While Elf has been on stall rest, I’ve spent some on my non-riding time evaluating my gear. After realizing I had no real idea of what I needed, I called in the experts. Taylor Hall, co-founder of The Tried Equestrian, dropped in to share just what I needed to hold on to and how consignment can pay for new breeches!
One thing that’s fabulous about being an equestrian (as much as new brands and fads would like you to forget) is that equestrian style is truly timeless. Look back at a 1970’s Ralph Lauren photo. The looks are still relevant and familiar. Materials may have changed, the color plaid may have changed, but the general look and feel is still the same.
That’s how your wardrobe should be; classic, timeless, with maybe a few fun pieces thrown in here and there. It does not have to be sinkhole, victim to the latest trend. FYI we are NOT saying you shouldn’t get that fun pair of awesome, super techy breeches with the neon piping. If you want them, get them, we love fun stuff too! What we’re merely providing is a guide for the pieces you will need to always feel put together. Trust us, we love new stuff too…which is why we conveniently have a site to resell stuff when we don’t love it anymore 😉
The main issue with your wardrobe is FUNCTIONALITY! So many times we get wrapped up in the style aspect we forget this is a sport and our wardrobe picks must be comfortable for jumping, sitting trot, and picking hooves to name a few. Also, don’t get so caught up in the brand. Everyone is shaped differently and different brands work for different people. For example I find anything low-rise to be a huge problem. Even though it’s “In” it doesn’t work on my body type and I’m constantly tugging them up in lessons.
Here’s your essential Got To’s:
Our first must is a layering sweater. Perfect for schooling but also flawless over a show shirt. They’re a great middle layer when it’s really cold outside. Keep the colors basic and simple. You want it to be able to match nearly anything. If you’re looking to add a little flair consider getting one with an elbow patch.
Ariat Ultimo Sweater w/ Faux Suede Elbow Patch: $69.95 (we’ve seen them on sale!)
Medium Weight Coat
This is more important if you live in a colder area but let’s be real, when in 60 degree, cloudy weather, us West Coasters act like hypothermia is a real possibility. For this jacket, pick something that moves with you, you need to be able to ride in it. We also suggest something that cuts right at your hips (so you’re not sitting on top of it in the saddle) and no hoods. If you love the longer look on a jacket, look for one that unzips in the back and fits around your saddle. Also, consider reaching out to your barn to see if they have ever considered doing a barn jacket. Many times you can get better deals on a large order of custom barn jackets.
Asmar Rider Jacket – $238
I don’t know if anything screams equestrian chic like a great vest. They’re always a great piece to throw on for chillier morning lessons or to layer on while strolling the show grounds in between classes. We love something neutral that can match just about anything you would throw on.
Dublin Ladies Khloe Riding Vest: $79.00
Baker Classic Vest: $79.95
A Show Shirt
You can never go wrong with a crisp white shirt. As much as we love traditional we are more than ecstatic to see ratcatchers have disappeared and that the wrap collar is the new standard. We suggest picking something solid white with no pattern (a pattern you love now could date the shirt; we’ll also be doing a blog on how to clean all types of stains. Yellow armpit stains included, to keep your shirts lasting longer!) Most shirts now have some sort of inner lining on the collar, again we also recommend going with a simple stripe pattern in your favorite color.
Essex Classics Talent Yarn Show Shirt – $124.95
RJ Classics Essential Ladies Show Shirt – $59
A Schooling Shirt
As many options as there are (you can always mix up your wardrobe with the latest trends and sell them when you aren’t loving the styles anymore) we are going to keep it simple and stick to the basics that we think will be around for years to come. We are going to prioritize sun protection and comfort above all! We say yes to collars and long sleeves all year round.
EIS Solid Cool Shirt – $86
Callidae Practice Shirt – $110
The Nicer Clinic Shirt
Do you go to Clinics a lot or like to occasionally dress up for a lesson? Here are some options that are a little nicer for when you’re feeling fancy. Tip: your clinician is much more worried about your riding than how you’re dressed. As long as you’re tidy and presentable don’t spend too much time stressing over this. We again would like to point out this is a SPORT not a beauty competition.
Habit Play Shirt – Roughly $200 (We know, a little bit of a splurge, but they actually custom measure these to fit you perfectly. You also get to pick the color. Again we urge you to pick something fairly simple, we love the blue plaid.)
The Lesson Breech
We may be a yawn on this one but we think sticking to the classic tan is perfect. That way you will always have trusty back ups for shows (which is great in case you have an accidental OJ spill before you head out to a morning medal class). We suggest having enough pairs to cover the amount of days you ride in one week. If you want to switch up the color, we suggest sticking to basic, always in trend colors of black, navy or grey. There are so many brands out there and everything on! Do squats, kick your legs around, and touch your toes. Make sure they stay in place and are comfortable.
Horze Grand Prix Breech – $109.99
Devon-Aire Signature Classic Knee Patch Breech – $99.95
The Show Breech
Stay traditional and choose comfort. That’s all we have to say on this.
Tailored Sportsman Trophy Hunter Breech (White or Tan) – $189.99
Noble Outfitters Signature Breech – $149.99
A Show Jacket
These come in all different price ranges and cuts depending on the ring you primarily show in. We personally tend to favor more traditional materials of jackets because they hold up better over time and look more tailored. Everything on the market now has some sort of stretch which makes them easy to wear. Try everything on and become friends with your tailor! There are so many ways to take a jacket that fits pretty well to perfectly with just a few nips and tucks. Also, stay traditional on color, black or navy and avoid any fads if you’re planning to invest in a jacket for several years. (ie. Contrast piping, colored collars, bling, logos, etc.)
Rules To Live By:
- Your coat length should just dust your saddle when you sit down.
- Your sleeve should just go to your wrist when your arms are straight. That way when you bend your arm your shirt cuff will peek out.
- Don’t pick anything too tight around the waist. You shouldn’t have to suck in to button your jacket.
Grand Prix TTS Classic Sport Coat – $400 (On sale for $199.99)
Winston Classic Hunter Show Coat – $649 (On sale for $390)
Make sure this fits inside your belt loops. Sometimes belts are made wide and don’t fit with every pair of pants. We always like a classic cognac colored brown or a basic black. Also make sure it’s not too long. You don’t want the extra flapping around in the wind while you ride!
TIP: You don’t have to buy a riding brand belt!
Ariat Ladies Classic Reversible Belt – $49.95 (On sale for $14.99)
Tailored Sportsman Quilted Belt – $114.95
You probably don’t even think about your socks but your feet take a beating from being in boots all day and great fitting, comfortable socks make a huge difference.
Foot Huggies Riding Socks – $19.95 (TTE special pricing of $14.95 for a limited time)
Most of these items are available on our website on consignment and are always in great condition! Anything you feel that doesn’t fit in your wardrobe can be resold with us to make a little money that can go back into buying any pieces you’re missing – rebuilding your equestrian capsule wardrobe doesn’t have to break the bank.
Thank you, Taylor! Ready to clean your stash of maybe-I’ll-wear-it-again breeches & show clothes? Check out The Tried Equestrian as your simple solution for equestrian consignment!