I am toying with the idea of starting a free braiding database. It would be open to barns, riders and braiders as a resource to connect braiders or clients around North America, by region, price, experience, etc.
Also I am interested in starting a monthly braiding column on my website. Featuring funny stories, rants, or idea sharing available to young riders and amateurs interested in learning to braid. I would be interested in having guest columnists contribute from all levels and experiences.
Great idea. I'd venture to guess that a lot of people don't even know who their braider is. You show up in the morning, and viola - horsey is all braided. Show is over...leave a check with the trainer. Someone cashes the check...but who is that person, anyway? It's like two ships passing in the night.
My trainer has had the same braider for years. However, there are few shows we go to that she doesn't braid at. It's always a mad scramble trying to find a decent braider. It would be great to have a resource to find braiders in an area that you're unfamiliar with.
I need to learn to braid my own horse--to save some money at shows..I like to idea of a resource where I can learn to do so, maybe even find someone in my area to teach me
this is a good idea!
For the OP, a pro braider?, maybe not a good idea, then!
The stories about "braider mafias" as some of the big shows is amazing and amusing to me. Apparently, one doesn't mess with a show that has already been "organized."
But the website would probably help all concerned if braiders posted their schedules, areas, and contact info for emergency or small jobs. And their lives would probably be a whole lot easier with a list of dos and don'ts about maintaining a braidable mane and tail. They often have to make up for stuff that should have been done before. Sometimes those "raw material" problems are too big to fix in a braiding job.
On the flip side GF, arrive at show expecting horsie to be braided and a braider didn't show so they only braided horses for the "big" divisions. I have had this happen. I learned to braid (ok, braid better) after having braided my horse for a show, and trainer made me take all the braids out because she refused to ride my horse"looking like that" hehe... She did show me a better method, and afterwards I occasionally made a little money braiding at shows. Mainly for people that hadn't gotten on the braider's list or had decided to show at the last minute. I would be at my horse's stall braiding and people would see me and beg me to braid their horses. I never charged as much as the pros, but did pay for some of my show fees on occasion. Even have braided for some fox hunting folks.