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Joyrider
Sep. 5, 2010, 11:48 PM
Hi All,

Our college is venturing into Western IHSA (or is it called stock seat???). I want to try the alum division. My mom is excited and has offered to "outfit" me. I don't have a clue where to start. Boots? pants? shirt? hat? belt? chaps? what do you do with your hair? How much bling is good and how much is too much? I see some wear a bit more makeup than the hunter folks too. Eyes done and Lipstick or no? Help!

jumpytoo
Sep. 6, 2010, 12:39 AM
By rule you MUST have Boots,Hat, long sleeve shirt.

Nice if you can color coordinate things.. after labor day most go to a felt hat, have it shaped properly by the store you get it at and pay attention to store it properly. Really tho.. no one is actually going to shoot ya if you wear straw, just the felt looks so much more professional.. oh yeah stay away from the yahoo rodeo big brims..

Shirt.. can be any material and as bling filled as you like.. but really if you are an average rider do you want shiny stuff near parts of you that move too much?? NO. So instead go with a color that flatters you, make sure the shirt fits nicely and it should tuck in. and yes once you actually tuck in a shirt, you need to wear a belt. Don't wear some silly big buckle, just wear something simple until you win a buckle. Shirt can zip up instead of buttons.. and really snaps at the wrist instead of buttons is very handy. also you may find some shirts with the body suit bottom and snap crotch.. they fitt great.

get a pair of black and a pair of tan gloves.. I like the isotoner thin stretchy ones.. since you draw for horses.. wear the gloves that most match your horses mane area ( by withers) since having your hand blend into the horse can hide you hand if its too busy.

Boots.. no need for pointy toes.. get what is comfortable
(same color as hat is nice presuming hat is black or beige.

Chaps..these need to be longer than the bottom of your foot.. if fitted properly for show, your boots cannot be seen because they are covered by nice long chaps.. and then you pull them up when you have to walk on the ground. Very often these days you will see ultra suede chaps and other leather-like fabrics.. they are handy because they can be washed easily if needed.. good fitting full leather ones can get pricey.

Hair...hair net, hair net, hair net, spray, spray, spray,
under your hat, in a bun in the back, all neatly tied up in some fashion with hairnet or 2 and lots of spray to control it. Nothing hanging down, no piggy tails or long Rapunzel locks hanging down you back..

No need to get all silly with a ton of makeup.. some lipstick to highlight your smile is just fine.. nobody is doing Kabuki. and really.. wouldnt you rather be remembered for your riding????


for people that sew Suitability pattern company think they also have all the old Jean Hardy patterns as well. The is both english and western patterns.

Joyrider
Sep. 6, 2010, 08:25 AM
Thank you soooo much!

Great summary of what I need! I thank you very much. Pretty sharp about the gloves I must say. I never would have thought about that one. Thanks again.

enjoytheride
Sep. 6, 2010, 10:49 AM
Go to a good hat store, hat styles are very fashionable and the shape of your hat is important.

I had slinkies, but a blouse would work too.
I used to wear black breeches under my black chaps since the chaps fit so close and I already rode english.

I got a lot of stuff from hobbyhorse, or you can get fashion advice from them and then shop on ebay.

http://www.hobbyhorseinc.com/10_shopping/shopping_main.shtml

goodhors
Sep. 6, 2010, 03:26 PM
Hire a good trainer to come and critique your team clothing or do a display of "current styles" before you shop.

If none of the Team have a clue on Western, it is VERY EASY to get the wrong stuff. How the hat is shaped, colors, cut of pants and shirt cuffs can be a BIG DEAL in Western showing. You don't want to be doing "old style" clothes and look like you just came from the farm.

Would be worth your Team money to hire in the trainer, get your eyes "trained" for tuning up your look at shows. Not sure exactly where you would look, there is always a local "expert" but how good they REALLY are can vary. State winners over National Winners, mean that usually the caliber of competition is higher. Look at what these folks have won THIS YEAR. How far do they travel, what kinds of classes do they show in and win, or their students win at? Such a trainer can also help you tune yourself up in Equitation style needed to win. Sees and corrects the little things to improve all of you.

