Do you love a bit of glitz and glam? Sequins and glitter aren’t traditionally part of the race day dress code but that doesn’t mean bling is off limits completely. In fact a little bit of bling can go a long way if you do it right. A sparkly bag or pair of embellished shoes can look very classy. Shiny accessories could be the focus point of your outfit without detracting too much from the overall look if it’s done in moderation. Here’s some inspo to get you thinking….

embellish belt

Usually my eye is drawn to anything with a print so when I chose to wear this orange dress I had no idea how to style my millinery and accessories to suit it. I thought that an embellished belt would break up the solid colour and could tie in with the pattern on my shoes.  This belt is made from little leather flowers (which I shaped myself) and then tiny beaded flowers were added into the gaps. I even had some flowers left over to add into my headpiece.

embellish belt

Here’s how you can turn a sad old belt, that hasn’t been used for years, into a show stopping accessory for your next race day.

First of all find a clear space – away from little kid’s fingers. I lay everything out on a cutting mat so I can easily move it off the kitchen table when it’s dinner time. These are a few things you’ll need…

1 – Option #1: Cover an old belt with fabric – I’m making this belt for Derby Day. I glued down this piece of black fabric and once it’s finished I will cover the join on the back with a strip of ribbon. Don’t worry too much about this as no one will see it. You may need to work around a buckle depending on how your belt does up, cut and glue where needed.

Option #2: Draw around the belt using a fabric pen/pencil. Once it’s embellished you can then glue the fabric onto the belt. This means you don’t have to sew through the belt later on.


2 – Gather all your embellishments and play around with the placement. Experiment with size and shape to give your arrangement variety. Keep in mind where you will do the belt up and only embellish to that point. It will become too bulky and the embellishments will fall off.


3 – When you are happy with the look of your belt use a small blob of glue to tack down the larger embellishments. Don’t go crazy with a lot of glue because you may want to move items later.


4 – Once everything is reasonably secure you can start sewing! Items will pop off during the day if you don’t so make sure everything is sewn down. This is easier than it sounds. Tie a knot with the thread to begin. Then just sew through the middle of the first embellishment, up from the back of the belt and back down again. Pull the thread along the underside of the belt to the next item (use an awl to poke a hole through if the belt is thick). Repeat until everything has been secured with at least one stitch. Stop and start with knotting off as you need it. If there are any loose parts on the embellishments you can sew them down more or dab a small amount of glue to make them look neat.

And voila! You are ready to make a statement with your very own creation!


You can embellish a belt with anything you like. Beads, leather flowers, sequins, trims, lace or even parts from an old pair of earrings or a broken necklace. eBay is a great place to pick up pre-made crafty items and you never know what you’ll find at your local $2 shop. If you are a little more crafty jump online and find some tutorials for embroidery, beading or sequin flowers like these ones I found on Pinterest (click the pics to check out more).

If you do make something I’d love to see so please tag us @racewear_carousel or me @melissabarnes_1

Happy crafting!

Mel xxx