Monday, June 5, 2017

gear post: 2017 edition

As a self described borderline-hoarder, I especially appreciate that eventing calls for so much stuff. And every year or so I like to go through an inventory of sorts of what I'm currently using (2016 post on show apparel is here, and my 2015 post is right here). L Williams' recent inventory post reminded me of this, so here goes!

Today let's just stick to the stuff we are using for competitions - and I'll take advantage of using even more of those lovely photographs Austen snapped while at Loch Moy recently. Thanks girl!

it's pretty amazing how much stuff fits into this trailer haha - esp the junk we can get into that wooden trunk!

For dressage, Charlie wears a PS of Sweden dressage bridle with no-name extra long webbed reins from consignment. The bridle has a removeable flash strap (he actually raced in a flash and it's been decided that he simply goes better in one) and sports a Dark Jewel Designs browband.

Some of our favorite venues (like Loch Moy!) provide bridle numbers for the dressage phase, but most just expect competitors to wear pinnies. So we picked up these competition number sets from Dover to make our own bridle tags, the better to show off our colorful coats!

dressed for dressage success?
His bit is a Sprenger KK Ultra bradoon snaffle (a hand-me-down from Izzy). After taking a clinic with Stephen Birchall last winter, we experimented with a single-jointed fat eggbutt snaffle. But ultimately he goes a little better in this bit.

Believe it or not, Charlie actually uses the same saddle and accessories as Isabel for dressage. We have a Bates Isabel dressage saddle, Prolite shimmable half pad, and Ovation Gel Body Form dressage girth. The girth is about 2 years old at this point and is showing signs of wear, tho Charlie wears it covered with a terry cloth sleeve anyway bc he's a sensitive snowflake lol.

Irons are of the plain fillis variety that came with my first saddle off eBay a literal decade ago. Leathers are from consignment. Typical competition saddle pad is also from consignment.

dressage saddle and storage in the trailer. extra hooks for all the things, and extra bits bc hi my name is emma
For jumping, Charlie wears the Mark Todd bridle in the Dy'on style (a gift for which I continue to be very grateful!) with flash strap and matching Dark Jewel Designs browband. The reins are extra long rubberized Stubben buckle-end reins (with brass hardware to match). He wears a Nunn Finer neck strap as well.

We've played a little with bits, but Charlie goes in either a plain loose ring Sprenger KK Ultra, or the universal KK Ultra (same mouth piece but different cheeks). The universal has added no-name flat curb rein. I also have a Stubben double jointed full cheek, but that's not in regular rotation.

Charlie wears Isabel's old jump saddle too - a Bates Caprilli that's been converted to wool flocking. Ollllllld-ass stirrup leathers from aforementioned decades-old first ever saddle off ebay (something I will replace sooner rather than later); and lightweight Compositi stirrups. 

Girth is the Ovation Fleece-lined Equalizer, which we switched to after Sir Dinosaur-Stuck-in-Tar-Pit decided my fancy ADT anatomic leather girth was a no-no. We use the same Prolite shimmable half pad as for dressage, and typically compete in this navy LeMieux shaped pad. 

jompies outfit!
For the rider, not much has changed in the last couple years. For dressage, I wear Tredstep Da Vinci boots and Symphony breeches. Plus a Horseware Competition Jacket in berry, and my tried-n-true Equi-logic stock tie from Riding Warehouse (alas my DIY tie isn't really the right color for this jacket). And my standard One-K Defender helmet and black Roeckls.

To jump, I normally switch to Piper breeches (but have also jumped in my Montars and Irideons) and Mondoni Kingston tall boots. The protective vest is by Harry Hall out of the UK (Beta 3 certified and pretty freakin affordable too!) and the skull cap is also by One K (tho the cover is by Charles Owens and decorated with a fun patch from ebay lol).

The competition pinny is from Smartpak, armband from Dover, and little nubby spurs with nylon straps from ebay. I wear either my brown SSG gloves or navy Roeckls to jump.

two different looks for one special pone
Rounding out the whole shebang are Smartpak long sleeved sunshirts, or just a regular old polo from Marshalls haha. And usually a Mango Bay belt.

Charlie wears black Woofs on his front legs, and Weatherbeetas on his hinds. Plus Horze velcro-on bell boots. Maybe when we get to more advanced cross country and do more actual galloping, I'll invest in better protective boots. But these do quite nicely for now.

carrots are always in style
All in all, I'm pretty satisfied with the gear we use. Nothing stands out as a weak link, or is on its last legs or anything. Tho aside from the bridles, none of it is particularly fancy either.

Looking forward, I'll need to replace a few things eventually, and may want to consider some upgrades:
  • tall boots - the Mondonis are showing their age
  • stirrup leathers for the jump saddle
  • xc boots for the horse
  • pinny (one of my clips cracked)
  • RoadID bracelet to replace arm band? 
  • new helmet soon-ish
  • dressage gloves
  • dressage girth

What about you - do you feel like you've basically got everything you need? Or are you still working to gather all the right equipment for your sport of choice? Do you like to mix it up at every outing, or do you have some tried-n-true basics that you know work well for you?

