With my sister’s birthday approaching, I was determined to get her a great gift. She has a very specific style and taste that keeps up with trends enough to be “on trend”, but most of her items are classic enough to stand the test of time. I also can’t just buy her horse stuff… since she hasn’t ridden in more than a decade and has no plans to start again. (boo)
After spending much too much time scanning through the websites of places I rarely visit (department stores, beauty boutiques, anything that shows up in a mall), I finally caved a bit and asked her if there was anything she wanted. She had a list… on a Department stores website. She forwarded it along to me, and while I didn’t have to search out the perfect gift, I did get to pick something out of a (rather long) list of things that I knew she would love. I could get her someone she wouldn’t just have to return, and I could cater my gift to my budget. Awesome! (budgets are important… unless a pony really needs something)
Since most of my family is 90% unfamiliar with my sport (especially if it is eventing specific), I figured this might actually be a helpful tool for them! I checked around on various equestrian sites (riding warehouse, dover, smartpak, horze, greenhawk, bit of britain), and it looked like only Smartpak, bit of britain, and Dover offered these features. While Dover has an amazing return policy, there isn’t a single actual store in Kentucky and the shipping costs can be a bit outrageous (and slow). Bit of Britain is also somewhere I have ordered form multiple times, but never actually returned anything to. So I decided to build a list on Smartpak!
26 Items made the list. Here are the highlights and why:
Schooling Breeches – Romfh Sarafina & Smartpak Hadley
I own both pairs of these breeches in other colors. The Romfh Sarafina breeches are my favorite pair of pants (ANY KIND OF PANTS) I have ever owned. They are flattering, they are comfortable, they stay up on their own. And they should… They’re incredibly expensive. As a result, I only own one pair, in beige for clinics and shows where I don’t want to wear white (and we’ll get to that in a second).
The Hadley’s are much more affordable. They are SLICK though and not as flattering of a shape. However, I appreciate the fairly classic styling and, for schooling pants, they hit the mark for me. The colors aren’t too crazy without being beige, black, and brown. The rise is a bit higher than the Piper’s, which I like, but they also definitely need a belt, as (you can even see this from the pictures) they are not nearly as high rise as the Sarafina’s.
I did throw in one pair of the Kerrits “power sculpt” riding tights. I haven’t ridden in Kerrits in forever… or tights for that matter, but the marketing ploy of “Power sculpt” got me, and they’re a reasonable under $100 option.
Sunshirts – Kastel & Goode Rider
I own 1 Kastel sunshirt, 2 of the Dover Cool Blast sunshirts, 1 tailored sportsman sunshirt, and 1 ariat sunshirt. The Kastel (in a light, butter color) is BY FAR MY
FAVORITE. It is the only one that I actually feel is cooler than a plain cotton t-shirt, it looks flattering, and it actually protects my skin from the sun. I got my original one for an incredible deal, and I would love to add more to my collection.
I was shocked to find that the Goode Rider sunshirt was more expensive than the Kastel’s, but I figured it would worth adding as just another option to try.
Various Show Stuff – Romfh, Ice Horse, Competition Pinny, Tredstep
Remember when I mentioned white breeches? Yeah – I have one pair, and I absolutely detest them. I think I might still own them out of a sense of obligation for needing white breeches. (There’s no rule that says you have to wear white, any light, neutral color works). However, I am still shamed into owning a pair of pants that I hate and that hate me. Enter the Romfh Sarafina pants in white… full seat… and beautiful.
I also don’t own a single pair of ice boots. (I know, I am terrible). When I needed to ice May last year, I took the liner out of my BOT quick wraps, filled them with ice, and left that on. It worked and was effective, but I probably shouldn’t be seen in public in them. The Ice Horse Evendura Wraps would just be a nice thing to have. Oh – and laugh you hearts out – I don’t own a pinny. I have begged and borrowed (but never stole) one when I needed one, but it’s probably about time I spend the $14 and get one… I really don’t need a custom one… right?
Another “wish list” item, would be an interchangeable collar for my tredstep solo pro coat. This is a total whim item. Like, why is this thing $50? But I still think it would look nice on my Navy coat with May in a white saddle pad… without being too much.
Items I Couldn’t Find
This was a strange thing. There are 11 breastplates on SmartPak’s website (Bit of Britain has 20 and Dover has 12) and not a single one was even the style I was looking for. Every single one attaches to the front D’s of the saddle. (not a great setup for a horse like May, where it is more likely to just pull the front of the saddle down, rather than hold the entire saddle forward). I would much prefer one that attaches to the girth. Like this one from Dover, or this one from Bit of Britain.
