On Saturday, I was invited by Ellie from Unique Love Style to join her to a trip to Nottingham Racecourse for Vintage Race Day. I’d never been to the horse-racing before, but I am a fan of all things vintage so I accepted (and started planning my outfit). I’ve only met Ellie quite recently through blogging events, but it soon became clear that we had a lot in common.
I chose to wear a white and pink floral Lindy Bop dress which was generously donated to my by my sister. It was the first time I’d worn it and I loved it. Breaking my usual “no hat” rule, I wore a white sun hat to try and oomph up the style for my day at the races. Stupidly I completely forgot to take a photo of my outfit, so you’ll have to take my word that I looked great!
I picked Ellie up and we drove into Nottingham. The Racecourse offers free parking and there’s plenty of it, which is always a relief. Event entry cost just £10. There was the option to pre-buy a premier ticket for £15, but after seeing the Premier enclosure I was glad I hadn’t bothered. Everything I wanted to see/do was in the general section so I didn’t feel I’d missed out on anything.
On entering the racecourse, there was a number of food and drinks stalls, old fashioned carnival games and a marquee hosting a hair and beauty stall, a vintage photo booth and live entertainment. After a little explore we also stumbled across some stalls selling vintage clothes, accessories and knick-knacks as well as a display of vintage cars (including a very cute pink Cadillac).
First stop was the cute red Pimms and Prosecco truck. I chose a refreshing Pimms (just a small one) while Ellie opted for bubbly Prosecco. I also decided to check out the Deli Ham Pizza from Wood Fired pizza stand. It was absolutely delicious, definitely some of the best pizza I’ve eaten in a LONG time and it was cooked so quickly!
After a quick bite to eat we were both eager to catch some of the vintage entertainment. Red and Ginger, a vintage dance duo were giving a bit of a masterclass in Lindy Hop and Swing dancing. There were lots of people joining in and it looked like they were having A LOT of fun learning.
Later, Rose Devine, a vintage singer took to the stage to perform. She had a lovely, vintage sound and sang a great variety of songs from classic swing music, through to the modern day. Ellie and I particularly enjoyed the Caro Emerald set as we’re both big fans.
There was just time to grab coffee and freshly-made doughnuts before the “Best-Dressed Competition”. Ellie had signed up so I stood by to cheer her on. Sadly, I couldn’t get many photos but I did get this quick (quite blurry) snapshot of her strutting her stuff. I quite like it – I’m calling it “arty”.
There were about 20 competitors, both male and female, showing off their vintage fashions. When the awards were announced Ellie took second place, which was amazing (even if I thought she was robbed of first!) Most importantly, it was a lot of fun, hopefully for both spectators and the contestants.
After the competition, a rock and roll band called “Class of ’58” came on stage to play a few tunes. All of the band members are from the same family – mum, dad and two sons, which I thought was so adorable. They played some great, up-tempo music so we decided to show off our moves on the dance floor for a while. I do love to dance!
At last, it was time to go home. Ironically, although we did watch a couple of the races, we didn’t place a single bet! To be honest, I found the whole idea a bit intimidating as there were lots of people who clearly knew what they were doing and I didn’t have a clue. Maybe if I’d been there with someone who knew the terminology etc I may have been tempted to have a little flutter, but as it was at least I didn’t lose any money!
Overall, I had a fantastic afternoon at the Vintage Race Day and would certainly go back in the future. In September, the organisers are hosting a whole Vintage Carnival which I definitely plan on attending. It looks like a great day out, with so much to do. It was fun to be dressed up in our finery and we even got stopped by people wanting to take photographs. I felt like a celebrity.
I promise not to let it get to my head!