You know how different race days often have a theme? Themes like black and white, a touch of metallic, or dressing for a decade?

Well, I’ve a got a new favourite race theme: Embellishment.

It was this year’s theme for the Doomben 10,000 Day and I was in embellishment heaven. I was surrounded by sequinned, bedazzled, jewelled and adorned extravagance.

As someone who loves to bead and embellish, I had a lot of fun putting together my outfit, but not without a few hiccups and some trial and error along the way. In the end it all came together and I was lucky enough to take home the winning sash :)

Gold blue embellished race wear dress

In this post I’m going to share with you how I pulled together my winning outfit and also show you some of the other stand out designs that you really need to see. Trust me.

10 Days Before Doomben 10,000 Day

Ten days before the big day I was scrolling through ASOS looking at 90+ pages of dresses when all of a sudden I stumbled across this sequinny, shimmery tulle dream.

Asos sequin shimmer tulle dress

Image credit: ASOS

My favourite thing ever is sequins and beads. So, although I hadn’t necessarily decided I was going to attend the race day, once I discovered the theme for the competition was ‘embellishment’, I just had to attend!

I promptly ordered the ASOS dress, even though they were sold out of my size and I had to purchase a dress two sizes up (and at a slightly higher price than I wanted to pay).

Quietly proud of myself, I thought, look at you go, the race isn’t for two weeks and you’ve got a dress!

Being early for things has never been my strong point.  But making an early start turned out to be the key element in this case.

I knew I’d have to make some alterations, as it was still quite a summery dress. I was thinking a new top, with sleeves to go over it, and maybe an underlay in a winter tone.

The Embellished Dress Arrives … and Returns

5 days later the dress arrived. It was beautiful, but did nothing for me. And it was way too big.

Asos sequin shimmer tulle dress

Excuse the big white lump and ugly socks.

Still, I’m no quitter, so the next day I made a quick trip to Spotlight. Dress in hand, I perused all the isles and purchased some silver fabric.

Spotlight silver race wear fabric

I spent a few hours that night with my friend Tanya (who happens to be studying design- did I hit the jackpot, or what?).

After playing around with different options, draping the fabric over the top of the dress, wearing different belts…nothing worked.

Spotlight silver fabric sequin tulle dress

It was a lost cause. The decision to ditch was made.

Very important lesson ladies, if it’s not working- let it go. (Also apply this rule to men).

Side Note: ASOS does free returns which meant I printed off a returns label from the ASOS website, stuck it to a bag and took the dress back to the post office (free of charge!!) and you get a full refund a week later!! Makes online shopping stress free, just how I like it!

Treasure Hunting in the Recesses of my Closet

Whilst playing around with ideas, I pulled out some super old fabrics I had purchased years ago, but never used.

One in particular caught my eye. A bronzish gold, sequin fabric that I forgot I even had.

races outfit fabric

Drawn to it, I decided to find a skirt to match.

Now, you know how I always say to buy things on sale when you find them, even if you don’t have anything planned for it yet?

Case in point – I purchased this Alice McCall skirt three months ago, on sale for $100 (down from $300) and it’s been sitting patiently in my wardrobe ever since.

And wasn’t I happy to have it!!