Louisville, KY—The favorite expression around Churchill Downs during last Saturday’s 138th Annual Kentucky Derby was: “I’ll Have Another:”
“I’ll have another mint julep,” “I’ll have another hat,” and, of course, I’ll Have Another, the name of the winning horse.
While the fashion A-list may make the Costume Institute Gala a must-attend, for the horsey set, there’s nothing like the Derby: where high stakes betting goes hand in hand with often outré headwear.
And this year was no exception. The Kentucky Derby Museum store, which has a boutique right in Churchill Downs, was fully stocked with all things equestrian and stayed open for 12 hours both on Friday for the Oaks and Saturday for the Derby.
According to Leslie Correa of Dorfman Pacific, a major headwear supplier to the store, hat business was brisk to say the least—the store was filled to the brim with brims. “Lightweight hats made from organza and sinamay from our Scala Collection sold best due to the sunny 80-plus degree temperature and humidity,” Correa says. Despite being light as a feather, the styles with ruffles and roses sold best, especially in fuchsia, pink, purple and pastels, Correa said.
‘I’ll Have Another Hat,’ Too
Fascinators also sold well, Correa added, noting that the most popular styles were large flower versions that sat either on the left or right side of the face—not on top. “Fascinators with side interests are most flattering for most face shapes and hair styles.”
That is, for women who were buying hats to wear at Churchill Downs. Most of the hard-core horsey set (aka “mink and manure” set) already had their hats and outfits planned out way in advance.
“These are women who wear hats all year long, so even if they came with hats at the Derby, they buy for other outfits and other races, too,” Correa said.
The latest fashions were also on the minds of the folks at Longines, once again official timekeeper of the Kentucky Derby. Longines captured the winning time as I’ll Have Another charged ahead of favorite Bodemeister to win the roses by 1.5 lengths. The record crowd of 165,307 roared their approval—yelling even loader were those who had placed bets on I’ll Have Another at 15 to 1 odds.
Following the presentation of the trophy, Longines gave I’ll Have Another’s trainer Doug O’Neill, jockey Mario Gutierrez, owners J. Paul Reddam and Zillah Reddam their Longines Saint-Imier automatic mechanical chronographs.