Have the fashionable halls of hell frozen over? The times, could they really be a changing? If a major sartorial bombshell dropped earlier today is any indication, prepare to see your bacon grow wings.
At an intimate gathering ahead of the spring racing season, VRC Chairman Amanda Elliott announced that men will no longer be required to wear socks in either the Members Area or Birdcage enclosures at Flemington.
It's a massive coup for fashionable gents who, in past years, have lost plenty of sleep over the dreaded #anklegate as hemlines on pants continued to rise and their chance of getting into the Members Area and Birdcage disappeared with them.
Sock it to the man
But apparently that's in the past! Along with other outdated rules such as mandatory top hat and tails on Derby Day and designated female zones. It's now a time to relax and pull out your best Italian loafers and brogues that we know always looked better without socks.
"I wasn't aware we actually had a sock policy at the VRC," said Amanda Elliott.
"The idea was taken to the board a month ago and the board agreed we would change our policy on socks," she said.
A new era
It's a coup for Elliott who is not only the first female as Chairman of the VRC but has helped change a draconian law to fit with street style as we know it.
"Given its tradition and heritage the VRC hasn't made a decision like this in the past, but we now face a time where we need to move with them,"she says.
"I didn't realise there were so many men who didn't like to wear socks and now we're moving with the times and men don't need to wear them on the members enclosures or the birdcage as from this year."
The shoes have it
With the gentle spring breeze now caressing your ankle, extra attention to your choice in footwear will help keep your race day outfit looking suitably on-point.
Your go-to choice this year should be the loafer,and preferably in suede. Not only are they designed to be worn sans socks but they add a rakish touch to the formality of your suit. Without them you'll be left behind. Try to find those with a touch of embellishment and you'll be a FOTF favourite.
The double monk strap is also a popular choice, but the European loafer in summer suede will have the fashion world bowing at your feet.