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MDPONYMOM
Apr. 22, 2009, 09:36 AM
So I am going to suck it up this year and braid DD's pony even for our local shows...

I have a question though about yarn color. I have always used black since she has a black mane, however, the one and only time I have splurged on a pro braider she suggested navy. Now this makes sense to me because obviously it would be easier to see - I am NOT a pro by any means and do find the black on black more difficult to work with.

So what's your personal preference - do you use black, navy or some other color for those black manes?

Background info - pony is a bright bay with moderate chrome including a sizeable blaze. DD wears a dark charcoal coat and charcoal GPA. (Was wondering about maybe using charcoal yarn???)

Please help... :)

mrsbradbury
Apr. 22, 2009, 09:40 AM
As a conservative, I would tell you to braid with black yarn. Navy would be acceptable if your daighter's coat was navy.

I am not sure about the charcoal yarn.

shawneeAcres
Apr. 22, 2009, 09:42 AM
I always use black on a black mane, why do you need to "see" the yarn? once it is braided in, it doesn't matter, you can "see" the excess hanging down to pull it thru and tie it and then you just need to snip it off, so not sure why you need to "see" it while braiding

GreystoneKC
Apr. 22, 2009, 09:42 AM
Black manes are fun because you can use different colour yarns if you like. Last week I did our very-plain-dark-bay PreChildrens horse in a lovely dark slate blue I've come to like on the black manes. I have been known to use that, navy, dark burgandy (which I also love on chestnuts), dark hunter green, and even orange (Halloween!) and red/green/gold twist (Chrismas!) on bays. I also love light grey, baby pink and baby blue on greys. As long as it's subtle and doesn't scream LOOK AT MY MANE!!!!!! I think you're good to go. Especially since your horse is already flashy, you don't want to overdo it.

MDPONYMOM
Apr. 22, 2009, 09:47 AM
Thanks all.

Mrsbradbury - that's what I was wondering about with the navy, thought it might look strange with the charcoal coat.

Shawnee - I find it harder to tie up correctly and really see what I am doing. I don't know - I am definately still perfecting it and braiding at 0'dark thirty doesn't help :D

caradino
Apr. 22, 2009, 09:49 AM
personally, i would only EVER use yarn that matched the color of the mane. but if you must use another color make sure your braids are near perfect. it's MUCH easier to see mistakes/sloppiness when you use a contrasting color.

mvp
Apr. 22, 2009, 10:15 AM
I'd just Man Up and use black, especially if my braiding job was not going to be great. Very dark charcoal, however, might give you the visibility you want without creating 'highlights' of your mistakes that the judge can see.

I don't find camouflage yarn a problem for putting braids in, but for getting out. I use a seam ripper to cut through the horizontal loops of yarn I have made over my braid's top. To avoid cutting mane-- the inherent danger in my black-on-black situation-- I make sure I am using the seam ripper in a direction parallel with the mane. That way, I cut yarn, not mane, even when I'm hot, tired, so DONE with the horse show, but not quite.

Hunter Mom
Apr. 22, 2009, 10:26 AM
Mare's mane is black, and for most shows I use black yarn. I never have problems seeing it when it is time to cut out, and it camouflages any braiding oopses I may have. At our barn, we use matching colors for anything rated.

I have, though, also used a deep raspberry color that was striking for some smaller shows where I wanted to be different. However, the braids have to be perfect if you use a contrasting color. Other colors - baby blue in a gray, royal blue in a chestnut or bay, lilac on the gray.

Also, using colored yarn to learn is a good tactic - you can see what you're doing well.

Heineken
Apr. 22, 2009, 11:30 AM
I always braid my dark bays in navy or slate blue. I would think charcoal yarn would look sharp too.

fordtraktor
Apr. 22, 2009, 11:33 AM
Agree that you should only use color if you are really good. Everything needs to be perfectly even with color or it will show.

FAW
Apr. 22, 2009, 11:36 AM
Black is correct BUT a pain in the butt to see to cut out the braids

luvs2ridewbs
Apr. 22, 2009, 11:38 AM
Alot of the pro braiders around where I am do use colored yarn. We had a grey pony done in baby blue and bay's black mane done in purple. It looked really sharp.