Would you consider yourself more of a minimalist? Or a full-fledged tack ho? Somewhere in between? 

40 comments:

  1. The only thing I *need* at the moment is another set of stirrups. There are many things I'd like to get/upgrade, but I can definitely get by without them. Also recognizing that I have a bit MORE than I need these days and have been passing things on to friends lol.

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    1. Omg haha let's not even talk about the stuff that I don't need or am not currently using..... There isn't time enough in the work to inventory all that!

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  2. You both look sharp in your outfits. You can't beat safe and stylish. I have a Road ID band and love it. Highly recommend.

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    1. That's good to hear - I know other ppl feel similarly. I just keep on forgetting my arm band lol, and actually at Jenny camp the Velcro rubbed a little bit (I'm sure totally unrelated to Charlie running like a freight train haha)

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  3. most of my gear i bought because Amanda told me to LOL. how sad is that?? Stirrups I suggest MDC for anyone looking. Love them. I have a pair for both my saddles now because they are so freaking comfy. My only upcoming purchase so far is a jump saddle, I think I am set with most of my equipment. Tho I bought a new show shirt lately that i havent ridden in yet but LOVE it has a magnetic show collar....win win!! (I hate stock ties and i always lose detachable collars...) One of my best buys ever was my one k with sunglasses. LOVE that thing....got it on tack of the day for like a 3rd of what it costs retail. Love it. I think we all need help with how much CRAP we have though. LOL

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    1. Omg so much crap. Also I got my one k skull cap from TotD too - such a great deal! Tho I had to unsubscribe from the email bc..... Reasons haha.

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  4. I used to think I was middle of the road. Then I took Aimee's quiz. And it turns out I'm a bonafide tack ho.

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    1. see, i'm in this strange no-man's-land bc i'm definitely probably maybe a hoarder, but my score on Aimee's quiz was marginal at best. i guess so much of my stuff falls into the "misc" category of stuff that doesn't get used much, maybe doesn't cost a ton, but that i never ever want to let go of bc maybe one day? like, all sorts of bits, spurs, saddle pads (omg), plus leg boots, wraps, bandages... various grooming tools (and multiple sets thereof for different locations - trailer, stable trunk, traveling tote...), nvm that i only ever use the same two brushes ever. tho i do happen to have QUITE a few bridles. so i guess at least there's that...

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  5. I need to do this. And then sell off all the other stuff that doesn't make the "recap", because I really do have piles upon piles of stuff that I don't use. I just have a hard time parting with stuff I like, even when I don't use it!

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    1. yea.... the 'selling off all the other stuff' is always part of my master plan too, but somehow always ends up on the back burner. le sigh. but yes, do tell of your current assortment of accouterments etc!

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    2. yes i must admit this gave me a strong urge to do a blog post on this same thing. AND I have a great pair of boots I STILL havent put up for sale. Procrastinators UNITE! :)

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    3. ooh yea, definitely hop on and do a post too!!

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  6. I have a Courbette saddle, with matching stirrups and girth. And two matching Courbette bridles (go eBay!), one matching set of Courbette reins, and one matching set of no-name split reins that also match. Oh, and a matching breastcollar. And... umm... Six saddle pads? No, wait, eight, because I have six blue ones and two white fluffy ones for when I eventually show. And I think four extra browbands, because I bought some blanks off of eBay with the idea that I'd make my own beaded browbands - which has resulted in months of browbands and a box of beads sitting around the house, but I'll get to it eventually, I swear.

    ...And not one single horse that is actually saddle trained. :) I had a crazy instructor back in the day that insisted (and my parents caved), so I've actually had a saddle since the mid-1990s, even though I've only owned horses for a little over a year now. At some point, for giggles, I should list out the sheer amount of tack/grooming supplies I owned long before I actually bought a horse. It's... it's something. lol

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    1. I literally just giggled out loud when i got to not one single horse that is actually saddle trained....LOL :) that is great....and saddle pads don't count. they are like potato chips you can't have just one (I may have and i kid not about 20 saddle pads. I have issues)....You need to have your stuff no matter what am I right? :)

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    2. lol in fairness, Sarah - Charlie is actually my first horse ever. and just about everything i listed above (with very, very few exceptions) predates him. including the truck and trailer haha. talk about putting the cart before the horse!

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    3. Emma, at least you leased, right? (Or am I crazy?) I didn't even have that excuse - I was just a lesson kid/borrower of rides. lol It was just, "Well, I have a saddle, so I need saddle pads... and I'm so tired of chasing after stuff the kids use, so I'll buy my own lunge line... and hey, I'm learning to ground drive and these driving reins are on sale... Oh, hey, these split reins match my saddle and I can get clips for them and just swap them in when the bridle I need for today's mount doesn't have reins... Oh god, the campers are so gross and I can never find what I want; let me buy my own brushes..." The first day I brought all my stuff up to my BO's, she just started laughing as I unloaded the car. :)

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    4. lol yea that's true. most of my big ticket items were purchased during that lease period (4yrs, so it was pretty legit). i hear ya tho on somehow managing to amass a lot of stuff despite not having a horse. and definitely had my own full set(s) of tack before isabel too. it's an addiction! and who wants to wait for lesson kiddos to finish using the 'communal' stuff anyway?