Western riding, any type of class is is made of many parts, as is a Jumping class. You can't just plop anyone in the saddle wearing Western clothes, and expect them to place or win. Showing is very stylized now, you as a rider need to know what to expect when you get pulled out of the line, or asked to do a pattern. Trainer can help you with this as a Team.

You also might contact the AQHA and get some recent issues of Quarter Horse Journal, look at the photos of winners. Some of the outfits are amazing, but by looking at many photos, you get a feel for what is currently stylish. Home made is fine if you can make a good finished product. Someone makes those outfits the winners wear! Maybe you could find some used clothing, but you have to know if it is current enough to work for you before purchase. Tack Sales are getting started around here. Many listed on-line in local horse forums, state-local magazines of horse clinics, advertising. Used is cheaper than new.

You want to present a confident, smooth appearance. Knowing that you have the 'right outfit' will aid you a lot. Know what is expected in your riding classes by having Trainer work with you, will help even more. One thing that will label you as a fake Western rider is a bad hat. Crinkled brim, flat brim in front and back, uneven on each side, tells a Western Judge that you are "just wearing the hat". Same as any other way of dressing, one part done wrong, shows others in that "fashion choice clique" that you have no clue. Western hats are ON your head, boxed away or hung up. NEVER layed on a table, brim down. Sorry, but if you are REALLY western, watching a nice hat get mistreated is a sad thing to see.

Good luck with your Team.

Kementari
Sep. 6, 2010, 03:29 PM
Or - just cause SOMEONE had to say it ;) - wear your helmet! You can even get a blingy helmet cover from Hobby Horse to match your outfit. :winkgrin:

I am a personal fan of the slinky+vest combos (if you decide to pursue it any further, that gives you more wardrobe versatility), but that's personal preference.

And please, for the love of all that is holy, make sure that your colors will go well with a variety of horses! I've seen some combos that made my eyes bleed, and since you won't know what color your horse is till you get there, shop with that in mind. Blues and greens (staying away from the extremes in those colors) tend to look good on any horse.

goodhors
Sep. 6, 2010, 03:51 PM
[QUOTE=Kementari;5081663]Or - just cause SOMEONE had to say it ;) - wear your helmet! You can even get a blingy helmet cover from Hobby Horse to match your outfit. :winkgrin:/QUOTE]

This is good, but few younger riders have the confidence to be "the only one" in a class wearing a helmet instead of a hat. And while you don't want to point at Judges, Western Judges tend to be VERY traditional in choosing riders with hats unless the helmeted person is quite superior. And sometimes even then, Judge will choose the rider with a hat to win. Cowboys and Cowgirls just don't wear helmets to go round up things on the ranch.

Kementari
Sep. 6, 2010, 04:46 PM
This is good, but few younger riders have the confidence to be "the only one" in a class wearing a helmet instead of a hat. And while you don't want to point at Judges, Western Judges tend to be VERY traditional in choosing riders with hats unless the helmeted person is quite superior. And sometimes even then, Judge will choose the rider with a hat to win. Cowboys and Cowgirls just don't wear helmets to go round up things on the ranch.

If someone's showing in the Alum division, they ought to be old enough to make choices based on more than "it's what everyone else is doing." ;) By the time I was out of college I was wearing a helmet to show western, and I've never felt I was penalized for it on the open show level (never done breed shows, so I can't comment on that, but those I know who have say they've not noticed discrimination there, either, when someone had the cojones to, as Nike says, just do it).

Like always, it's a choice each person makes for him/herself. I think it's just important for new (to western) riders to KNOW that it's a choice, and not wear a hat just because they think it's outright required. :)

CR Gorge Girl
Sep. 6, 2010, 06:17 PM
No gloves!!!

We don't wear gloves for horsemanship.

It's best to go with simple black chaps and black pants (black breeches actually looks GREAT under chaps, it makes the chaps lay really smooth across your legs. I know one girl on the team (actually, she's our english coach) rides in full seats, they give a little extra stick.
The black chaps will go with pretty much any shirt. No bling belt, a simple black belt (or whatever your color of chaps are) and a buckle. The round buckle is better to have than nothing, it just completes the look. It doesn't matter whether or not you won it. Boots need to match chaps, so black chaps/black boots. One girl has a green outfit, and her boots and hat are a cream color.

