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Stirrup leathers: Millbrook, CWD, Devoucoux?

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  • Stirrup leathers: Millbrook, CWD, Devoucoux?

    Looking to purchase some new leathers soonish as my Bates lined leathers are looking pretty rough and definitely stretch. I also think I need to go down a size as I had to put holes in them (although I am currently using the top two “premade” holes) I would like to have some wiggle room without having to put holes in myself because then they end up uneven
  • Original Poster

    Well that ate my post
    I just bought a used Butet to hold me over until I get a Mademoiselle. I am leaning towards CWD because I know they will go well with the Madam and not mark it up. However someone said they had less back pain with the Millbrooks and I could certainly benefit from that!
    I am MOST interested in the Devoucoux Jumping Stirrup leathers - they are wider (2in I believe) and monoleather like the webbers. I don’t think I necessarily need a Stirrup leather to “fix” my position by any means but if I can make myself more comfortable with a wider leather that would be great (multiple lumbar disc issues).


    • #3
      I don’t have any experience with the other brands you mention, but my CWD leathers are going on 10 years old and are in great condition. I would buy another pair for sure, but probably won’t need to think about it for another two decades.
      "I'm not always sarcastic. Sometimes I'm asleep." - Harry Dresden

      Amy's Stuff - Rustic chic and country linens and decor
      Support my mom! She's gotta finance her retirement horse somehow.


      • #4
        My vote will be Gary Mundy leathers every single time. Lots of very happy customers on this forum. Lots and lots.
        Flip a coin. It's not what side lands that matters, but what side you were hoping for when the coin was still in the air.

        You call it boxed wine. I call it carboardeaux.


        • #5
          I own a pair of CWD leathers, and they haven't let me down yet. I have owned them for four years, and they are still going strong. I haven't noticed a significant amount of stretching either. They look very nice on my CWD saddle and haven't caused any rubs on the flaps.

          I know that Millbrook leathers are super popular, but I have never personally had any. However, I have heard that they can be harsh on the flaps of peoples' saddles. If you have a calfskin saddle, I would stay away and stick with a calfskin stirrup leather.


          • #6
            I have CWD leathers that are about 4-5 years old. Still in excellent condition, definitely no stretching. Even though I ordered a new Voltaire I turned down buying their leathers- as I am quite happy with my CWD's and expect them to last many more years!
            A blonde & her hunter:


            • #7
              IMHO the Millbrooks are not majick. They're ok but the hype far eclipses the actual benefits. They are just stiff, wider, thicker leather leathers. Like what we had before calfskin lined leathers were invented. Nothing more revolutionary than that.

              I actually prefer my Prestige no-stretch calfskin.
              "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"


              • #8
                I had CWD leathers for 7 years, sold them with the saddle, and I thought they were awesome, no stretching at all, I liked that they had the half holes and wore like iron, and not so thick that they were hard to adjust either. If I bought another saddle I would want CWD leathers.


                • #9
                  When I got my last saddle I figured that it would last me the rest of my life (I'm 66.)

                  Unfortunately this saddle is covered with calf-skin (it was what I could afford). It came with calf-skin covered stirrup leathers that I hated, Hated, HATED because they twisted so darn easily. Since I ride in double off-set stirrups it was easy to feel when the stirrup leathers twisted up by the stirrup bar. These calf-skin covered stirrup leathers were the FIRST ones that twisted on me in 47 years of riding. I will never buy calf-skin lined stirrup leathers again.

                  So in spite of the warnings about using them on calf-skin covered saddles I bought me a pair of the Millbrook stirrup leathers. I LOVE them, they have helped stabilize my lower leg somewhat (according to my riding teacher) and they are so comfortable! My shins got sore with the calf-skin lined leathers where they crossed the front of my leg (sore down to my shin bone), and when I started riding with the Millbrook stirrup leathers my lower legs stopped getting sore, though there is some residual physical harm (bumps on my shin bones) from those months I rode with the calf-skinned lined leathers.

                  I have used the Millbrook stirrup leathers on my calf-skin covered saddle since March 2017 (3 rides a week), and they have yet to mark up my calf-skin covered saddle flaps. I conditioned these leathers at first with lard, working the lard well into the strap and the edges of the Millbrook stirrup leathers, and after most rides I work saddle soap into the saddle flaps and into the Millbrook leathers, again making sure to work the saddle soap into the edges of the leathers.

                  If I ever get to buy another saddle again I will definitely buy another pair of the Millbrook stirrup leathers. They have substance, they do not twist, they stabilize my leg, and they are comfortable, much more comfortable to me than regular stirrup leathers. I have the feeling that the Millbrook stirrup leathers will last until I die, and then still be good enough for another rider to get a few more decades of use out of them, with proper care.

                  The Millbrook stirrup leathers are sort of pricey, but to me they are worth every single penny I spent on them. To get a pair that fit me I had to buy two pairs, I followed the chart and what the chart said would work for my legs was WAY too short for me ( and I ride Forward Seat with short stirrup leathers.) I gave the too short pair to my riding teacher when I got the pair that was long enough for my legs, and in spite of the fact I had to buy two pairs to get one that fit me I STILL think they are worth every penny I spent on them.


