Best Dressed: Submission Guide

Best Dressed: Submission Guide

Fashions on the Field is not just a competition; it’s a celebration of fashion and tradition. Join us in honouring the heritage of racewear while showcasing your own modern twist on classic elegance.

Fashions on the Field 19 June 2024

It's time to prepare your 2024 Best Dressed Entry!

Here are some tips to increase your chances of catching the judges eye!

  1. Plan out what you would like to highlight about your outfit and what you are going to say in your submission form. Stories and personal touches are a great way to stand out amongst the crowd!
  2. Well-executed photos that are clear and showcase all aspects of your outfit - check out the photo submission guide below to see our recommendation.
  3. Ensure you have read the definition, entry eligibility and judging criteria for the 2024 Best Dressed Competition - you can find all this information below. Don't miss any critical details, to ensure you are eligible!

Photo submission guide

The submission form asks for three portrait photos. We recommend the following: 

  1. Medium / close up to show the main details of your outfit
  2. Full length photo to encompass the entire outfit, leave some clear space around the border to ensure you don't cut off your millinery and shoes
  3. Additional close up, focusing on your accessories, shoes and the more minute details

Use the below examples as a creative guide to demonstrate the do's and don'ts when taking your entry photos.

Medium / close up shot

Full length shot - make sure your millinery and shoes are not cropped

Additional close up, focusing on your accessories

What's the definition of Best Dressed?

Best Dressed is defined as a well-considered special occasion race day outfit, but not a suit, styled by you to be worn to the 2024 Melbourne Cup Carnival. To be complete the look, the outfit must also showcase millinery and complementary accessories like jewellery, shoes, bag and gloves. Borrowing from current fashion trends to reflect your own individual style and appropriateness for a day at the Melbourne Cup Carnival.

What is the entry eligibility for Best Dressed?

To be eligible to enter the 2024 Best Dressed Competition, you must fulfil and agree to abide by the criteria specified in the Competition Terms and Conditions, which includes (but is not limited to) the following: 

  • Must be 18 years of age or more as at the day of final judging, Thursday 7 November 2024
  • No items in the outfit are permitted to promote commercially a brand, store or designer
  • Entrants must not be dressed by or styled by a designer or milliner
  • Must not receive any compensation from a third party for participating in this competition
  • Must not be 2023 winner of the Best Dressed or Best Suited Competition
  • Must not enter the 2024 Melbourne Cup Carnival Fashions on the Field Millinery Award and/or Emerging Designer Award competitions as a milliner or a designer
  • Must not be a current or previous employee or representative of the promoter
  • Entrants are not permitted to alter or add to their design in any way from the beginning until the end of the competition
  • Physical attendance will be required for the successful Finalists
  • Unless otherwise stated, all prizes awarded to the entrant must remain the property of the entrant and are not transferable, exchangeable or redeemable for cash
  • Eligibility of submitted images is to be determined at the promoter's discretion. For the avoidance of doubt, images from any separate competition will not be accepted.

How do the judges decide who is a finalist?

Our judges consider the following criteria when selecting finalists: 

  • The originality of the outfit - make the outfit your own and show us how your ensemble expresses your personality!
  • The appropriateness of the outfit for the Fashions on the Field Competition – Best Dressed, at the 2024 Melbourne Cup Carnival.
  • Suitability of the outfit for a daytime, race day event – remember you are styling an outfit for a day at the races!
  • The understanding and display of style, fashion trends and individuality - use inspiration from current trends to accentuate your own individuality!
  • Use of millinery including hats, fascinators, head bands, tiaras, flower laurels, hair scarves.
  • Attention to detail, including accessories: ties, pocket squares, jewellery, bag and shoes.
  • Grooming and deportment - hair, make-up and grooming can tie your entry together. 
  • How the entire outfit is complementary and fits together - make sure all elements of you outfit work together.
  • National Dress will be accepted if the above selection criteria is met. 


No, you do not need to be a resident of Australia to enter the competition. The competition is open to international entrants via the digital platform or on course during the 2024 Melbourne Cup Carnival. 

By entering the competition, the entrant acknowledges the Terms are governed by the laws of Victoria, Australia.  Each Entrant submits to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts exercising jurisdiction there in connection with matters concerning these Terms and waives any rights to claim that those courts are an inconvenient forum. 

Category Clarification

The combination of jacket and shorts falls under the definition of Best Suited where the jacket and shorts are made of the same or co-ordinated fabric and are designed to be worn together. 

Best Suited: from the Terms and Conditions for the Best Suited Competition “For the purpose of the Competition, Best Suited is defined as a set of outer clothes made of the same or co-ordinated fabric and designed to be worn together, typically consisting of jacket and trousers or a jacket and skirt”) 

Best Dressed. Best Suited typically requires a jacket, per clause 7 of Terms and Conditions for both categories.

Yes, you can enter different outfits in different competitions. However, you cannot enter the same outfit into both Best Dressed and Best Suited in the Digital Competition. It is important to note, you will be judged according to the criteria of competition you enter. 

Digital Competition

You can submit up to four outfits in each digital category and compete on-course in one competition per day. However, you can only be a finalist in one competition, per outfit. For example, if you become a finalist in the Best Dressed Digital competition, you will not be eligible to be an entrant in the Best Suited Digital Competition wearing the same outfit.

We recommend no more than 50 words, and this is optional.

This is up to the discretion of the entrant; however, we see this as an opportunity to highlight the outfit.

On-Course Competition

Details on this will be available ahead of Melbourne Cup Carnival and will be published on our Melbourne Cup Carnival Fashions on the Field website.

For Best Dressed and Best Suited there will be three opportunities during Melbourne Cup Carnival: Penfolds Victoria Derby Day, Lexus Melbourne Cup Day and VRC Oaks Day. 

Full Terms and Conditions to be announced.


The top three Australian finalists and the top International finalist for both Best Dressed and Best Suited will win a trip to Cup Week to compete in the final on VRC Oaks Day, Thursday 7 November 2024.