Taking the plunge to get an actual dressage coat because I want black. But not too $$$. So..
Looking at frock coats but I see that the RJ has 4 buttons above the waist seam, and the Ovation has 3 above, and 1 below the waist seam. So does that make a difference when you are in the saddle. Seems like the lower button might pucker?
And then there is a Devon Aire Stretch Dressage Coat that is apparently not a frock-type coat.
So if anyone has opinions (ha!) you may be saving me some shipping costs...thanks!
If you can, go to a good tack shop that has the styles you favor AND have saddles you can sit in with full-length mirrors. I tried on a couple of jackets at Dover's, sat on a saddle and the very helpful sales lady shifted the mirror around so I could have a look. I ended up buying a Cavallo frock coat.
A coat will hang differently depending on whether you're standing or sitting -- so DO sit in a saddle to see what works.
I think it depends on where your waist is in relationship to the cut of the coat, the waist seam, and the placement of the buttons. Unfortunately, trying coats on in the best approach (yep, that's extra shipping costs if you aren't near a good tack shop). Fortunately, I think that most coats that fit you standing up or sitting in a chair fit you on a horse. And more fortunately, the judge will notice your riding more than your coat!
It can also have to do with your conformation. I have a coat with all four buttons above the waist seam, but I am so long waisted, that it flaps and gaps below the waist seam. I actually added a hook & eye below the waist seam, as I was too frugal to replace a perfectly good coat with less than 20 rides in it.
I actually sat on the plastic horse at the store and it seemed fine, but once I was on the moving real horse, too much gappage for my taste.
I am sure it bothered me - particularly in the pictures and video, than it was ever even noticed by the judge.