To organise a good FOTF is no mean feat… from sourcing prizes, to finding judges, to marketing and promoting the competition. Today I speak with Linke Mason from the Girly Girl Boutique in Echuca, about her involvement with this weekend’s upcoming fashions at the Echuca Cup Carnival.
EL: How did you come to be involved with running the Echuca FOTF?
LM: Shortly after we purchased Girly Girl, we explored the best ways to market our new business to the local trade. At the time, Girly Girl was mainly catering to the tourist market. Becoming involved with Echuca’s FOTF was just one of the ways that we thought to involve our business in the community. We both enjoy the excitement of planning and being involved in fashion events.
EL: What are you hoping to see on the FOTF stage style-wise?
LM: For the Echuca Cup Carnival this year we have included two categories for the ladies – Elegant Lady of the Day is for those with classic styling, grooming and deportment with all the FOTF styling expectations. Contemporary Lady of the Cay caters for those ladies who prefer to have a fashion edge, with individuality and flare. Entries for this category still have an expectation to follow FOTF styling, but in a more relaxed way. We hope that by including two completely different categories, this will open up the competition to anyone who wishes to enter and be in the running to win. We are also looking for a Stylish Young Lady who may encapsulate that of their older competitors, but are age appropriate. Stylish youth always has the cute factor. Aside from styling, it’s great to see them show their personality and confidence on stage. Stylish Gent is a new category which was in demand at Echuca’s last FOTF held on Melbourne Cup Day. The efforts and style of the men was outstanding, and we expect to see the same this time around. It’s great to see the men embrace the events criteria and get involved.
EL: Are there any trends you love or loath? What are your tips for embracing the Relaxed Racing vibe at the upcoming Echuca Cup races?
LM: We appreciate individual style and classic elegance, but also look for the well groomed ladies who know how to bring their look together. Confidence and deportment also play an important part of the stage, so we suggest that the contestants think about how they are going to present themselves.
FOTF in Echuca is a relatively casual affair and this sometimes means that you have some characters who turn up in less than tasteful outfits, with a plan to make fun of the event. Although this can be amusing for the spectators at times, this is not something we or the competitors would encourage. I wouldn’t say we loath it, but it isn’t respectful to those that have put in a lot of effort for the FOTF competition.
Our tips for those wanting to enter the ladies divisions would be – be yourself and bring your own sense of style and confidence. Remember that the way you present on the stage, is just as important as the effort you have put into finding the perfect outfit. Accessories such as handbags, gloves, shoes and headwear will all be part of the judging criteria, although in the Contemporary Lady of the day, this criteria is a little more relaxed, so you can leave your gloves at home.
EL: Tell me about the prizes and categories on offer next weekend and who will be judging?
LM: The categories are…
Elegant Lady of the Day ~ 18yrs+
Contemporary Lady of the Day ~ 18yrs+
Stylish Young Lady of the Day ~ 12-17yrs
Stylish Youth ~ 11yrs and under
Prizes are in excess of $1,000 in value and include prizes and vouchers from:
Girly Girl Boutique
Moama Bowling Club
Echuca Race Club
Shara Gillahan Melbourne
Linke Mason, Co-owner and Manager of Girly Girl Boutique
Brittany Kreskas, Girly Girl employee
Cassidy McGill, who recently placed 6th in the Miss Magnificent Pageant in America.
MC is Georgina Bish, a local singer/songwriter, also an employee at Girly Girl.
The Co-ordinator on the day is Wayne Mason, Co-owner and Manager of Girly Girl Boutique.
NB: All images from https://www.pinterest.com/girlygirlbo1230/race-day/