As spring racing ramps up, milliner Lisa Xu offers expert style advice for fashion-forward race-goers.
Lady of Leisure Millinery was created when owner Lisa Xu fell in love with hat-making as a creative outlet. The label has quickly garnered a dedicated following, enthusiastic about her fresh, modern designs.
The busy milliner is also a keen racegoer and fashion trend follower. Her creations have won numerous Fashions on the Field Awards in Millinery and Lady of the Day categories. We catch up with Lisa as she shares her style tips for this spring racing season.
What do you think are the key trends for this year's spring racing carnival?
Simple yet elegant headbands, and demure fascinators that are easy and comfortable to wear.
Your favourite celebrity racing carnival moment?
Meeting one of my idols, Philip Treacy and having him compliment my hat. He is an inventor and a true artist and I was in awe of his humility.
A must-have accessory for the racing season?
Comfortable heels. My main goal is to find heels that match my outfits and look great, and that I can last in all day. You can wear an extraordinary outfit but if you can't walk because you are in so much pain a few hours into the event, then your day is ruined! Look after your feet because more than likely you have more race days to attend!
What colours, textures and styles will we see for headwear this year?
A lot of metallic rose gold is huge this season.
Who inspires you?
Lynette Lim of Love Lotus, Louise MacDonald, Richard Nylon and of course Stephen Jones and Philip Treacy.
What is your most important style advice for first-time hat wearers?
Wear something that you are comfortable with. As much as I would love to see everyone's personality shine in their outfit, for the first time you have to feel comfortable within yourself to ensure that you enjoy your day.
What fashion mistakes can race-goers avoid?
Wearing sexy but super uncomfortable shoes! It is not worth it!
Do you have a favourite headpiece?
It is so hard to pick a favourite headpiece, especially because I make each by hand, and most have a lot of time invested into them. This season I would have to say my rose gold plated copper geometric piece (even though looking at it reminds me of how much my fingers hurt), is my favourite.
Will we see you at the races this year?
Definitely! I will be heading to all four major race days!
Lady of Leisure Millinery is stocked in a curated collection of high-end boutiques throughout Australia including Myer and The Eternal Hedonist
Image: Lisa Xu - http://ladyofleisuremillinery.com