I like the patent bridles on black and grey horses, but think they're too much on bays and chestnuts. I hate the white padding -- period. It's nice to see helmets, but I don't like the look of the top-heavy, bowling ball ones.
I adore-adore-ADORE how Charlotte Dujardin's helmet has piping that coordinates with the accent color of her shadbelly. I think the whole look with the helmet and the little pop of color looks really smashing. And I'm pretty much a die-hard "I hate shadbellies/top-hats/the-18th-century-butler-look" person. This is the first time I've seen the FEI dressage attire and really felt inspired not only to ride like that, but to look the part as well. I'd still lose the tails if I could, but I think her attire really does a great job bridging tradition and a modern, athletic look. I could gush for hours about this.
W/r/t other stuff, I am pro-bling, but anti-patent. Patent scratches so easily and I just can't get over it being in a horsey environment. I also like the saggy browbands, but only on horses with certain heads. My mare has a head like a battering ram (I say this with love) and I think it would look nice on her.
I love that there is so much variation-great to see different colors and styles. It was getting old to see everyone in black coats with yellow points.
Some of my favorite coats: Steffen's, the German team ones (LOVE the subtle piping on the points), the gray ones the Spanish team wore (classic, but a little less severe than black), and GB's with the red. But there were so many pretty ones, it's hard to narrow it down!
Also love the helmets, especially Charlotte's with the red piping. Stunning. It looks a little sportier and less 18th century butler than top hats. I like some top hats, but I HATE when they are too tall. It just looks olde-tymey and weird. I could definitely get behind a top hat with some subtle embellishment, but would most likely still compete in a helmet due to my fear of my rehab physician-mother. I just can't take another tour through the trauma ward at the hospital.
The different colored shads with trim and piping (particularly GB, Germany, and Spain's)
Patent boots, boots with tops, boots with subtle(!) bling
Uthopia's shark teeth! http://www.chronofhorse.com/sites/de...BRHester_0.jpg
Long full tails (I hate how some of the jumpers bang at the hocks)
White padded bridles, particularly if there's also a beaded browband and/or ear net! Much too busy!!
Droopy browbands of any sort
Humungous button braids
Being a hunter princess, I hate the "hair in a bun with a big fat scrunchie" look, but I will give it a pass since it's acceptable in Dressage culture
I have no complaints- just happy to see variety. I love the piping and different colored points on the shads. I think the shaped browbands look good on some, but not all. Most importantly, I love the helmets.
I think the ear net thing has gone a little far--there can't be THAT many horses who are hypersensitive about their ears. However, since I love shopping for my horse, I'm happy to have an excuse to buy him a little hat. Look see, Ms. Conservative Traditional Trainer, all the Olympians are doing it!
Even though I didn't like every individual piece, I LOVED the variety! There was a variety of everything: bridles, browbands, bonnets, braids, tail length and shape, saddle pads, tack color, breeches, boots, coats, stocks and pins, helmets/hats, hair, etc. I loved that everyone was at least slightly different from everyone else. Being able to "style" yourself and horse gives so much more personality to the pair.