Riding wear of today is not what it used to be when our grandparents rode horses.I'm not saying that I wouldn't love to experience dressing up for the barn like some of our ancestors did,
but for the most part, itchy wool and binding corsets are not my idea of a good time on an horse. Also, the added puffs of fabric accentuating my posterior leave me feeling less than pretty.
What I'm looking for in today's riding wear is comfortable stretchy fabric that moves with me, holds it's shape and offers support. Breathable, moisture wicking, cool in the summer, warm in the winter, stain resistant, water proof, and on top of all of that I need to look good! The cut of the fabric needs to accentuate my positive points and hid my not quite so points.
Sounds like the perfect outfit? Then why do we restrict ourselves to wearing these glorious pieces just to the barn? Well not any more.
Why not wear these beautiful items out in real life. WHAT!?! you ask am I thinking...ok maybe not the knee patch pants or full seat pant. But how many of you have jackets that you love wearing. They are cut just right to give your arms freedom of movement. They are fitted, cut the wind, warm and breathable and just about perfect! So why not wear them everywhere?
Ralph Lauren has been designing equestrian wear since the 70's as seen in this advertisement for the riding wear look for non horse people.
This years Arista Saddle coat is comparable to any thing you would see on the run way for fall fashion coats. (This coat is a personal favourite of mine. I wore it over my formal wear to my husbands holiday party this year and loved the compliments I received on it.)
Or this beauty from Horze Equestrian. The B Vertigo Elia Down jacket provides warmth without the bulk. The adjustable strap at the waist allows for a more figure flattering look while the inner cuffs give extra warmth for you hands and arms.
Since its not going to be winter forever, how about this UV coated, moisture wicking shirt from Kerrits .Pair it with shorts or summer skirt for a fabulous look.
Or this lovely ensemble from Arista
Or these Gap Free!!! Jeans from Ariat
Clearly this conversation could go on forever, but I think you get the idea. So the next time you need a spring jacket, a few new shirts, or a pair of jeans, go and check out the tack store. I'm sure you will be pleasantly surprised!
Interested in viewing additional vintage riding habit, check out the Metropolitan Museum of Art link http://www.metmuseum.org/collection/the-collection-online/search?ft=*&what=Riding+habits