Ranch Riding requires a working look. No stones, no pearls, no spikes, no sparkling stuff. Forget colored chaps and hats. But it doesn’t mean that a ranchy outfit has to be boring or simple. Ranch Riding is like any another class: a good outfit needs to be prepared. In my opinion the idea that Ranch Riding doesn’t require a lot of stuff is wrong. It has its own rules like English classes, Horsemanship or showmanship. You need a different saddle, a different hair stile, a different pair of chaps and so on. The class is quite new and it is difficult to create a “perfect outfit”. I watched a lot of people showing and I tried to understood what is cool and what is not.
We can start from the top. Most of the hats I saw were black, brown and sand. There are almost no grey hats and absolutely no white hats. Most of them are simple, without laser decorations or stitches. Some hats makers already started to make some special models for Ranch Riding. I wear a sand hat without decorations. It matches everything.
The shirt, like in every other class, is one of the main elements of the outfit. A lot of people wear a one colour cotton shirt. There a lot of red, light blue and brown shirts. The white shirts is maybe too elegant… Not a lot of cowboy would wear it during the everyday work at the ranch. Squares patterns are the most “in” now. You can see them in every colour, from the classical ones (brown, black, blue, red) to the more extravagant ones (fuchsia, pink, lime green). Normally I use two shirts for Ranch Riding. One is a “peach” colour, a mix between pink and orange. The other one is a pink, fuchsia, and light blue squares pattern shirt. I match both with a scarf. As I said in a previous post (https://fancyinthesand.com/scarves-do-or-dont/ ), scarves are a must in Ranch Riding. I wear one which matches my boots (brown, pink and green). My belt is a simple leather one with a basket tooling and some rawhide decorations. Blingy belts with stones are not appropriate as animal prints like leopard and zebra prints. I wear a pair of stretch mid-rise jeans. I don’t like low rise jeans for showing. I think they are uncomfortable and my shirt falls always out from them. I don’t wear chinks because I don’t like them. And I don’t wear “normal” chaps too. A Ranch Riding outfit should simulate the one of a real cowboy or a cowgirl. A cowgirl wouldn’t wear a pair of brown tight ultra suede chaps. So I decided to wear just the jeans inside of my boots. What I like most about my outfit is my pair of boots. They are brown, pink and green and they look really cool!
I ride on a reining saddle with wooden stirrups. Of course there is no silver on it. I use a breast collar and a rear cinch too. My pad is really ranchy. It is beige with some orange and burgundy decorations on the side. I think it is perfect for this class.
Last but least makeup and hair style. A “everybody-look-at-me” makeup is too much. Unfortunately I had to avoid red lipstick and black smoky eyes. I decided for a light smoky eyes makeup in the earth tones: brown and beige. I use a lot of mascara but I don’t wear artificial lashes. I also wear a nude lipstick. To complete the look, I make a pony tail or a braid. Simple but effective.
That’s all. I am still not convinced about my Ranch Riding outfit but I will keep it that way this year 🙂