Check out hobby horse for shirt ideas.

reinerspook
Sep. 6, 2010, 11:40 PM
Here is the winner of the AQHA youth world in horsemanship:

http://www.aqha.com/youth/activities/yws/2010winningrun/horsemanship.html

Very polished, bling free look. The wave of the future? Maybe!

sahqueen
Sep. 7, 2010, 03:05 PM
I agree...NO GLOVES, NO GLOVES, NO GLOVES!

If you want to get outfitted inexpensive, I own a show clothes consignment business. The vast majority of my items are western, in every color, size and price range you can imagine. I offer free outfitting info to all of my customers and will help/direct them to the accessories and items that they still need and I don't have in stock.

I have over 10 years experience showing AQHA All-Around, in everything from showmanship to hunter under saddle to working cow horse, so can share the most current style and trends out there!

leilatigress
Sep. 7, 2010, 04:51 PM
I agree...NO GLOVES, NO GLOVES, NO GLOVES!

If you want to get outfitted inexpensive, I own a show clothes consignment business. The vast majority of my items are western, in every color, size and price range you can imagine. I offer free outfitting info to all of my customers and will help/direct them to the accessories and items that they still need and I don't have in stock.

I have over 10 years experience showing AQHA All-Around, in everything from showmanship to hunter under saddle to working cow horse, so can share the most current style and trends out there!

I won't touch the helmet debate and will echo the no gloves. Hat style may vary but know what looks good on you. Also when you go to get said hat it helps to have your hair already netted and "done" to get the proper fit on the hat. I showed in a straw for most of the state shows and broke out the felt for the national shows. The team I was on was lucky in the fact most of us wore the same size so we would switch chaps and hats depending on what horse we drew.

enjoytheride
Sep. 7, 2010, 06:20 PM
This really isn't horsemanship, it's an under saddle EQ class and a pattern class so the clothing is different. In IHSA you draw a horse out of a hat, and without a warmup ride you do your class.

CR Gorge Girl
Sep. 7, 2010, 06:44 PM
This really isn't horsemanship, it's an under saddle EQ class and a pattern class so the clothing is different. In IHSA you draw a horse out of a hat, and without a warmup ride you do your class.

It IS horsemanship, IHSA calls it Horsemanship. It's definitely not pleasure, which is judged on the horse, so it's horsemanship.
Beginner Western Horsemanship View Teams View Riders
Intermediate Western Horsemanship View Teams View Riders
Novice Western Horsemanship View Teams View Riders
Advanced Western Horsemanship View Teams View Riders
Open Western Horsemanship

^ Copy/pasted from the IHSA website from the results of Nationals.

SmplySweet1021
Sep. 7, 2010, 06:48 PM
Not to discourage you and not even sure what region you are in. My old college does Alumni Western and let me tell you the girls competing are the former open riders from their school. Very stiff competition.

Have you done reining before? If your in a region where Western is big, I'm a little surprised that you would be allowed in Alumni Western if you didn't show western as an undergrad. I've been away from IHSA for a few years so I don't know the rules.

Good Luck!

enjoytheride
Sep. 7, 2010, 06:54 PM
I know it's listed as horsemanship, but the outfits we wore were different, it has been a few years though.

Here's a video of a class. Pretty accurate representation of the horses in our region.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gjo3a8aLtFk

RubyLink
Sep. 7, 2010, 08:42 PM
Wear a belt.

I was disqualified for not wearing a belt in one of my classes:mad:

goodhors
Sep. 7, 2010, 09:57 PM
So is two-handed rein handling accepted or encouraged in Western? I was surprised to see ALL the riders two-handing with horses in curb bits! That would be something I would never think of talking about. It would be one-hand on the reins automatically, when the outfit is Western.

Kementari
Sep. 7, 2010, 10:51 PM
So is two-handed rein handling accepted or encouraged in Western? I was surprised to see ALL the riders two-handing with horses in curb bits! That would be something I would never think of talking about. It would be one-hand on the reins automatically, when the outfit is Western.

Everywhere I've ever shown, two-handing (in the show ring) would be cause for disqualification, except on a young horse in a bosal or snaffle.

Of course, some people do it when the judge's back is turned...