Also – my favorite saddle pad is the EcoGold Secure XC Saddle Pad. Smartpak apparently only sells it in White, where Dover had both black and blue, and riding wearhouse had the black version. The blue is really the one I have been eyeing.
Finally, XC boots. I put the outdated version of the professional choice XC boots on my list at smartpak, but it is the new ones you can get from riding warehouse that I am really interested in. I current have the majyk equipe boots (the Gen II versions), but I have been using them for a couple of years now, and they aren’t really in “show” condition anymore. In fact, the one boot is missing almost all of the fabric edging near the bottom. I wouldn’t mind something that fits a bit better. I have been eyeing both the Professional’s Choice Performance Elite XC Front Boots and their Performance Hybrid Splint Boots. Let’s be honest, at BN, we probably would be totally fine with just the splint boots, and they may fit May’s corgi-legs better.
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RJ classics Merlot pants. LOVE. I want them. Also, the whole mint set from PS of Sweden but their mint pads are out of stock. Boo. I LOFF that mint set. But actually, if you contact RW and ask them to get the blue in that pad you’ve been eyeing, I’m sure they can! I contacted them about a girth they didn’t even had and they were able to get it for me (I just didn’t go with it because it was Sept. and the girth was backordered till Jan).
good to know about just asking RW for things! I love the PS of Sweden color sets, but I find that I always end up reaching for my boring, white pads because they’re easiest to clean. However, I still love day dreaming about putting May in their gorgeous, deep blue sets. (and me in a matching outfit, of course!)
Yeah the only one I’ve really fell in love with is the mint. I can get most of the other colors elsewhere but I love colors so I don’t actually use white often lol the Roma pads are just so easy to clean. OMG you should get the deep blue for May. SO STUNNING!!!
I’m not sure if you are a big Amazon shopper, but Amazon has a wish list feature. The best part about it is you can add a widget to your tool bar that’s ‘Add to Wish List’. You can add any item from any site to your Amazon wish list. This is what my husband and I do for Christmas to assist our families with shopping. We both have hobbies (riding and cycling) that no one else in the family is familiar with and it helps them a lot. Also, Dover has buy one get one free on their Kastel shirts right now (I think until tomorrow). Code is CM18BOGOK.
LOVE AMAZON. Probably a little too much… I think that 90% of the non-furniture pieces in our house actually came from amazon, and I got all my honeymoon clothes from them. I’ll have to make one of those too. 😉
I set up a Pinterest board that is a wishlist, that way I can link to literally anywhere and just put the size/color/whatever in the description. Mine is 100% Riding Warehouse! LOL
That’s a great idea too! I always see things I like on pinterest, but I can never track down the actual products. If you’re making the board yourself, I guess that solves that problem! So – do you dare share your pinterest board with us? hahaha
Wishlists are definitely a necessary thing, otherwise you end up with 5,000 horse head necklaces and earrings. Ask me how I know.
Anyway, since you said the Kastel was your favorite, go to their website and shop their Sale section. They routinely have multiple pages filled with shirts/jackets, etc for as low as $20. The colors are usually the older ones, and certain sizes go fast, but it’s a great deal. I paid full price for 3 shirts before finding this out and now have a collection of over 10, so it’s a bit dangerous. The only downside is there’s no returns accepted so be sure you know your size!
If I end up with a collection too large for my closet, I shall blame you 😉
i forgot what a Kastel addict KC was 🙂 LOLLOL
I mean….well ya, it’s true
I am going to second the Pinterest idea, since you can totally use any website for your items. Also, the only downfall of the Smartpak’s wish list is when you get the email “We see you still have items in your wish list!” YES, Smartpak, I know that. I am just poor, OK? LOL! 😉
So poor, but so hopeful! hahaha
My mom used to just give me money to go buy the thing I wanted – even when I had a wishlist. She said she hated getting the endless spam catalogs to the house. Haha!
Oh gosh… I am sure that every house I have ever lived in gets multiple catalogs each month. (Sorry everyone! hahaha)
I am glad you have so many options for your list. I dont really keep a list and probably should. Also why Dover do you send multiple paper copies of catalogs to my house? Why? Waste of time and money. I never use the catalogs (Well i guess i might have to when I move, NOPE will still shop online and probably not at Dover). UGH. I am okay with one catalog but i think i got 5 or 6 the last time. WTF??
I wish i had relatives standing by waiting to buy me the stuff I want!
Mal Byrne breastplate and a Schoekemohle ergonomic bridle.
So much money but so awesome lol
Don’t remind me! I’m laugh/crying thinking about the cost !