MDPONYMOM
Apr. 22, 2009, 11:50 AM
Well I think the consensus is for me to stick to black until I brush back up on my braiding a little. I'm not bad - just not pro quality. :D I will stick to the black for the first few shows and then maybe try the charcoal or the purple.

I love the idea about the purple, hadn't thought of that one. And one of DD's coats is lined in purple and she wears a light purple or white shirt with it.

ImJumpin
Apr. 22, 2009, 12:14 PM
A dark navy will NOT show up any different from black unless you are on top of the horse. A brighter blue will show, but not a true dark navy. It will make taking the braids out easier. Any other "contrasting" color will indeed show up and make braiding mistakes more obvious. Try it at home-- stick a couple of braids in using the dark navy and see for yourself.

And no, I would not be concerned about the yarn not matching the coat. When you can't tell the yarn is a different color, who gives a ----- if it matches the coat?

sopha
Apr. 22, 2009, 12:36 PM
I agree with ImJumpin. I braid in many different colors and most people only notice if they are standing next to my horse. I don't see well and a contrasting colored yarn does make it easier to take the braids out. I have braided in a wide variety of dark colors; navy, purple, hunter green, burgundy. I have also braided in red white and blue for July 4th, and red and green for Christmas. If your braids are tidy, it all looks fine.

DMK
Apr. 22, 2009, 12:54 PM
I NEVER use black anymore, and you can't tell navy yarn is in a mane unless you are less than 3'0 away from it. Like experienced braiders said, it's just terribly useful for old eyes to rip braids without ripping mane, that's about it.

Here's an incredibly close up shot of a blue yarn in a black mane - really - how obvious is it?

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2240/2486513082_4f8b202df8_o.jpg

ETA add, that's not true - I DO use black yarn... on my CHESTNUT! He's got a darker mane with more livers than chestnut hairs, so again, in the interest of my old blind self, I prefer to braid him in a yarn I can SEE when it is time to remove!

So here's the chestnut in black yarn. Again, notice the total lack of obviousness. ;)

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3305/3436281582_9255d4cd42_o.jpg

MDPONYMOM
Apr. 22, 2009, 12:59 PM
WOW, how jealous am I??? DMK those are some beautiful braids!

DMK
Apr. 22, 2009, 01:08 PM
aw, thanks!

I like to play around with the colors on the bay horse - I have a dark green I will use when I wear my green jacket, and an incredibly vibrant royal purple that matches a few ratcatchers, although that one was a bit over the top ... but probably not more over the top than my kippy style belt, so it's all relative.

I'd like to play with more colors on the chestnut because he is shaping up to have a really perfect mane to braid, but he's only two and standing on the line, and his length of neck is just good, not awesome, so I don't think I'll be using too outrageous colors that might draw attention to that fact! But when he is under saddle? His trot is fancy enough to let me put any damn color in that mane I might wish to use. :D

Twisting
Apr. 22, 2009, 01:11 PM
I used Navy in my plain dark bay. It looked good and was subtle. If your horse blends in to the crowd colored yarn can and that teeny tiny bit of "Hey, look at me"

mvp
Apr. 22, 2009, 01:58 PM
DMK--Love the "bedroom eyes" on your chestnut! Is he ask kind as they advertise?

Sorry for the hijack. Nice braids, dig the black on blond more than navy on bay, just my stick-in-the-mud taste.


But, to the OP-- Dark purple in a black mane for a purple/lavender lined charcoal jacket? I could go there! Neat idea.

Mozart
Apr. 22, 2009, 02:05 PM
Wow, I am really surprised to see people using colour again. I thought all the responses were going to be black black black. Shows how long I have been away from Hunterland!

We used to do bright colours as kids, then it fell out of fashion but, based on these responses, I guess subtle colour is making a come back.

winter
Apr. 22, 2009, 02:06 PM
:slight highjack:

As an aside, while we have the yarn colour discussion going... What type of yarn do you prefer? Composition, brand, weight?
I haven't been happy with the yarn I've been using and want to find something better. It's a little too thin and stretchy or something...

Go Fish
Apr. 22, 2009, 02:10 PM
Mare's mane is black, and for most shows I use black yarn. I never have problems seeing it when it is time to cut out, and it camouflages any braiding oopses I may have. At our barn, we use matching colors for anything rated.

