The best dresses for Ascot (and we've found the perfect fascinators to match)

Get ready for the races!

Laura Sutcliffe

Royal Ascot is fast approaching and if you are off to the races – you need to get your outfit sorted, ASAP. The show runs from 19-23 June 2018 and is an event which is measured in style above all – it's occasion dressing at its finest. The dress code is rather strict – there are certain rules you need to follow – this isn't a day out to flash the flesh; it is royal ascot after all. First of all – you NEED to wear a fascinator or hat and if you are present in the royal enclosure, you will need to ensure your headpiece measures at least four inches in diameter across your head. Whether you want a lovely striped dress, an ensemble which features colour blocking detail, if you are mad for polka dots or tend to reach for pastels, we have a dress – and a fascinator - to match.

Colour Blocking

Dress, £80, Closet London. Fascinator, £60, Accessorize

For ladies that enjoy bold colours and are directional with their wardrobes – a pop of colour is all you need to stand out when placing your bets. This stunning number from Closet London features a retro-style boat neck and full, bombastic skirt. The mix of fuchsia and deep purple totally reminds us of Carrie Bradshaw’s Oscar de la Renta dress in Sex and the City. Tie your hair back and add a matching fascinator with a smattering of feathers for that WOW factor.

Vibrant Florals

Dress, £135, Skeena S @ Very. Fascintor, £12, Dorothy Perkins

 

Florals + sunshine = perfection and this frock by Skeena ticks all our boxes. Not only is it cut in an uber-fashionable midi length, it boasts a defined waist and cape-style sleeves which will give you an enviable silhouette. And we just love the pansy print – blooming lovely!

Polka Dots

Dress, £46, Topshop. Hat, £195, Lock & Co. 

Remember Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman when she visited the races with Richard Gere? Our love affair with polka dots never really stopped after that iconic moment in film history. This bargain dress from Topshop will set you back just £46 so great if you are on a budget. The soft sand shade would flatter all skin tones. Team it with a boater hat – we are a little bit in love with this straw creation by Lock & Co.

Tulle

Dress, £285, Needle & Thread. Hat, £49, Debenhams 

A gal who enjoys a bit of froth and tulle would go wild for this exquisite design by Needle & Thread. We love the graduated layers and the stunning baby blue ribbon at the waist. You could easily leave your jewellery at home – the scallop shaped neckline does all the talking.

Lace

Dress, £129 and Fascinator, £49, both Coast

Lace never really had a huge fashion moment at Ascot – until The Duchess of Cambridge stepped out in a stunning lace number by Dolce & Gabbana in 2016. Lace is the best way to strike a balance between formal and trend-led and this pretty frock by Coast will give you that regal look.  

Metallic

Dress, £280, and fascinator, £110, Karen Millen

Shiny fabrics and sumptuous metallics give a glamorous edge to any ensemble. Not just for the evening either – try champagne colours for the daytime which look insanely chic with a tan. This pretty number by Karen Millen has a full-length pleated skirt and thin double strap detail which is impressively light for the races – particularly if it’s a hot day. If you are heading to the royal enclose, a cream blazer would amp it up perfectly.

Stripes 

Dress, £85.99, Own the Look. Fascinator, £16.00 Claire's

Who doesn't love a rainbow stripe? The cheerful trend isn't going anywhere and rightly so – not only does it pack a powerful punch but stripes are super slimming. This gorgeous technicolour number by Own the Look is perfect for girls who want to stand out whist drinking pimms. Team with a simple fascinator – a large one may be a little much with a dress so bold.

Yellow

Dress, £225, Jaeger. Fascinator, £65 J by Jasper Conran @ Debenhams 

Yellow is always a shade that comes into its own in the summer and this dress is the perfect way to bring sunshine to Ascot, even if it rains.  This stunning frock is by Jaeger and it features a full, bombastic skirt and a pretty oriental-style print. Wear with a simple fascinator and maybe a splash of red lipstick. Fabulous darling!

Gingham 

Dress, £555, Young British Designers - Eudon Choi. Fascinator, £50, J by Jasper Conran @ Debenhams 

Gingham is a huge trend this year and is totally taking over the fashion world right now. Miniature checks will give any outfit a summery feel and best of all, the traditional print is always in style every season without fail. This lightweight dress would look incredible with some chic wedges and a co-ordinating black hat.  

More on: