I'm very excited to be traveling to Paris and London in the spring and this time I would like to see some great European tack stores! Any suggestions as to great places to visit??? I need...nothing! I just want to shop at some cool places. Thanks for any ideas!
Oh dear. I traveled to London extensively in the mid 80's and the tack shops were divine. Swaine, Adney and Brigg, Moss Bros. (called Moss Bross by the locals) and even Harrod's had huge tack inventory. By the early 90's SWA tack was relegated to the basement, and a small corner it was, Harrod's had moved all the horse equipment off its own floor to a corner of another, and Moss Bros. had abandoned almost completely their horse business. I would think you could explore these three, and hopefully they have come back but your best bet is to go to a horsey town and look there. I took the train on day trips and found local tack shops much better equipped. I did shop in Hermes in Paris, but the prices were well beyond my budget. Have fun, but remember lots of items are now made in China! I have held on to my English made bits, mostly out of sentiment, and they are so much better quality than the chinese made today.
I have to agree. I lived and worked in London and couldn't believe how difficult it was to find any decent tack shops in the city.
Patchetts - a shortish drive outside the city have a tack shop, but I wouldn't be driving any great distance to see it.
The Harrods one (on my last visit over) was still terrible.
Lilywhites used to have an equestrian section but that wasn't much good either.
I've lived in England for over a year now, with a horse and have yet to find a tack shop as good as the ones we have at home! Depends on what you're looking for, really, as you won't find any side zip or fancy stitch anywhere but you can find lots of Joules clothing in Harrods! If you fancy a day trip over to sussex or berkshire you can find a few shops that are pretty quality with some decent tack but a ton of beautiful 'country clothing'.
I would still go to Harrod's, it's a London staple! The Joules Collection is much more extensive there than any tack shop I've been in over here. I spent way too much on Christmas presents for my friends. I was dying for some horse stuff while I studied abroad last year, and it held me over till I went home for Christmas.
crap - I can't remember the name of it - I bought my Delgrange saddle in Paris about 10 years ago, and got a STEAL on it. Let me search around and see if I can come up with the name of the store - they were very very nice there. I didn't really bother with Hermes, since it was so far out of my price range.
I bought the most beautiful Herve Godignon halter at a shop in Paris called Horse Avenue - I believe it was in the 13th Arrondisment (sp?) - just a few blocks from the metro, so pretty easy to find. If I can find the address when I get home from work, I'll post it.
Never been to either place, but as far as England goes, I had customers come from across the pond into Horse Country (where I worked for 10 years) and be blown away by the extent of our merchandise. Without exception, they all said they had nothing like it in England, and they came from all over the countryside. You'd be better off looking in antique shops for horse and hunting art. It's not terribly popular now over there and you should be able to get some good bargains.
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I did a trip abroad in August of last year. I didn't find any tack shops in London, but the changing of the Horse Guard was fun to watch, and they have a Horse Guard Museum, which I thought was fun. They had a cute gift shop with tons of cute horsey gifts as well.
In Paris there is a chain of tack stores called PADD, which I really enjoyed. They did have Delgrange off the rack, as well as a bunch of other saddle. They also had a ton of stuff I don't see in the states, like colorful horse boots (bought my horse some burgundy open fronts), breeches, helmets, etc. I bought a stock pin for my Shad which I treasure, as well as some other fun stuff. There are two in Paris that I know of, both with similar items, and both close enough to a major site to walk to. The one I went to was within walking distance from the Eiffel tower.
I LOVE the PADD store in Paris--its on the r. de la Cavalarie (obviously enough). It's not a bad walk from the Eiffel Tower, which I'm sure you'll be making a stop at. It has a nice selection of stuff you can actually afford Last time I was there, I got my mare a pair of the green openfront Eskadron knockoffs they've got.
If you want to look at horse stuff in Hermes, stop in at the store on the Faubourg St.-Honore, not the one right of the Champs on Ave. George V. The one on the Fbg St.-Honore has a bit better selection of horse stuff, and there's a saddler who does repairs in the store, which is fun to watch. (For slightly more reasonably priced handbag type goods that are still French-made, walk another block or so down to the Longchamp store.)
I spent some time in Paris last year, and of course I visited all the tack shops I could find!!
Horse Avenue, right off Avenue des Ternes near the Arc de Triomphe. Herve Godignon, lovely stuff and some highly expensive but gorgeous horse boots, some with exotic leather inlays.
Kineton, directly across the street from the Mirabeau stop on the Metro. Small shop but a nice selection of high-end used saddles. They were very kind to me when I went there, even with my horrid butchering of the French language.
Padd--right near the Eiffel Tower and another one called Padd Etoile closer to the Arc, see their website for more details...this one is a chain but has a great selection.
Devoucoux, 3 rue Débarcadère, pretty close to Horse Avenue, very small shop, custom leathergoods, has some nice Devoucoux accessories.
Padd Etoile was the store I'm thinking of. They have a website so you can check out in advance what they offer. Have fun!
I love this restaurant - the oldest home in Paris, it belonged to Nicolas Flamel (Harry Potter fan alert) and is ancient, charming, and the food is yummy. My friend who lived in Paris for many years took me there.