Ha! I'm old and can't see anymore. Our groom will no longer let me take braids out because I end up ripping mane hairs. I can't distinguish the black yarn from the black manes with these old eyes. :lol:

DMK
Apr. 22, 2009, 02:12 PM
DMK--Love the "bedroom eyes" on your chestnut! Is he ask kind as they advertise?

He's a total pocket pony, a complete snugglebunny and about the easiest, most laid back youngster I have ever dealt with. ;)

theoldgreymare
Apr. 22, 2009, 02:47 PM
Does anyone braid with thread anymore? Always my favorite, for some reason my braids come out tighter. As to colored yarn: I just say no. I always match the mane color, even on ponies.

BABYGREENTB
Apr. 22, 2009, 03:52 PM
Depending on who is braiding, we do all kinds of colors! I think at the last show is was purple and hot pink, with Easter Pom-Poms of pastels. And yes, these are "AA" shows.

superpony123
Apr. 22, 2009, 03:54 PM
black. charcoal would look weird, and it would make the horse appear to have a dirty and greasy mane. if the horse was black too, not just the mane, navy might look okay if your daughter has a navy coat. but with a bay? heck no. too much going on. you want the mane to look nice and tidy. the focus should be on the horse, not his hair-do :winkgrin:

anchorsaway
Apr. 22, 2009, 04:33 PM
Does anyone braid with thread anymore? Always my favorite, for some reason my braids come out tighter. As to colored yarn: I just say no. I always match the mane color, even on ponies.

I'm straying from Dressageland, but I (button) braid with thread. I find they stay in better and again, come out tighter.

SaturdayNightLive
Apr. 22, 2009, 05:03 PM
black. charcoal would look weird, and it would make the horse appear to have a dirty and greasy mane. if the horse was black too, not just the mane, navy might look okay if your daughter has a navy coat. but with a bay? heck no. too much going on. you want the mane to look nice and tidy. the focus should be on the horse, not his hair-do :winkgrin:

I used dark navy on my bright bay eq. horse and he looked really nice. Last year the horses from my barn that went to Cap. Challenge and Junior Hunter Finals were both bay and both were braided in navy. It actually does look very sharp.

MHM
Apr. 22, 2009, 05:04 PM
Wow, I am really surprised to see people using colour again. I thought all the responses were going to be black black black. Shows how long I have been away from Hunterland!

You haven't been away that long. ;)

Black, black, black!

Acertainsmile
Apr. 22, 2009, 05:14 PM
I clicked on a link the other day for little rhinestone bands for braids...intersting look if you like a lot of bling...:cool:

I think the navy looks great in a black mane!

ponymom64
Apr. 22, 2009, 05:23 PM
Our braider almost always uses coloured yarn now. For my grey pony it was a medium greyish-blue and for my buckskin it was navy.

Now I have two chestnuts - one bright, bright red and the other light chestnut with a sorrel mane and tail, not sure what colour she will suggest but she does a brilliant job, so I never argue with her ;)

spina
Apr. 22, 2009, 05:30 PM
As to colored yarn: I just say no. I always match the mane color, even on ponies.


ditto. sorry, the navy on a black mane IS obvious - and I don't like it.

CDNJumperGirl
Apr. 22, 2009, 06:03 PM
funny this thread should come up. I was just thinking about doing my bay`s mane in this deep purple yarn i have after seeing this picture:
http://www.smartpakequine.com/productclass.aspx?productClassid=7228
lovely braids, tied up with navy.
very sharp!

OneMoreTime
Apr. 22, 2009, 06:33 PM
If you're braiding with colored yarn, in addition to making sure that the bottomline of braids is even, now you also need to be certain that they are all tied at the same point in a line, and that it is an even distance from the bottom. If you're a perfect braider, I think it could look nice, and I have seen it look eye-catching. However, even the braids we've seen from some of the pro braiders might not pass this test. I do my own braiding for small shows & there is NO way I'm skilled enough to pull it off well.

snaffle635
Apr. 22, 2009, 09:26 PM
A dark navy will NOT show up any different from black unless you are on top of the horse. A brighter blue will show, but not a true dark navy. It will make taking the braids out easier. Any other "contrasting" color will indeed show up and make braiding mistakes more obvious. Try it at home-- stick a couple of braids in using the dark navy and see for yourself.

And no, I would not be concerned about the yarn not matching the coat. When you can't tell the yarn is a different color, who gives a ----- if it matches the coat?

