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Saddle Fitters in Michigan

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    Saddle Fitters in Michigan

    Looking for a saddle fitter in Michigan, preferably an independent one, to fit dressage saddles to our two new geldings. I searched and the last post on this was about 3 years ago, so I'm looking for updates. We are in Traverse City which makes it even more difficult, but hoping to entice someone up for a visit!

    Prior posts listed: Robin Hosler (I think he has left the state), Pam Omer, Renna VanDooren (spelling?), Luanne Reaume (Schleese) and Sara Ivie (County), Lyndda (Classic Saddlery).

    I also had the thought of reps who might attend Horse Shows by the Bay up here in T.C. I think Schleese had a booth there.....

    Any input or suggestions would be appreciated!
    Original Poster

    #2
    Anyone with input?

    Comment


      #3
      I am not a great source for you--but can answer a couple of your questions. I know that Robin Hosler has left the state ---I used to use him and he was great! Last I know, Pam Omer is still a fitter (and Albion rep) and Luanne Reaume is a fitter for Schleese. I don't know/haven't heard of Renna and Sara. Also, there is Sally Dietrich who is a saddle fitter and rep for Trilogy. To find her contact info, you can go to the Trilogy website and they have their fitters listed by state. I have used Sally and she was very good--she is a rep, but will work with all saddles (and doesn't try and push you into a Trilogy). That's all I've got!

      Comment

        Original Poster

        #4
        Thanks, slp2. That gives me a start. I had not heard of Sally so that is a new lead.

        Comment


          #5
          Jeff Kalman (734/726-0197), Cyndi Parks (231/233-0764) and Tish Graf (708/927-2309) are three others.
          Kitt Hazelton
          Saddle Fitter
          www.pantherrunsaddlery.com
          www.saddlefitter.blogspot.com

          Comment


            #6
            Well, I do know Jeff Kalman and he is no longer saddle fitting (nor is he a rep for Stubben). He is now building very cool jumps and tack trunks. Just an update!

            Comment


              #7
              I have used Luanne Reaume for many years and have been very happy.

              Comment


                #8
                I was very happy with the service I received from Linda Clay of Great Lakes Saddlery (Stubben rep):

                https://www.facebook.com/pages/Great...62608500446112

                Got my semi-custom Maestoso from her this May.
                *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015

                Comment


                  #9
                  I have used Pam Omer & Renna. I don't know if Pam works on anything but Albions. Once I stopped riding in Albions, I stopped using her. Renna will work on just about anything - but he can be difficult to get a hold of. Important to note that he flocks in horsehair - not in wool. People find that to be either a good thing or a bad thing. Be sure to get a price from him up front - I found him to be quite pricey.

                  My current saddle is a Custom - and was bought off the rep's truck last year, so I have just been working with her since then. The jury is out if I would recommend her - had a great experience purchasing and original fitting - her service since then has - to put it mildly - been not so great. I am *still* waiting to hear about a issue with a spot on the leather that I raised with her 6 months ago.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by 2DogsFarm View Post
                    I was very happy with the service I received from Linda Clay of Great Lakes Saddlery (Stubben rep):

                    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Great...62608500446112

                    Got my semi-custom Maestoso from her this May.
                    I also enjoyed working with Linda. She reflocked my saddle for a very reasonable price and my horse goes super well with it. She also sold my other saddle on consignment.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      slp2, last I chatted w/Jeff (about a week ago), he was still fitting saddles, though as you said, no longer repping for Stubben. Have you seen the tack trunks he's making? They're GORGEOUS!!
                      Kitt Hazelton
                      Saddle Fitter
                      www.pantherrunsaddlery.com
                      www.saddlefitter.blogspot.com

                      Comment

                        Original Poster

                        #12
                        Thanks, everyone. That gives me quite a few names to investigate. Maybe we can entice someone to visit beautiful Traverse City this summer and fit a few saddles on the side. (Not so beautiful now with record breaking cold and snow!!!)

