILK CHIFFON

SERENA CIRCLE DRESS
NAVY BLOMFEILD
SILK CHIFFON

BELLA DRESS BLACK BRIERLEY SILK SATIN

BELLA DRESS BLACK
BRIERLEY SILK SATIN

The famous five-day rowing regatta at Henley-on-Thames plays host to an international crowd, world-class crews, Olympic champions and more Pimms than you can shake a cucumber at. If you intend to picnic on the riverbanks as the action unfolds on the water, then think about a lightweight summer ensemble. However, dress codes do apply in ticketed areas, especially in the Stewards’ Enclosure and Leander Club, where men wear suits or rowing blazers, and women are not permitted to wear trousers (skirts should fall below the knee to be safe) but are encouraged to wear hats.


Gold Cup for the British Polo Open (17th July)



One of the top three polo tournaments in the world alongside the US and Argentine Opens, the Kingpower Gold Cup sees the very best players in the world battle it out on the South Downs National Park. While the chukkas are extremely competitive, the atmosphere in the crowd is relaxed and provides a great day out for families (a luxury retail village and plenty of food and drink stands certainly helps pass the time between chukkas). The dress code is smart casual although no shorts are permitted in the Members’ Enclosure.


Qatar Goodwood Festival (29th July – 31st July)



Glorious Goodwood is one of our favourite events of the season. Of all the race meets on the calendar, Goodwood is always a vibrant, colourful crowd and a wonderful event to wear your summery finery. In the Richmond Enclosure (which is the smartest of the three enclosures) morning dress is not necessary but gentlemen are required to wear a jacket accompanied by a tie, cravat or polo-neck sweater. According to the official dress code "Ladies are encouraged to dress stylishly but with a relaxed feel." Think floaty dresses and blousons.

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