Joyrider
Sep. 7, 2010, 11:08 PM
Thanks all. Our region/zone is just beginning Western. This will be the second year. We are in Mass. at Mount Holyoke. Our college is ramping up a bigger program and we have purchased 4 Western horses and tack. However, our HOTY ex-junior hunter warmblood, Chandler, is THE BEST at it out of all of them. No kidding. He is quiet, smooth, slow as molasses but responsive and ...gorgeous in Western tack. I could lope all day on him - so comfy! Anyway...I am new to Western and I do appreciate that in some regions I would be very out of my league in alum as they are so competitive. I want to do this just for myself for fun and to support our program and Western in general in our region.

Oh, I loved the Youth winner. I may go ahead and forego bling! She was stunning. But do tell me about the second video link posted showing severl if not all riders using two hands with curb bits??? I too thought two hands only for snaffles and bosals. One hand for curb bits. What up with that?

CR Gorge Girl
Sep. 7, 2010, 11:48 PM
Thanks all. Our region/zone is just beginning Western. This will be the second year. We are in Mass. at Mount Holyoke. Our college is ramping up a bigger program and we have purchased 4 Western horses and tack. However, our HOTY ex-junior hunter warmblood, Chandler, is THE BEST at it out of all of them. No kidding. He is quiet, smooth, slow as molasses but responsive and ...gorgeous in Western tack. I could lope all day on him - so comfy! Anyway...I am new to Western and I do appreciate that in some regions I would be very out of my league in alum as they are so competitive. I want to do this just for myself for fun and to support our program and Western in general in our region.

Oh, I loved the Youth winner. I may go ahead and forego bling! She was stunning. But do tell me about the second video link posted showing severl if not all riders using two hands with curb bits??? I too thought two hands only for snaffles and bosals. One hand for curb bits. What up with that?

LOL.. I go to the school in that video!! and was there(and competed in..lol I can hear my last years coach coaching people in the background noise) for that show last year. The reason two hands are allowed on curbs is because our horses are, for the most part, NOT western horses. They don't neck rein. VERY few are actually in curbs(most of the horses that are in curbs in the video are not our school horses, but individually owned horses that were borrowed for the show), the majority were in snaffles. And if they are in curbs, they're broken curbs. It's up to the owners discretion whether or not to allow two hands. One school that we compete at, RMC in Billings has AMAZING western horses that can go one handed, but you still have the option of riding with two.

The outfits are pretty much the same?? Blingy-esqe shirt with collar and cuffs, belt and chaps.

I will admit that my shirt is over the top..but really, it was pretty much my only choice. Went home for thanksgiving for a week, had to get a show shirt for a show in early december.

bugsynskeeter
Sep. 8, 2010, 01:59 AM
This really isn't horsemanship, it's an under saddle EQ class and a pattern class so the clothing is different. In IHSA you draw a horse out of a hat, and without a warmup ride you do your class.

Horsemanship is the western version of equitation. Equitation = english, horsemanship = western.

To quote AQHA's definition of horsemanship (emphasis mine):


The western horsemanship class is designed to evaluate the rider's ability to execute in concert with their horse, a set of maneuvers prescribed by the judge with precision and smoothness while exhibiting poise and confidence and maintaining a balanced, functional, and fundamentally correct body position.

I agree with the previous posters, NO GLOVES! Gloves were in last decade, not so much now. I recommend browsing places like PleasureHorse.com and AQHA for show result pictures to get a feel of what is in style. If you aren't showing actively in western events, there is no reason to spend $800+ on something like a shirt from ShowTime. Look for used clothes websites to find something affordable.

And please, get you hat properly shaped. There is nothing quite as distracting as a poorly shaped hat. I show in felt year round, but that is a personal preference.

Go a blingy as you want, but remember this: if there is any weak spots in your position, do you REALLY want bling spotlighting it? If you hands aren't very steady, stay far, far away from cuffs that are a different color from your sleeves. My middle was always my weakest point, so my shirts were always black in the bottom to blend seamlessly into my chaps.

Twisting
Sep. 8, 2010, 02:31 AM
Is there any way to do the western thing on the cheep without being embarrassing? Our local show association is having a trial western show at the ranch I board at, to see what kind of turnout it gets. (We're pretty far from the major horse area) If they get enough people they will consider holding hunter shows there in the future. Not having to trailer an hour to shows would be nice.

I'm looking to enter in the baby walk/trot eq classes to help show support. I've never really ridden western and although my horse was started western it's been a few years. I'm borrowing a saddle and my horse is still young enough to be allowed to go in a snaffle. I'm not really looking forward to buying all the stuff for one show, but I want to be respectful to the other riders. It's a local show, so a bit more relaxed than the big stuff.

sahqueen
Sep. 8, 2010, 07:45 AM
Twisting: A simple classic look is a good fitting, starched dress shirt and matching scarf. Shirts can be a solid, strip or plaid.

Coordinate a saddle pad with one of the colors in the shirt for a pulled together look.

Jeans should be western fit (ie long enough to 'stack' and not ride up when in the saddle, not low rise, etc) and starched and creased.

Your hat should be the best you can afford for a possible and as others have said shaped to fit your face. The better you treat your hat while wearing and storing the longer the shape will last. Of course you can go the helmet route if that is more comfortable for you.

Most likely some folks will be wearing chaps, but for a simple green horse class you are better off putting your money into an otherwise well thought out outfit. If you decide to continue to show western then you would want to invest in a pair.

Boots can be a pair of paddock boots at this level of showing. A simple belt can be worn that blends with what you are wearing.

With careful shopping you can do the shirt, scarf, jeans and saddle pad for less than $100. There are lots of web-based consignment businesses out there (including mine) that have some really great deals, especially this time of year as the season is winding down in many parts of the country.

RubyLink
Sep. 8, 2010, 06:38 PM
LOL.. I go to the school in that video!! and was there(and competed in..lol I can hear my last years coach coaching people in the background noise) for that show last year. The reason two hands are allowed on curbs is because our horses are, for the most part, NOT western horses. They don't neck rein. VERY few are actually in curbs(most of the horses that are in curbs in the video are not our school horses, but individually owned horses that were borrowed for the show), the majority were in snaffles. And if they are in curbs, they're broken curbs. It's up to the owners discretion whether or not to allow two hands. One school that we compete at, RMC in Billings has AMAZING western horses that can go one handed, but you still have the option of riding with two.

The outfits are pretty much the same?? Blingy-esqe shirt with collar and cuffs, belt and chaps.

I will admit that my shirt is over the top..but really, it was pretty much my only choice. Went home for thanksgiving for a week, had to get a show shirt for a show in early december.

Are the shows no longer being held at La Cense? I bet it is so much easier at her facility (I won't name any names) than hauling them all to La Cense.

CR Gorge Girl
Sep. 9, 2010, 12:37 AM
Are the shows no longer being held at La Cense? I bet it is so much easier at her facility (I won't name any names) than hauling them all to La Cense.

Yup, shows are now at her facility. MUCH easier I'm sure. This is my second year on the team, so I wasn't on it when the shows were at La Cense. This year we're hosting 3 english shows one weekend, and then 2 more english shows +regionals a couple weeks after that. Our horses are more suited to english shows anyways, so I'm happy about that. Hopefully the weather will be good so we can leave the jumps outside, and not have to drag them inside!! lol.

MunchkinsMom
Sep. 9, 2010, 01:05 AM
For those of you starting into the Western show ring on a budget, I highly recommend Rods Western Wear, their stock chaps ($90) fit well and are inexpensive, and you can get a decent show shirt for under $50

http://www.rods.com/Sale-Chaps-and-Show-Clothing.html

enjoytheride
Sep. 9, 2010, 01:11 AM
Everyone will be wearing chaps, and you can't do anything about saddlepads since it's IHSA.

Half the horses I rode I did two handed. Half of those were probably TBs. Try sitting the "jog" on those!

I definetly wore cowboy boots but paddock boots or even tall dress boots aren't a problem. Again, I wore breeches under my chaps since they fit closer.

Movin Artfully
Sep. 9, 2010, 12:20 PM
Spend your money on a well- shaped hat, chaps, and LESSONS :yes:

Some typical beginner mistakes: No blingy hat bands. No gloves. No pointy toed boots. No straw hats.

You don't need a saddle pad- it is provided with the horse.

katarine
Sep. 9, 2010, 01:15 PM
There are scads of pics here from the 09 Congress.

http://www.pleasurehorse.com/2009Congress/PhotoAlbum/3400/index.cfm