Thursday, September 25, 2014

fall haul from smartpak

SmartPak sent out an email blast last week about a special Fall Haul sale for existing customers, and quite a few folks in the blogosphere mentioned it. 

I suspect that I was not the only one susceptible to such marketing gimmicks lol. 

So I ordered some stuffs!! Yay!! It's a little early in the game for full reviews, but I want to share anyway.

Piper Full Seat Breeches

I *finally* pulled the trigger on the Piper breeches that were sitting in my wish list for months. I ordered the merlot / dark grey variety

I'm still figuring out how much I like them, and might have more to say later. But some first impressions:
  • They definitely don't look great with my brown suede half chaps - but I suspect they'll look sharp with black tall boots
  • The weight is nice for moving into fall, and I'll likely be able to layer in the winter
  • They REALLY show dust and dirt, tho it wipes away easily enough
  • Sizing is true, but so are the tales of woe re: gapping. This isn't a deal breaker, tho, bc nearly everything gaps on me and I usually wear belts anyway
  • So far I *think* I like my Tredstep Symphony knee patch breeches (same price point) slightly better
  • Pockets - esp butt pockets - aren't for everyone. But I am first and foremost a practical gal, so I love me some pockets. And these are deep and sturdy enough to hold things like my phone while I ride

Rockin' SP Fleece Cooler

I ordered this in size M for Isabel (74-76') since a few reviews mentioned having to return for a bigger size... and it looks big to me. What do you all think - should I size down to the small (72")? Or try it with a saddle underneath first?


It seems like nice quality, though, and everything is super reinforced so I think it'll last. My plan is to use it when we trailer around in cooler weather, especially since I have a stock trailer (tho I may know someone who can retrofit plexi-glass windows on it...).

Compositi Premium Stirrup Irons

Lastly, my new stirrups. This purchase was inspired by a review on She Moved to Texas. Specifically - she mentioned that the lightness helped her leg stay in the right place and that she felt less likely to lose her stirrup. In my never ending struggle to find my seat at the canter, I've been losing my stirrups a LOT, so I wondered if these would help. 

SmartPak doesn't carry the same exact version that Lauren reviewed, but has the same brand. This version also lets you choose what color you want the foot pad to be. I wanted black (was sold out), and thought briefly about purple... but ultimately settled on a more conservative gray. 



I like the look, and felt pretty comfortable in them. But my test was not ideal since I switched out the stirrup leathers to my old ones from my hunter days (thinking I'd keep the owner's stirrup irons and leathers together for easy swapping in case she'd prefer to stick with her own stuff) - and the leathers were WAY too short for how I like to go these days. To the point of needing extra holes punched. 

So another few test rides are needed for a full assessment. My initial feelings are pretty positive though - and I definitely like the lightness combined with the shock-absorbent and grippy treads. 


So that's my haul. Is there anything here that you'd definitely like to hear more about? And did you take advantage of the sale too??

21 comments:

  1. Awww, I'm sorry that you don't totally love your Pipers. As you may know, I've had my fair share of trying to find breeches that worked for me, and the Pipers are (for me) the holy grail of breeches! And I too am immune to a SmartPak sale haha :)

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    1. I felt better about them after our second ride- and they definitely look better w tall boots. So they aren't on the return list yet :)

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  2. If you are going to be using the cooler primarily with a saddle under it than I think it fits fine:) Yay sales!!!!

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    1. Thanks- I think I'll give that a try. I just worry about it being so loose and bunched up that it might get caught up in the trailer...

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  3. Your impressions of the Pipers are pretty similar to mine. I did not like the fabric (the weight, the feel, or the dirt-magnet aspect) and they were very very gappy in the waist on me even when they were very tight in the thigh. To me they're super similar to Tuff Rider breeches, enough to wear I wouldn't be surprised if they're the same maker. They aren't the worst thing ever but I too wasn't smitten.

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    1. *where, not wear. I swear I can spell.

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    2. Yea I hear ya. I actually kind of like the weight of the fabric - esp for fall winter. They are growing on me, honestly, but it wasn't love at first sight like the tredsteps

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  4. I really like the Pipers -- they gap a little bit but I wear a belt, so honestly, no biggie.

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    1. Yea I do like the fit for the most part- the rise and everything works pretty well for me too

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  5. Cooler looks a tad big, but coolers often should be a bit big. I'm still undecided on the pipers too.

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    1. That's kinda what I'm thinking about the cooler. This way it can work for larger horses too, as I'm not likely to ever have anything smaller than izzy

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  6. The Pipers are a mixed bag, I think with Sales they make an excellent lower end breech, the styling isn't for everyone and the Merlot is a very deceptive color. It's more purple then burgundy and it does look sharp.

    I did buy a pair of the side zips though. :) Really interested to try them out!

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    1. Right- I agree. Most of the reviews were spot on so I got what I expected - and for 20% off I think they're good for regular schooling. Curious to hear about the side zips!

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  7. Ooo I have Pipers coming soon too! I wear a back brace when I ride so I'm hoping that the gapping won't affect me as much, at least when I'm riding.

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    1. Hm yea that might make a difference. A belt pretty much fixes the issue for me. Hope you like yours!!

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  8. I'm with you on the Pipers--good weight for winter, not my favorite, liking my Tredsteps better ... I probably won't buy another pair of Pipers, though. That's quite a good haul you got, though! Smartpak does have awesome sales.

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    1. Yea the sale price is what did it this time around. For full price, I'd go with another pair of tredsteps. Def happy w my haul tho!! :)

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  9. What a fun haul! Love smartpak and their convenient returns. The cooler does look a touch big, but with the saddle it might lift up a few inches?
    Those stirrups look fantastic! I'd love to read an update on them once you've used them a little more!

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    1. definitely - so far i've really enjoyed them, but will give more detail after a few more rides :)

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  10. Lots of fun stuff! I really like the Piper's but I like a heavier fabric and they fit me perfectly as long as I buy a size smaller than I actually am. The cooler is a bit big, but it will be okay with a saddle under it. I totally forgot about the sale. I was actually going to buy some more Pipers. Pissed that I didn't remember until the next day.

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    1. oh bummer you missed the sale! it was definitely a good one :)

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