2013 Equestrian Fashion Forecast
Unlimited Choices at Any Level
We’re off to a wonderful year of exciting new developments in Equestrian Apparel design and function. Innovation and technology seem to be the main focus. The industry has responded to the increasing demand for textile products that are environmentally friendly, pose no health hazards, and conserve resources to the greatest possible extent while providing the wearer with UV Protection, full range of motion, moisture management and be machine washable! Products that have the Bluesign label fall into the environmentally friendly category. Garments with Coolmax®, Icefil®, Durabreathe® or Dri-Lex® labels will offer optimal breathability and lightweight coverage for searing summer rides while Polartec Thermal Pro®, Windpro®, or Windsport® keeps riders protected from winter’s chilly blasts. Ariat has introduced Coldback® technology, a sun and heat reflector for dark textiles that also reduces UV-rays penetration.
Garments from Show Coats to barn wear now offer riders comfort, durability, flattering fit, and style with the added bonus of easy care machine washing! Clever tailoring details such as stretch shoulder panels, mesh lining, concealed zipper pockets or contrast piping and collars enhance performance and style. Ariat Triumph Show Coats include unique side grommets to conceal a show number string under the jacket for a clean, finished look! Now THAT is attention to detail!
Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned professional, choices are unlimited for appropriate apparel for whatever the season or wherever your ride!
Tall boots are styled to be suitable for casual or riding wear. Tall boots now have a more contoured silhouette as zippers allow the boot to follow the natural shape of the ankle. Features such as side zips, contrast stitching, tasseled zipper pulls, accent buckles and waterproof materials combine to give you boots that go from the stall to the mall in a hoof beat!
Horse Clothing continues to keep up with all the trends as well. Turn Out Blankets and Sheets provide ultimate freedom and high tech protection for your equine partner by offering breathability and waterproofing in fashionably friendly fabrics and materials with designs from conservative solids, sharp plaids and pretty polka dots to the latest retro or Navajo prints! Nylon "Designer" Halters and English Saddle Pads are available in every color from soft pastels to rainbow brights and patterns that include snazzy plaids, trendy retro patterns and ever popular animal prints. Western Saddle Pads are available in every color and pattern from basic to bling and offer features such as non slip, breathable and machine washable. Protective legwear for horses has advanced technology built into tendon and fetlock boots to provide innovative impact protection that is lightweight, breathable and durable such as the Memory Foam Boots from Majyk Equipe. To complete your horse’s “look”, horse boots are available in most current trendy colors and patterns to co-ordinate with fashionable horse clothing!
Riding Helmets now meet the SEI/ASTM safety standards, with the exception of Hunt Caps, Top Hats and Derbys. Easy-to-clean materials, lower profiles, dial fit systems and more ventilation integrate innovation with safety and style. The Charles Owen GR8 and Ayr8 are popular models in the show ring with the GPA Speed Air Evolution a strong favorite with the serious Jumpers. The GPA First Lady helmet is designed with a larger brim, protecting the rider’s face from the Sun’s strong rays. Schooling Helmets are becoming more low profile, giving a neat, sleek look while maintaining all the safety features. Shades of purples and pinks still hold their appeal for the younger riders while the new sophisticated shades of brown will certainly catch the eye of adults. Troxel and Aegis have introduced fashionable graphics to some of their products to add more interest. Junior riders love the Aegis Juvenile helmet with a Peace Sign motif in Blue or Tie Dye. Troxel's designs for Western riders includes the Cheyenne Rowdy with its premium leather finish.
With the new ruling by the USDF, Dressage riders must wear protective headgear while mounted on a horse with the exception of those riders age 18 and over while on horses competing only in FEI levels and tests at the Prix St Georges level and above. IRH has added Navy to its line of Show Helmets to accommodate Dressage riders so that they may comply. Other companies offer this color as well, including Charles Owen and GPA.
English Show Clothing, while remaining conservative, has seen exciting developments in fabric content and garment engineering. Leaders in equestrian design are combining premium fabrics with advanced technologies to create the most advanced performance apparel worn by riders at every level. The shape and silhouette of Show Coats is changing, leaning more towards a combination Jumper and Dressage style. The new Technical Show Coats have 4 Button single breasted fronts and a double vent in back. The length is shorter than a traditional Dressage Coat, so works well for Show Jumpers. As an example, Ariat’s Triumph Show Coat features Blue Sign stretch twill and a Coldblack® finish for a cooling effect and UV protection. Other companies offering the latest in Show Coat designs include Pikeur’s Skarlett Coat, the Grand Prix TechLite, Romfh’s Jumper Jacket, and the Ovation Performance Coat. Show Shirts are made of technically advanced fabrics as well, blocking harmful UV rays, wicking perspiration and creating 2 way air circulation in order to keep riders ever fresh and comfortable. Soft shades of pink or blue especially for children are always a hit in the Hunter Ring for children while classic white is still the most popular color choice particularly for adults. Wrap collars are seen more than traditional chokers in the show ring spiced up with a colorful contrasting solid or print lining. Coolmax® and Dri-Lex® fabrics continue be popular for riders in our region. Children’s show shirts start as low as $19.95 and adults at $29.99.
Riders still love the wonderful high tech fabrics offered in many styles of Breeches. The recent introduction of leg bottoms that fit any length or shape of calf or lower leg have been received very well by riders in all disciplines. Hunter/Jumper riders still prefer the low rise knee patch style in shades of light beige and are still showing more interest in side zips rather than front zip. Dressage riders will always opt for the full seat in assorted colors for schooling and always white for showing.
Brown or black zip or lace Paddock Boots combined with Half Chaps provide comfort and function for schooling or recreational riding. Ariat's new Volant tall boot features the technology to ensure peak performance with the comfort of athletic footwear and comes with either a back or front zip! In the show ring, Hunter/Jumpers are turned out in Field Boots while the Dressage riders complete their look with a Dress Boot. Tall show boots are always black and most brands offer several different calf widths to ensure a perfect fit!
Designers and Engineers in the Riding apparel industry continue to commit to providing the equestrian community with the highest level of design, innovation and technology. Delivering the highest quality products possible without compromising safety or style is a constant goal of the leading Equestrian Brands we carry at Charlotte’s.
At Charlotte’s Saddlery we are committed to offering our Customers as wide a variety as possible of those products along with the best customer service and value for money in order to help you fulfill your equestrian goals whatever your level.
Courtesy of Charlotte's Saddlery sales associate: Deborah Mckenzie
11623A Katy Freeway
Houston, Tx 77079