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Anyone show Western pleasure?

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  • Anyone show Western pleasure?

    I'm finally getting back into the show ring after 5 or so years of not showing. I've got a green WP horse who I am taking to some local shows to go in some walk/jog classes just to get her experience. Hopefully we'll progress to regular classes.

    Anyway... those of you who show WP .... any ideas on where to find out what the current fashion trends are? I don't want to go crazy since we're doing open shows. But I don't want to stick out in clothes that no one else is wearing, either! I don't have shows around here to go watch, aside from the few open shows we'll be going to. Any good websites? Any links to videos of classes from so far this year? Other ideas?
    Visit us at Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society - www.bluebonnetequine.org

    Want to get involved in rescue or start your own? Check out How to Start a Horse Rescue - www.howtostartarescue.com

  • #2
    Someone locally makes custom show clothes and ships all over the country. Really nice stuff and the prices are fabulous (rail shirts are $25).
    http://shakyh.webs.com/customshowclothes.htm

    Rod's website has lots of show clothes. Even if you don't buy from them, it will give you a good idea of the current trends.
    http://www.rods.com/Tack-and-Show.html

    We don't have a lot of tack stores here that carry Western so most of my stuff comes from online purchases.

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    • #3
      Go to the Hobby Horse Clothing website and they have a fashion guide thing on there. Their shirts and chaps are kinda expensive, but not as expensive as some, that's for sure!

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      • #4
        That Hobby Horse Clothing link is really good. Very helpful.

        Cowgirljenn, that site has a 2010 trend forecast.

        Comment


        • #5
          Local open shows shouldn't matter, but if you want to do breed shows be sure to check the rules in addition to the trends! There are guidelines on what you can and can't wear and you can be disqualified if something's wrong. Just a thought.
          "Radar, the man's ex-cavalry: if he sees four flies having a meeting, he knows they're talking about a horse!" Cptn. BJ Hunnicutt, M*A*S*H Season 4, Episode "Dear Mildred"

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          • #6
            Ditto Hobby Horse, they have a great clearance section too. And be sure to look on ebay and tacktrader, you can find some great deals! As far as your outfit, pick a color scheme (hobby horse has a great color wheel on their website), and stick with it. For your base color (hat, chaps, ect.) black or tan work best. You can match your saddle blanket to this color or an accent color in your shirt.

            For your horse make sure you check association rules to see if your bit is legal. Some show circuits go by AQHA rules, but some are open to any age horse using any bit. Double ear headstalls are in style. Schneiders or Smith Brothers are great sources for tack, and they also carry show clothes and chaps.

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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Originally posted by JBCool View Post
              Local open shows shouldn't matter, but if you want to do breed shows be sure to check the rules in addition to the trends! There are guidelines on what you can and can't wear and you can be disqualified if something's wrong. Just a thought.
              Thanks. I've been reading the rule book.... never shown WP at a rated show, and I wanted to check the rules in case we do get ready for one later this year.

              Thanks everyone else for the help - I knew you all would have good ideas!
              Visit us at Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society - www.bluebonnetequine.org

              Want to get involved in rescue or start your own? Check out How to Start a Horse Rescue - www.howtostartarescue.com

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              • #8
                Just a tip, the lighter the chaps, the bigger your thighs look! I wouldn't be caught dead in buckskin chaps if they were required by LAW! If you are lucky to live in single digit pants then have at it. But if you are like me, thick legs and light chaps are awful.

                If you are also like me with a tiny waist and an a** like a garbage truck, you will have a fun time getting fitted for pants and chaps. This is wear the mom jeans come in handy. High waisted pants or jeans are you friend. Otherwise, when you sit, the top of your jeans slides down under your chaps and sticks out. If this is your body type, I suggest investing in a well cut pair of chaps in a basic color. Cheap chaps may gap and drop down your leg. When trying on chaps, sit in a saddle. That's the only way to really see what they will do when you are on the horse.

                Get your hat professionally shaped if you can. Sometimes local tack shops can do that.

                Some breeds still have riders wearing gloves but many don't anymore.

                I like to see boots matching the color of chaps.

                If you want to see what the Arabian breed is wearing these days, go to
                http://www.proudheritagetrainingcent...ow_n_again.htm

                These are all on consignment and fairly expensive but you get the idea.

                I have seen just as much glitz and glamour at the big QH shows so it depends on how much you want to spend.