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Another vote for Jeff. Great guy! We used to ride with the same trainer, and I know who trained him as a fitter. She's good, and so is Jeff.

                          Luanne is also good. Schleese is not my favorite brand, but Luanne certainly knows her stuff.

                          Lynda at Classic is not everyone's favorite flavor, but I like her just fine. She does good repair work and has a good handle on the products she sells.
                          Head Geek at The Saddle Geek Blog http://www.thesaddlegeek.com/

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Huh--well Jeff indicated to me that he is really getting out of the saddle fitting thing as he concentrates on his tack trunk and jump building. Maybe he is still doing a little fitting though. If he is still is--he would probably be good to contact. Jn4jenny--well worded about Lynda at Classic (she is not everyone's favorite flavor).

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Lynda at Classic is not everyone's favorite flavor, but I like her just fine. She does good repair work and has a good handle on the products she sells.[/QUOTE]

                              She's very forthright and will tell you exactly what she thinks, but she really knows her saddles. I got the first saddle that has ever fitted me correctly from her.

                              Comment


                                #16
                                I too am looking for a saddle fitter and I have contacted Julie Weitzel. I got her name from my dressage trainer. I am going to try and get her here, I also live in Traverse City, but it may have to wait until April, as I am leaving for Florida, Feb. 23 and won't be back until April 2 or 3. I am hoping she may be able to come up before I leave, but we will see. Are you interested?

                                Michelle

                                Comment


                                  #17
                                  Originally posted by Ghlt2014 View Post
                                  I too am looking for a saddle fitter and I have contacted Julie Weitzel. I got her name from my dressage trainer. I am going to try and get her here, I also live in Traverse City, but it may have to wait until April, as I am leaving for Florida, Feb. 23 and won't be back until April 2 or 3. I am hoping she may be able to come up before I leave, but we will see. Are you interested?

                                  Michelle
                                  I really truly mean this: If you actually manage to get her on the phone, and get her to come to your barn, I would love to hear that. I have tried to recommend 5 or 6 people to her over the years. Nobody seems able to get in touch with her!
                                  Head Geek at The Saddle Geek Blog http://www.thesaddlegeek.com/

                                  Comment


                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by jn4jenny View Post
                                    I really truly mean this: If you actually manage to get her on the phone, and get her to come to your barn, I would love to hear that. I have tried to recommend 5 or 6 people to her over the years. Nobody seems able to get in touch with her!
                                    You may get her out once, but don't hold your breath on seeing her again. Bought a saddle off her truck the day she was out and had a minor issue - never got more than a email back from her. It's a shame - I love my saddle, but the reps have protected territories and know that you can't get someone else to come in and work on your saddle in their territory. I think the only reason we got her once was 4 appointments scheduled at one barn in one afternoon - including two who were shopping new saddles - not just a fitting appointment. I got my issue resolved at regionals in Illinois by that region's rep.

                                    I do know she in in Michigan next week - she is supposed to be making a stop at our barn on the 22nd - I am about 45 southeast of Lansing. I would guess you're going to have a tough time getting her that far north without a whole pile of appointments lined up - she is based out of Ohio.

                                    Comment

                                      Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      Michelle,

                                      If you entice Julie to Traverse City for a visit please PM me! I have made contact with Cyndi Park who is near TC and used to be a fitter for Borne. I can let you know how that goes. It is hard to get someone this far north!

                                      Comment


                                        #20
                                        Please let me know if/when you get someone here to TC for saddle fitting -
                                        If I had my choice I'd use the Kitt Hazelton at Panther Run Saddlery, but she's in VT. However she can do long-distance recommendations based on photos and tracings. Detailed info can be found on her Panther Run website. You can also have her evaluate any saddles you may have and she can reflock if you send her the saddle. I may just go that route as it seems to be very difficult to get a reputable independent fitter up here to Northern Michigan

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