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Christine A. Moore Reflects on Keeneland Breeders’ Cup

Christine A. Moore Reflects on Keeneland Breeders’ Cup: Fascinator and hat maker Christine A. Moore works a busy schedule while visiting Kentucky. Today, she spends her time at the upscale fashion store Rodes in Louisville. On Sunday, she takes her business to Keeneland on the gift shop side of the paddock, as the official milliner of the upcoming Breeders’ Cup on Oct. 30 and 31. She stopped for a few minutes to discuss what lies ahead.

Christine Moore Breeders' Cup 2015

Christine A. Moore takes her business to Keeneland on the gift shop side of the paddock, as the official milliner of the upcoming Breeders’ Cup on Oct. 30 and 31.
Photo: Reinier Macatangay

As someone who experienced the Breeders’ Cup in California and Kentucky, Moore knows how the experience differs in the “Bluegrass State.”

“They just have a different view of horse racing than in California,” Moore said. “This area is going to embrace it in a different way.”

But, there is an ironic twist to the event taking place in Kentucky.

“Because they have the Derby, fans do not feel they need to dress up for another race,” she explained. “Everyone coming from out of town is expecting you’re going to wear a hat or fascinator.”

Encouraging women to dress up and wear fancy headwear started at the first Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, when the founder wished to create a nicer environment for all attendees. Higher-class fashion tends to affect how others act, even those not in formal attire.

“People treat you better,” Moore said about dressing up at the racetrack. “Even those guys down and out, all of a sudden stand up a little straighter and open the door for me. You can see the difference.”

“They enjoy seeing people dress up. It puts a finer feeling to their day.”

Visitors to Moore’s website will find hats for both men and women. Of course, the ones for women take a touch longer to make because of the extra material. Crafting hats for men poses challenges too.

Breeders' Cup Christine Moore

The official Breeders’ Cup color is purple and Christine A. Moore has plenty to offer in the rich hue.
Photo: Reinier Macatangay

“The thing about men, is that you have to make it precise,” Moore said. “Everything has to be symmetrical and even, and that’s hard. For women, it’s complicated because there are more parts.”

What are the colors to think about when buying a hat for next week?

“Purple is definitely one,” she said, while acknowledging the official Breeders’ Cup color. “Cream, through the grays to black are probably the biggest trends right now.”

Surprisingly, Moore is behind in making her own headwear for the Breeders’ Cup.

“I haven’t made it yet, big surprise,” she revealed. “I usually make my hats in hotel rooms right before the race. … I’m going to wear a fascinator.”

When asked to give her favorite active horse, Moore hesitated to respond. She holds good relations with important people within the industry and does not want to upset them.

“I just made Joanne Zayat two hats for Breeders’ Cup. Of course, I want to see her in the winner’s circle,” Moore initially said. “Who doesn’t want to see the champion (American Pharoah) in there?”

She went on and admitted Beholder is one of her favorites too.

“I believe in girl power,” she added. “I want to see either one of them win.”

Moore looks forward to the first Breeders’ Cup held at Keeneland in Lexington.

“Once you go to Keeneland, you instantly know why you love it,” she said. “Keeneland is magical in a ‘you are in the heart of horse racing country’ kind of way.”

Keeneland and the Breeders’ Cup will offer plenty of magic next week. Visit Moore at Keeneland to discuss fascinators, hats or other fashion tips. After spending Saturday at Rodes, she travels to Keeneland tomorrow and plans to set up shop near the paddock every day of the week.

Read more about Moore and millinery at, or on the Breeders’ Cup website.

Visit and for more information on the Breeders’ Cup World Championships, including ticket information and city-wide events.