                And for open shows, do not be afraid to wear a nicely tailored basic western shirt in block colors with a small neckerchief or with collar open and a glitzy necklace. Just make sure it is tailored. The less puffing the better, you don't want to look like you raided a man's closet.

                In the big rings they say scalloped chaps are out but I would much rather see someone wearing those than having their chap fringe swinging like a hula skirt because their legs are bad or their horse is not a smooth canter.
                ...don't sh** where you eat...

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                • #9
                  LOL!!! I'm braiding(banding) at a Paint show right now.....except I am done for the day and left before much western got going I did manage to not scream "RACE YA!!!!!" to the slow walking western ponies on my out of the warm up area LOL!!!

                  What I did see is pretty much what you would see on the Hobby Horse site. Mostly dark chaps with some toothpick teenagers wearing lighter brighter chaps. Pretty (loud colors) rail shirts in prints and patterns. I can try and get a few pics tomorrow and Sunday though Tomorrow is mostly halter and showmanship, I believe.

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                  • #10
                    You can try Rod's Western Palace for clothing too.

                    Also, www.pleasurehorse.com has a message board. They can probably answer questions as well.

                    Good luck showing!
                    MnToBe Twinkle Star: "Twinkie"
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                    Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!

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                    • #11
                      I just started showing western pleasure last year on an Arab stallion. Mainly local open shows and I was doing it on a budget. Get a good pair of chaps. Like everyone else has said, lighter colors make your thighs look huge. You can never go wrong with black. I got a black leather vest, it's from Hobby Horse although I picked mine up on ebay for much less than retail. And then I just look around for cheap Slinky shirts in solid colors. That way you can change your look with a different colored shirt without having to change the whole outfit.
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                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Originally posted by xtrapony View Post
                        I just started showing western pleasure last year on an Arab stallion. Mainly local open shows and I was doing it on a budget. Get a good pair of chaps. Like everyone else has said, lighter colors make your thighs look huge. You can never go wrong with black. I got a black leather vest, it's from Hobby Horse although I picked mine up on ebay for much less than retail. And then I just look around for cheap Slinky shirts in solid colors. That way you can change your look with a different colored shirt without having to change the whole outfit.
                        Thanks everyone. I'm enjoying this... I've got black chaps (although I need to see if they still fit). The hat I have badly needs to be replaced, so I think that'll be my 'big ticket' item this year.... and see if I can do some smart shopping for tops and such.

                        I am so nervous about showing this time around. Must be my age - because I used to rarely get nervous!
                        Visit us at Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society - www.bluebonnetequine.org

                        Want to get involved in rescue or start your own? Check out How to Start a Horse Rescue - www.howtostartarescue.com

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          You've got me laughing. In 1995, in a fit of boredom having moved to a state where there is no foxhunting, I showed at the Utah State Fair. Both western and English, but it was the first time I'd showed western pleasure since oh, mid 80s, a show or two, and prior to that, early to mid 70s. Bein' thrifty (NOT a cheapskate) I scrounged around, found my gold roughout buckstitched shotgun chaps (new in 1969), western saddle (new in 1966), a one-eared, buckstitched headstall my uncle made for me (actually newest item in entire inventory), silver belly hat from early 80s, boots from mid 80s, and away I went. We did pretty well in all classes. At some point later in the show, someone asked if I was from California. I was puzzled by the odd question, pointed to my Virginia license plates and said nope, just moved out here from Virginia. Asked someone about the odd question and they said 'oh, that's a compliment around here, they all think the good riders are from California.'

                          But no one laughed at my attire, including, I guess, the judge!

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                          • #14
                            Black chaps, matching boots.

                            Wool saddle pad over your regular one.
                            Long sleeved, fitted top. For WP those shirts with the large collars and french cuffs are still in, but at a smaller show you could probably get away with a nice fitted western styled button down with jewelry.

                            Try to ask someone what they do about numbers, they are commonly put on the pad on both sides, but locals might do on the back.

                            As mentioned, double ear bridles are in vogue right now, check their bit rules.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I mean this in the absolute nicest way, and, xtrapony, I know you show Arab and this is also true at Arab shows (I was at one last weekend ). the vest and slinky look only flies for little kids maybe, maybe as in very small H or open show. The breed competitors consider the vest/slinky look "over, passe, old and it makes you look like an open show 4H-er" that is actually a quote.

                              Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, or, what the heck, maybe start a "bring back vests" trend?

