Starter's Orders! Get Ready for Royal Ascot 2024

Starter's Orders! Get Ready for Royal Ascot 2024

The highlight of the British season, Royal Ascot is a heady concoction of racing, glamour, indulgence, style and - if you happen to be in the Royal Enclosure - as much lobster and champagne as you can physically put away. There are, unofficially, two parade rings at Royal Ascot - the first is where the horses are led out for all to cast their eyes over, and the second is the Royal Enclosure, where the great and good host their own sort of parade, with the gents dressed in their top hats and morning coats and the ladies in their showpiece dresses, coats and creative headwear.

Favourbrook is once again, and proudly, the Official Menswear Licensee for the event, and we are delighted to present to you our new Royal Ascot Collection, a complete curation of race day formalwear that will ensure you are the best-dressed many in the Royal Enclosure.

 
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If you are planning to attend this year, then you need to be aware of a few things. The Royal Enclosure does of course politely impose certain sartorial caveats which we'll run through here. As per the Royal Ascot website:

"Gentlemen are kindly reminded that it is a requirement to wear either black, grey or navy morning dress which must include: A waistcoat and tie (no cravats or bow ties); A black or grey top hat; Black shoes worn with socks."

As you can see, the dress code is quite straightforward. Royal Enclosure attendees can choose a number of different morning coat/trouser combinations, all of which we meticulously create right here in London.

From the traditional configuration of black morning coat and cashmere stripe/herringbone trousers to a three-piece charcoal grey morning suit as preferred by HRH King Charles, Favourbrook has plenty to offer on the formalwear front.

 

The morning suit then is a fairly simple matter. We would advise booking an appointment by contacting our team at sales@favourbrook.com or menswear@favourbrook.com, or simply drop by our Pall Mall store.

Where some discretion is sometimes required is in the choice of waistcoat. Back to Royal Ascot's Dress Code for the Royal Enclosure:

"Novelty waistcoats and ties are not permitted. Discreet patterns and those of a patriotic nature (for example, a national flag) are acceptable."

 
 
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And how does one define a novelty waistcoat exactly?

"Novelty waistcoats usually feature slogans, phrases or promotional messaging, and cartoon imagery. Although these novelty designs are not permitted, discretely patterned waistcoats and those of a patriotic nature are acceptable."

As you can see, the Royal Enclosure is pretty straight down the line on what is and what is not acceptable when it comes to waistcoat designs. If a waistcoat makes you wince, hurries on a migraine, or brings you to tears, then you can probably take that to mean you shouldn't wear it. In fact, if your waistcoat choice gives you even the slightest modicum of doubt, then we would suggest you choose something different altogether. Confidence in your look is key.

 
 
 
 
 

The spirit of morning dress in the Royal Enclosure is not one of overt flamboyance or one-upmanship and never has been, going all the way back to Beau Brummell, who was largely responsible for making racegoers adopt the morning suit in the 1800s. Brummell, a close friend of the Prince Regent (the future King George IV), reportedly decreed that ‘men of elegance’ should wear ‘waisted black coats and white cravats with pantaloons’. Brummell was also very much of the opinion that great style should not necessarily be noticed, but rather acknowledged for its refinement by fellow discerning gents.

What all this leads us to say is that understatement is always preferable in the Royal Enclosure. If you want to turn heads, a hearty belly laugh is better than a gaudy belly covering. We would suggest opting for lighter pastel tones and mixing them between your waistcoat and pocket square. The great thing about pastels is that they all work well together so you'd be hard-pressed to get the combo wrong. Pinks, greens, blues, yellows - they're all mutually compatible and look very chic offset against a crisp white shirt. 

 

For the tie, we would suggest choosing a bolder, contrast colour to stand out against the other softer tones. This is because the contrast will better draw attention up to your face. By the same token, the tie is also the perfect bit of real estate to introduce some pattern, but keep it simple and classic - a polka dot or similar geometric arrangement will do nicely.

And there you have it. As you can see, it's really not that difficult to get right. If you are yet to be fitted for your morning suit, don't hesitate to get in touch. We already have a large volume of personal fittings booked in so we would advise you schedule an appointment at the nearest opportunity. Royal Ascot may still be a couple of months away, but time flies, and so do our supplies!

Shop The Royal Ascot Collection

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