Totally agree. My now retired horse was a very dark bay and the braider often used navy. I didn't notice until I was on him...but it looked lovely close up.

snaffle635
Apr. 22, 2009, 09:28 PM
funny this thread should come up. I was just thinking about doing my bay`s mane in this deep purple yarn i have after seeing this picture:
http://www.smartpakequine.com/productclass.aspx?productClassid=7228
lovely braids, tied up with navy.
very sharp!

That's just gorgeous...and now I think I'm in love with that bridle. :-)

justmagic
Apr. 22, 2009, 09:51 PM
I braid mine in blue, or dark purple and they both are black but have also done deep red in the black manes. You really, really can't see the color unless you are on top of them. My one does the Reg Conf and wins in colored yarn. All our horses go in colored yarn even at WEF, Devon and indoors.

DMK
Apr. 22, 2009, 11:32 PM
You really, really can't see the color unless you are on top of them. ... All our horses go in colored yarn even at WEF, Devon and indoors.

Exactly. If you don't like colored yarn, I totally respect that choice, but don't kid yourself into thinking anyone who matters (judges or anyone more than 3 feet away) can see what color yarn you are using if we are talking about black versus navy yarn in a black mane. That's just not realistic. But wanting black yarn in a black mane just because it is what you like? Now that's a logic I can support!

MDPONYMOM
Apr. 23, 2009, 09:33 AM
This is funny and typically so many different opinions. Thanks so much for helping me out and it seems now that either way I go I think it will be fine.

BTW that picture from Smartpak is exactly what made me think of this.

However, I must say that I am not too pleased with our local WalMart. I did go out last night to try and find some navy or dark purple yarn to supplement my black collection and the selection at WalMart was HORRIBLE! I did not know that you could even make such ugly colors of blue and the purple was shocking violet color.... :no: So no new yarn for me. And my biggest dissapointment of the night - no Kiwi Parade Gloss polish!! WT*****?? End of WalMart rant....

Hunter Mom
Apr. 23, 2009, 11:01 AM
We had good luck finding colors at Michael's, and Hobby Lobby carries a lot of yarn as well if you have one in your area. In fact, we took a "field trip" one day and descended on them in boots & breeches, swarming the yarn area. We scooped up yarn, latch hook tools, scissors and more like horses on grain. The employees didn't know what to think of us!

amastrike
Apr. 23, 2009, 01:28 PM
Now I really REALLY want to learn to braid!! Some of those colors are just gorgeous and really subtle.

Renn/aissance
Apr. 23, 2009, 03:19 PM
I will use navy yarn in a black mane on a dark bay or black horse. On a cherry bay, no. Black is always appropriate for a black mane, especially if your braids will get fuzzy as the day goes on.

Seven-up
Apr. 23, 2009, 05:55 PM
Whenever I see braids with a contrasting color, I just think the braider ran out of the right kind of yarn! :lol: Or maybe the braider has gone colorblind.


Although, I must say that when I showed up at the barn on St. Patty's day, the braider had everyone done in dark green yarn and she added a little sparkly jewel on one braid. It was really cute! For a special occasion like that, I am fine with it. But on a regular day? Matchy-matchy for me. And I'm already searching for salt & pepper yarn to go with miss grey mare's salt & pepper mane. And we are months away from being ready for a show, and even farther away from a braid-worthy one!

caradino
Apr. 24, 2009, 11:18 AM
Whenever I see braids with a contrasting color, I just think the braider ran out of the right kind of yarn! :lol: Or maybe the braider has gone colorblind.


Although, I must say that when I showed up at the barn on St. Patty's day, the braider had everyone done in dark green yarn and she added a little sparkly jewel on one braid. It was really cute! For a special occasion like that, I am fine with it. But on a regular day? Matchy-matchy for me. And I'm already searching for salt & pepper yarn to go with miss grey mare's salt & pepper mane. And we are months away from being ready for a show, and even farther away from a braid-worthy one!

haha agreed on this point too! a friend of mine was once riding a light grey mare in a springtime "fun" show and did her mane in baby pink. i have to admit, it was pretty cute. BUT neverrrrrevereverever would i think to do that at a "real" show! i have been known to scour craft stores for just the right shade of tan to match a flaxen chestnut mane, heaven forbid it didn't match EXACTLY! it was a lot harder to find than i thought i would be!