                  • Original Poster

                    That is good to hear about the Millbrook leathers! I have the same issue with the leathers pulling/ resting on my while riding although I believe it could be from my stirrups - I have the MDC Super Sport with the twist top and I twist it to 45 degrees to help with my knees but it seems to pull the leathers across my shin more. I was SO hoping someone had a pair of the devoucoux leathers, since they seem like a good combo of a wide leather a soft calfskin. I definitely think the CWD leathers are a safe/ good choice there's just so many other options!


                    • #11
                      I definitely recommend Millbrooks. No, I don't think they will solve rider issues, BUT they do make me feel more stable. And I can tell a huge difference when I ride in a friend's saddle with "regular" leathers. They are rough when you first get them, I soaked mine with olive oil a few times the day I got them, and I cleaned and conditioned them often to get the broken-in feel. I haven't noticed any issues on my saddle flaps... I'll be sure to look closely but if I haven't noticed, that's good enough for me haha

                      I will say I think they stretch some, but that is a feature of unlined leather. So I can't exactly complain about that. I have 4 holes to spare as they stretch, so I'm not concerned. Worth every penny to me.


                      • #12
                        I know this is a pretty late response to a post, but I wanted to post my personal insight as I have now owned a pair of Devoucoux as well as Millbrook leathers. I hope my response will at least help someone looking at this post in the future.

                        I recommend against the Millbrooks, especially for calfskin saddles. They are more comfortable than nylon-lined (thick) leathers, but I do not appreciate the way that they rubbed my calfskin flaps and I also hated the way they stretched out. I feel like I had to hike it up a hole every other time I rode. I also felt like they had a fairly significant amount of bulk for the "tail" of the stirrup that comes out under the skirt, even more so than a pair of nylon-lined leathers, but I may just be sensitive. They did feel better under my leg, however, as they aren't as thick. They do break in nice (though very stiff at first), but even when broken in, they still rubbed my calfskin saddle.

                        I recently purchased a pair of Devoucoux jumping leathers (the mono-wide, new type of leathers, not dressage leathers and not the traditional Saumur leathers) and they are wonderful. I love that there is no tail-end to have bulk under the skirt, they feel just as nice (if not better) than the Millbrooks on my lower leg, and they do not rub my saddles wrong. They are a bit stiff when new, as are the Millbrooks, but break in nicely. I have tried the leathers with regular stirrup irons as well as the Free Jump stirrups (with the "perpendicular" stirrup keeper) and have found that the Free Jumps work perfectly with them, for those who may be curious as I was before I purchased them.

                        CWD owns Devoucoux, so while I haven't touched a pair of the CWD So'Jump leathers, I am sure they have about the same feel and they are styled very similarly.

                        I decided against the Antares version of the So'Jump leathers as they didn't seem to be made of soft leather, but I haven't touched a pair of those either.

                        Hope this helps! Sorry for the very, very late bumping.
                        Last edited by annairb; Sep. 9, 2018, 04:08 AM.


                        • Original Poster

                          That is helpful! Thank you! When you use the Freejumps with the mono leathers how do you store them? I know you can't run them up like normal (both the free jumps and the mono leathers), so do you remove your stirrups each time or just cross them over?


                          • #14
                            That was one concern I had about purchasing the Devoucoux jumping leathers, about not being able to hike up my stirrups at all. I didn't want to drape them over the seat of the saddle ("crossing them") as I was nervous that my stirrups would scratch the seat (although I do have stirrup covers). I had done that previously with my Millbrooks and it started to cause lines - I stopped doing it quick enough before it caused any permanent damage and just hiked them up as normal.

                            I ended up taking the Devoucoux leathers off after every ride and hanging them up in my tack locker. I thought it would be a pain in the rear, but they're actually very easy to take off and put back on (unlike my old, thick, nylon lined Prestige leathers).

                            I find it totally worth the extra little bit of time to have all the added comfort and looks of the Devoucoux leathers. I absolutely love them and will likely never switch back!


                            • #15
                              I liked my CWD leathers, but I actually just went back to the Prestige ones and have been very happy with them.


                              • #16
                                Can I ask a dumb question? What are the design of the Millbrook leathers supposed to help with? Ive been intrigued by them.
                                "I can't help but wonder,what would Jimmy Buffett do?"



                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Jersey Fresh View Post
                                  Can I ask a dumb question? What are the design of the Millbrook leathers supposed to help with? Ive been intrigued by them.
                                  They are supposed to help your leg be more still. Since they are thicker and stiffer and more easily wedged between your leg and the saddle flap, they are a little more stable than super thin leathers.
                                  "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"


                                  • #18
                                    My vote is for the Devoucoux leathers! I rode in them one time and couldn't go back. The feeling of no buckle at all under your thigh makes a bigger difference than you would think, and I love that I can use the leather to rotate my plain jane fillis irons instead of buying fancier irons.


                                    • #19
                                      Another Gary Mundy evangelist here. They are gorgeous, durable, totally customizable, and easy to adjust. They don't have any magical features, but I think there are limited functional things that stirrup leathers can do besides not break, adjust easily, and look fabulous.