Home' In The City : Canberra Style - Spring Summer 2012 Contents Canberra fashionistas Angela Menz
and Sarah Kelly are certainly used
to putting together a stylish outfit.
But they are not usually
requested to re-assemble exactly
the same creations again.
The style queens will have their
winning outfits from Melbourne's Fashions on the Field
competitions displayed in an exhibition celebrating 50
years at Flemington, at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Their glamorous racewear will appear at the National
Sports Museum in October.
Their efforts in being crowned fashion champions
of the prestigious event will also be forever revered as
they appear in a new commemorative book, Fashion and
Menz says it is quite exciting to be included in the
exhibition and to have her own page in the book, which
celebrates the creative looks, fashion icons and influential
designers in the event's history.
The Canberran style queen said it had been a "real
ride" since she won Fashions on the Field last year in
"To win on the day was really
amazing, it's one of those things ... it's
not something I guess that you could
really set as a goal to do, I was just lucky
on the day," Menz said.
In the past year she has been invited
to judge various Fashions on the Field
events around the nation, which
included a trip to Cairns last month.
"They flew me to Cairns and it was
high teas, cocktail parties, balls and
luncheons at the races, I think getting
to do things like that has been really
amazing and just not things that I would
have been able to do otherwise," she
"I've enjoyed judging actually and I think better than
anyone I really know what it's like to stand up in front of
the judges, and to be looked at, so I'm quite conscious
Menz has been taking part in Fashions on the Field
competitions -- in her own creations - since she won the
first one she entered in Queanbeyan almost 10 years ago.
With her dad's side of the family involved in horse
racing she had attended race days since she was quite
"I think dad was hoping I'd get into the horse side of
things and that was a fail, I like the fashion side, but now
I've been getting my dad into the fashion side," Menz said.
"I guess it's an escape from reality I think, going to the
races, dressing up like a madwoman for the day, that's a
lot of fun to me."
She said entering the competitions in outfits she had
created certainly added to the experience as it was her
own work that was being assessed.
"I think I'm probably the most extreme person in
terms of making everything certainly, but I guess it's nice
to know I can go to the races and not have my twin show
up," Menz said.
"The outfit that I actually wore and won in at
Flemington, the skirt I had started making the previous
year to wear to the races and I got really angry with it and
chucked it aside and revisited it a few months later and
that became my winning skirt.
"It was originally a failed project."
Thoroughbred Park's current Fashions on the Field MC
Sarah Kelly says she entered the prestigious competition
She said at the time there had been a lot of talk in the
media about women being represented in their natural
form so it was quite topical when a "42-year-old mother
of three" took the title.
Kelly said it was all about the look and trend on the
day -- and because she stood out from the other brightly-
"It had got to the point of
saturation, everyone was just big and
bright it was almost like the louder
you were the more attention you
would get," she said.
"I mean I was wearing black, it
sounds so dull, but it just cut such a
classic line. Obviously my hat was big;
a big hat's always fantastic."
After the win Thoroughbred Park
approached her to become the
Fashions on the Field MC at Canberra's
She said during the last three years
she had seen the event on Melbourne
Cup day grow and grow in the nation's capital.
More women are entering and have "stepped up to the
plate" wearing outstanding outfits.
"There definitely has to be some glamour attached,
but we say the word appropriate over and over again,
and I just think that means no bare shoulders, longer
hemlines, and statement headpieces and hats," Kelly
She says she is glad her win has given her the
opportunity to turn her fashion passion into work.
As well as her own fashion business Kelly writes for
a magazine and styles women for race days.
"It says so much about you, the whole creative side.
Fashion is just another element of art really at the end
of the day it is you giving an image of how you want to
portray yourself, it's almost like an artistic vision but
Style queens Angela Menz and Sarah Kelly are about to become
legends of the spring racing calendar. BY MEREDITH CLISBY
"I guess it's
an escape from
reality I think,
going to the races,
dressing up like a
madwoman for the
day, that's a lot of
fun to me."
Menz won the 2011
Myer Fashions on
the links between
Sarah Kelly's 2009
Myer Fashions on
the Field winning
outfit (left) is on
display at the
canberra style | SPRING/SUMMER 2012
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