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  7. Haha I'm a tack ho, not a hoarder so I buy a ton of shit, but I sell just as much and probably own less than most people think. It actually stresses me out to have nice things sitting around not getting used. I have been known to loan things out to friends just so they're not sitting around uselessly.

    I'm currently torn between putting together perfect outfits and going "lulz but i don't actually ride".

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    1. yea..... see, i've not mastered that particular approach of keeping the revolving door of tack going.... it's like hotel california over here, lol.

      also tho. perfect outfits can fix many woes :)

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    2. SprinklerBandit we all bask in your tack ho ness (that is a word TOTALLY) and aspire to be like you :) and perfect outfits look good in closets too!! pfft :)

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  8. The amount of crap you guys can fit in that trailer is astounding.

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    1. it really truly is. like. SO MUCH STUFF. it's deceptively spacious in there tho - so much space.

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  9. Eventers - total Queen's of equipment

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  10. I feel like I'm a minimalist, because all 3 horses share the same saddles, saddle pads, girths, and for a while, bridles (but switching the bits got to be too much of a pain). I ought to take an inventory though, because I think it's probably more than I think it is!

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    1. ha i bet esp now that you have your own farm, the equipment and gear multiplies like bunnies ;)

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  11. Oh man. I feel like a tack ho deep inside however the reality is I'm currently a minimalist... though to be fair I haven't take inventory like ever so maybe I do have a ton of crap and just don't know it hahaha

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    1. yea i'm some weird mishmash between hoarding all the things but kinda just using the same stuff over and over again. it's strange lol

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  12. I actually feel like you have a really reasonable amount of stuff. I own 4 bridles just for Nilla. Eugene has 3. Levi has 3. And I think I own 3 saddles for Nilla, 3 for Eugene, and 2 for Levi. Going to an event is always a puzzle of how do we get all of the tack for both of our horses into this trailer.

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    1. ha i mean - remember this is just reviewing the stuff i use for shows. it's not really possible to use all my bridles at an event, so the extra bridle for my other jump bit is excluded from this rundown. my hackamore is not included. all the other stuff that gets tossed around for various adventures, not to mention all the hold overs from days of Isabel gone by.... none of that is recounted here. this is exclusively reviewing the things i currently use for competitions haha. trust me, there's more elsewhere!

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    2. That makes me feel better then. I just have one bridle for eventing for Nilla so I'm doing pretty good there.

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  13. I love Charlie's dressage bridle! How do you like your Mondonis? Did they last a long time? I always ride in paddock boots/half chaps, but need to get some tall boots at some point.

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    1. i actually adore these mondonis, and they were recently on sale for quite a steal at Divosa. they're super comfortable and have held up admirably to about 2.5 years of abuse. some discoloration around the zipper happened early on, tho that's remedied by boot polish. over time, some of the stitching on the back of the calf by the zipper has worn out, and recently the laces on one of the boots busted (also replaceable). but they still clean up super well (and in fact i still wear them at shows). my only sadness is that my left calf changed shape for the worse after my leg injury and that zipper doesn't stay up any more, making me reluctant to simply go back and buy the same pair of boots again for fear that they wouldn't fit. sadness.

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    2. Thank you! That is super sad that the left no longer fits

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    3. I mean it still fits - you can see I'm wearing it in the pic above. The zipper falls tho.

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  14. I love it -- all of it! I rarely show in the same outfit twice in a row, haha. Perks of doing just schooling dressage shows! Haha

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  15. Oh, this is so me. I'm a tack ho to the max, and my tack ho-ness (yup, that's a word now) is super happy that I don't have everything yet and still need to buy MANY THINGS. I've been looking at Bates Isabel for dressage as well because of the adjustable gullet. How do you like it? I wouldn't be able to buy one now, but I really like the look of them. And I haven't found anyone else who really uses one! What do you like about yours?

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  16. Eh, just replace the elastic yourself! Easy and NBD!

    I'd LOVE to be a tack ho but kids+being broke = no tack ho for me. I DO have specific brow bands for each of my big horses (pony has all his own freakin wardrobe that he CAME with - like 8 blankets/sheets, 6 saddle pads, his saddle, gel pad, girth, bridle, boots, and his halters, lol!) but they both fit the same basic saddle/girth combo and bridle. I do have a pair of nice flatting boots as my "Arena" is just a mowed pasture w/ ruts and dings throughout. But each horse does have their own leather halter, nylon halter and rope halter.

    And I have a few saddle pads, but the only 2 I LIKE are my smart pak pink and purple square pads, lol... pink for the grey mare, purple for the pinto (only because pink is highly questionable on her bright bay coat, lol!)

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  17. Hi Emma! I recently found your blog and went to the start to get all caught up. Now I realize we were competing at Loch Moy together but not in same division I don't think.
    Anyway, I really recommend the Road ID bracelet. Much easier to wear than armband. Lots of color options, maybe even bling is available. I think you'd like it.

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  18. I am also thrilled to start eventing because then I have excuses to buy MOAR STUFF

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