                              Here are Arabian pics from western pleasure winners in the ring (scroll down for gals)
                              http://www.calientecreekranch.com/news/index.html

                              AQHA western winners---
                              http://www.wadespellpleasurehorses.com/NowShowing.htm

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                get black chaps and a black hat.
                                blue and green look good on all color horses so it can be easy to find something that looks good in those colors.

                                find a nice rail shirt/ super slinky type deal and get a navajo pad (wool 34X36 if not a tad bigger) that complements your outfit and horse's color.

                                for tack the light color is in but avoid the ultra light it looks wierd. if you find a nice lighter color medium then get that but unless you have an arab, saddlebred or morgan avoid the dark oils

                                use split reins, romels are more in for trail in the aqha and pains, if you have any arab or other saddle pleasure type then romels are good

                                ebay is only your friend if you already know what size and brand fits

                                also for getting a new hat, be sure to buy one that fits in the tack store, hats are not equal and even the same brand and same size can have small but noticable differences in fit.

                                the current trend in hat shape in aqha and stock breeds is horrible looking on 90% of the ppl but is you feel the need to fit in go ahead and have then shape in like you see in the aqha magazine


                                even if you don't buy hobby horse ck them out they do a pretty good job of staying on top of the trends

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  If you're working on a budget, blow your wad on your chaps, boots and hat. I would agree that black is probably the most functional, but dark brown or mocha is perfectly acceptable. Nothing beats custom chaps made my a person who knows what they are doing. They'll last a lifetime if you do it right.

                                  In the old days, you always wore straw in the summer. I would not wear a black hat in the summer...people do it, but it's not appropriate. A light tan is better if you want to stick with felt. Buy the best grade beaver felt you can afford. It won't be cheap, but the higher felts will maintain the shape, particularly if you get caught in the rain.

                                  At the local level, it's perfectly okay to wear a nice broadcloth cotton shirt with a scarf tie at the neck. Take some darts so it fits close to your body. I like Ralph Lauren shirts - that's what I always wore in cutting.

                                  I have a ton of belt buckles (most of them won), borrow one from a friend if you need to.

                                  If you decide to move up to AQHA shows or whatever, you can blow some money on what I call the "hooker" outfits. That being said, I've seen plenty of big winners in the pleasure pen that weren't wearing outfits that looked like they belonged on a Las Vegas showgirl. You don't see guys dressing like this!
                                  Surgeon General warns: "drinking every time Trump lies during the debate could result in acute alcohol poisoning."

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                                  • #18
                                    Tip for saving money on boots, if your feet are on the smaller adult size (5 -7) you can also buy youth boots to fit for almost half the price of the same brand adult boots - I do it all the time. I think Schneiders had a conversion chart of adult to youth sizes, as the numbers are not the same.

                                    I agree that boots, chaps and hat should be the best quality you can afford and all the same color.

                                    I'm not a big fan of the bling myself, so I tend to go minimal on that, and I don't have 1K to spend on a rail shirt either. I like Rods for show clothing, reasonable prices and good quality.
                                    There are friends and faces that may be forgotten, but there are horses that never will be. - Andy Adams

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                                    • #19
                                      Oh, one more thing, invest the 30 bucks for a hat can, to keep the shape of your hat.
                                      There are friends and faces that may be forgotten, but there are horses that never will be. - Andy Adams

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                                      • #20
                                        As the twotrudoc's photos show, shirts with square bottoms, not tucked in, have been in style for awhile. I think that is due to aging exhibitor's muffin tops and is not likely to change. Smooth leather chaps are out (but still seen and very OK for open shows) and nice rough out are in. Straw hats in summer are currently OK at the larger outdoor AQHA circuits, and even seen in black. Splurge on a new hat, boots are not so noticable. Most AQHA male trainer/judges can tell the quality of your hat from 50 yards away, so have someone who knows current show styles shape it for you.

                                        When you are ready for a fancy top, go to a larger AQHA or Paint circuit and there will be plenty of used, but still "in", tops for sale.

                                        The Tina Kaven ( http://www.kavenranch.com/winners.html ) DVDs are the ones I would purchase for training/show presentation tips for western pleasure. The AQHA judges really are rewarding the level necked, nose slightly out, freer, very good and deep movers now, but open shows could be way different and behind the times in that area (IE peanut rollers)

                                        http://www.horsemansmall.com/kaven.c...mem_ID=&afid=&
                                        Comprehensive Equestrian Site Planning and Facility Design
                                        www.lynnlongplanninganddesign.com

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