A Gentleman’s Guide on How to Dress for Melbourne Cup + 10 Years of URBBANA

All the things you need to know about this year’s Melbourne Cup menswear trends plus URBBANA celebrates 10 years!

October 2019

Melbourne Cup

How to dress to impress for the upcoming race season can be challenging for even the savviest race-goers. To ensure your race-day style game remains en pointe, we sat down with Sam Abi, the man behind URBBANA, to talk about the track-side trends for this year’s Melbourne Cup and 10 years of URBBANA.

What are the menswear trends for this year’s Melbourne Cup?

In general, Spring Racing Season is a time for vibrant colours, light fabric suits like light wool, linen and cotton and straw hats. Stay away from synthetic materials!  A tie is a must but if you’re feeling creative, add a matching or a contrasting vest for an extra touch. Have fun with your selection of vest and tie but ensure that it complements your whole outfit. Wearing your typical black or dark navy business suit to the spring racing carnival would see you missing out on the essence of dressing up for such an occasion and showing your flamboyant side.

What is the must have accessory for race day?

A pocket square is a must to lift your outfit to the occasion. However, if you don’t have pocket squares on hand, a lapel flower is a fun alternative. Melbourne Cup Carnival has four big days and four different lapel flowers. It’s great fun to follow each race day official flower/colour. If you can’t find an artificial flower lapel pin, simply get a fresh flower and use a pin to attach it to your suit lapel. Here is your race day colours guide:

Melbourne Cup Day: Yellow

Stokes Day: Red

Derby Day: Cornflower blue

Oaks Day: Pink

What are your top tips for being race ready?

  1. Well-tailored suit
  2. Natural fabric
  3. Polished shoes
  4. Accessories to complement all the above.

10 Years Of URBBANA

What are some of your highlights from the last 10 years of URBBANA?

  1. Opening the boutique store at Portside Wharf was one of the best decisions I ever made.
  2. Our first participation in Mercedes-Benz Fashion Festival in 2011 was a milestone in the brand’s short history.
  3. Joining the high-end, luxury brand line up on Edward Street in the CBD exposed URBBANA to a whole new business client with sophisticated style and grew the brand

What was your inspiration for starting a menswear label? 

URBBANA started in 2009 and believe it or not, in the midst of the global financial crisis (GFC). I noticed a big compromise in quality manufacturing with many reputable brands, which had to be made for them to meet the demand for lower prices during the GFC. Although I was aware many consumers were okay with buying garments because of the label, I believed there was still a huge demand from consumers that wanted to pay for quality.

What is your most popular product at URBBANA?

I can’t pin point only one product, but I can say 10 years ago, shirts were our main product followed by shoes and suits. We have large collections of these three products in both our boutiques.

What do you think some of the upcoming trends are going to be? 

Trends come and go quickly in fast fashion scenes; at Urbbana we focus more on style when designing a collection. Our style is classic with a twist. We might adapt a new pattern or print for a couple of years to be “#urbbanastyle”. In general, in the last couple of years we’ve been seeing a rise in the popularity of stripe suits and sneakers (even worn with suits sometimes!). Linen suits have also been popular and are predicted to be an essential part of a gentlemen’s wardrobes in the next year.

What advice would you give men just becoming interested in fashion and beginning to define their style? 

Dress the way you want to be addressed. You are better to own 15 good quality items in your wardrobe than 50 low quality unpractical items.

Ask yourself two questions.

  1. What do you want your clothes to say about you?
  2. How do you want your outfit to make you feel when you go to work, or to an event?

Don’t hesitate to ask for advice from the experts, find a good stylist or tailor who can enhance your style and take you up to a different level. Make your wardrobe work hard for you rather than spending time and money on garments you don’t wear often. Our exclusive Decorum by URBBANA styling sessions teach these lessons and are available to book. Visit https://www.urbbana.com.au/product-category/decorumbyurbbana/

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