How to Spice up Your Suit – Part 2

Now you have your shirt and tie sorted (see Part 1), it’s time to look at the other accessories:


Whatever the weather, these are a must for the Flat racing season. Sporting a pair of sunglasses shows you are attending an outdoor event for leisure and not a business conference for work. But make sure you choose the right shape for your face.

Match up with the below face shapes:

Rectangular – a long face with straight sides. Forehead and jaw are similar widths. Angular jaw line.

Choose sunglasses that are slightly wider than the widest part of the face and sit low on the face. This will visually shorten the length. Go for heavy frames and wide arms. Patterns – choose strong horizontal lines. Avoid shallow or rimless frames.

Best bet: Cirrus sunglasses by Dewerstone. In brown bamboo with the wood grain running in horizontal lines. Price £44.95 from Etsy.

Square – length of face is similar to the width. Features are angular with wide forehead and square jaw line. Cheekbones can be flat and cheeks plump.

Choose frames that are no wider than the widest part of the face with high sides to add length and narrow the sides. Patterns – heavy or contrasting vertical sides to the frames will help add the illusion of extra length. Go for rounded frames and aviator/pilot styles. Avoid square frames.

Best bet: Oval sunglasses by Oakley. Frame is in the on trend olive green. Price £120 from House of Fraser.

Round: face is of similar length and width with full cheeks, rounded chin and no angles.

Choose frames that are wider than they are deep – however they must not be wider than the widest part of the face. The arms should be high set to lengthen the face. Go for rectangular frames with a slight curve. Avoid round frames which will only accentuate the roundness of the face.

Best bet: Grey Rectangle 009341 glasses by Oakley. Price £150 from House of Fraser.

Heart – has a wider forehead and high cheekbones tapering to a narrower chin and jaw.

Choose frames that are fuller at the bottom than the top and have low set arms. Patterns – have a stronger colour at the bottom than the top. It is difficult to find frames with fuller bottoms so go for thin, light coloured or rimless frames in an oval shape. Aviators are also a good shape as they angle downwards to give more width to the bottom half of the face. Avoid shapes with heavy top frames as these will draw the eye to the width of the forehead.

Best bet: Ray Ban Green Mirror Blue Pilot sunglasses. Show off your personality and choose bright coloured lenses. This will make up for not being able to wear thicker frames. Price £143 from House of Fraser.

Pear/Triangle – the jaw line is wider than forehead (opposite to Heart)

Choose frames with a heavier well defined top i.e. heavier part of frame or frameless at the bottom. Ensure width is slightly wider than the jaw line. Pattern – stronger colour on the top. Go for clubmaster styles and pilot aviators with a brow bar top to broaden the jaw. Avoid heavy frame at the bottom and low-set arms which will bring the eye downwards to the jaw line.

 Best bet: Paul Ven Fox Clubmaster ICE wooden sunglasses. Price £44.99 from Etsy.

Diamond – narrow forehead with wide cheekbones and a narrow jaw line.

Choose frames that are deeper than they are wide. They should not be any wider than your cheeks. Go for oval or rimless frames. Avoid wide frames and thick heavy arms.

Best bet: Lennon sunglasses by Pretty Green. Price was £90, now £75 from House of Fraser.

Oblong – a longer oval shape.

Here size matters. Go for larger frames to shorten the face length, but don’t extend beyond the widest part of the face (or the face will look longer and thinner). Go for square such as wayfarers, rectangles or aviator tear-drop shape; any style as long as it is large. Avoid small and narrow frames.

Best bet: Wooden wayfarer sunglasses by Parkville. In teak. Price £70 from Etsy.

Oval – widest at the temple with softly curved jaw line.

Lucky you – most styles will suit. So go for the on trend styles and mix them up with interesting frames, but go steady with bright colours! Look instead for interesting details and textures and you’re sure to find a winner.

Best bet: The Witcombe by Refractoptics has the classic and loved wayfarer style but with a white tortoise acetate frame with ebony wood temples. Also available in normal tortoise shell and black. Price £35 from Etsy.


A Panama hat will work with most outfits and at most summer racing festivals, but do not wear it before or at the Guineas Festival. Better matched to a grey suit is a darker coloured trilby or fedora – look for a straw trilby to save overheating, and consider navy, brown or dark camel hues.

Do not be tempted to wear a hat the same colour as your suit – it should contrast but be of a similar tone. Tread carefully with coloured hat bands: weigh up how much other colour you have in your outfit first and only accept a plain hatband in a self- or contrasting colour – avoid patterned ones. Top hats are only to be worn with morning suits, and flat caps are only for tweed suits.

Marks and Spencer has a range of Panama and summer trilby hats including this Handwoven Panama Hat, £49.50.


The transition from spring to summer or summer to autumn is not always cut and dried. What do you wear when one day it could be warm and sunny and the next cold and rainy? We turn to the lightweight mac. The simple loose fit of the mac fits perfectly over suits or blazers without crushing them. Go for shorter than knee length so that the mac doesn’t dominate your sartorial look.

This year Pantone has voted Green as THE colour for 2017. Outerwear is the easiest way to wear green especially khaki and military green which have always been a hit with men’s clothing, and are your safest bet in the green spectrum.

New & Lingwood’s Contrast Double Faced Raincoat is a great option for racedays. The classic raincoat has been given a sharp twist with its contrast lining. Tailored from double-faced, water-resistant Italian cotton, it is available in four colour contrast combinations: royal blue/lime, lime/royal blue, orange/navy and navy/orange. The internal pocket is wide enough to store the latest large mobile phones and is buttoned for added security. Price 795.


Black is the obvious choice but worn with a navy or grey suit it can tend to look like office wear. Brown and tan are more relaxed colours whilst still looking smart. How formal is all in the style of the shoe.

Synonymous with country life in the past, the brogue has taken a step into city life. That said don’t opt for the chunky full brogue, go for the more refined Oxford half brogue. A semi or half brogue has fewer perforations creating a sleeker look.

Russell & Bromley’s Milano is a semi brogue in chestnut calf leather. Price was £195, now £145.

The monkstrap shoe offers an unusual dapper alternative to the more popular Oxford and Derby styles.

Try Dune’s Putney in tan. Price £100 from House of Fraser.


At the races you’ll need to tuck your shirt into your trousers, but your jacket will be open, so a belt is an essential component to bring your outfit together and formalise your look. You should aim for a minimalist and understated leather belt in black or brown, depending on the colour of your shoes. Black belts should be worn with black shoes and a brown belt with brown shoes. This is a sartorial rule never to be broken.

However for a day at the races the shade of brown does not have to be an exact match, you can be more tonal e.g. lighter brown belt with darker tan shoes. Try this handmade genuine leather brown belt by Leather Worldstore, £52 on Etsy.

For black it has to be black with black so add a stylish interest by mixing the texture of the leather e.g. smooth black calf leather shoes with this Crocodile Embossed Calfskin Leather Belt Hand-Painted Black by Paul Parkman, £147.63 on Etsy.

For further racing fashion tips, plus advice for men, which hat to choose for your face shape, and summer make-up suggestions, see our Summer  Racing Fashion Guide 2017.

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