Blingy reiners

Who says that reiners can’t sparkle? Reiners are women and every woman likes to look beautiful. Till six or seven years ago, in Europe, a reiner wearing a sparkling top was seen as an “alien”. The “acceptable” outfit was consisting in a cotton shirt and chaps. Luckily fashion changed in the last years and also reiners started to be glamorous.

As I was one of the few “aliens” wearing sparkles, I can tell you which were my favourite outfits.

Comfort first. In Reining you have to run fast and being reactive. It could be difficult to execute a large fast circle or a stop wearing a five kilos jacket. In my opinion a jacket is always the top of elegance. But your show top should never shatter your performance. If a jacket is too heavy and you feel uncomfortable, choose something else.

A vest could be a great compromise. It has a great amount of sparkles but it is not too heavy. A lace vest shines bright and it is super light. Moreover, you can wear it for the go round and for the final, you just have to change the plain fitted shirt you wear under it.

Now we must speak about boleros. As I wrote in a previous post ( ) I LOVE THEM! They are perfect for Reining. They are short, light weight, they let you move well and they are aggressive and feminine at the same time. I hope to see more bolero vests in the Reining arenas in the future.

Let’s now talk about my “Reining-favourite”: the Horsemanship top. During my last Reining show I was wearing a Horsemanship top decorated with lace and stones. It was prefect. It was comfortable and it was shining. I would avoid Horsemanship tops fully decorated with stones because they are too heavy.

Zip up jersey shirts are nice, but they are a bit out of fashion actually. Anyway “in” or “out” doesn’t exist, you have to wear what you like.

Last but not least, the plain fitted cotton shirt. If you wear a simple white or black shirt you can’t be wrong. Choose the correct size. If your shirt is too big, you won’t look graceful.

Chaps and hats are still in the “basic colours” (black, brown, sand and sometimes grey). You won’t see any colored chaps or hat in a Reining arena, but I hope they will come up in the next years.

There is just one thing I absolutely don’t like: colored wraps or leg protections. I think that only white or black polo wraps and leg protections are appropriate for the show pen… but this is just my opinion 😉

That’s all 🙂  What do you like to wear for the Reining shows?

Horse show fashion… is there a limit?

Often I had to justify myself for paying attention to my show outfits. “No, it doesn’t distract me. Yes, I think to what I am doing while I show. I don’t think to my show shirt.” So I had to think about that: why fashion in the horse show world is often criticized while in the everyday life is it accepted? Let’s take a businesswoman as an example. We expect her to be elegant and to wear a nice makeup. Nobody would say that she can’t work good because she is distracted by fashion and makeup. Contrariwise, she would give a bad impression if she wore a track suit and her hair was not properly styled.

I think there is no difference between a businesswoman and a rider. Both want to give a great and professional image of themselves.

Choosing an outfit and a coordinated makeup takes time, but that’s part of the game. We prepare for years and we don’t want to look bad at the horse show. Moreover, we choose our outfits at home in order to have enough time to ride and to concentrate at the show ground.

Creating my make up relax me. At a horse show I like to get up early, feed my mare and prepare slowly for the class. It is peaceful and it makes me feel good.

Often we forget to be happy at a  show. We focus on “doing good” and not on “feeling good”.

Riding requires a lot of sacrifices. Why should we avoid to wear makeup or a nice jacket? If it makes us happy, let’s do it!

A fashionista who buys a new bag is never judged bad… the same should be for riders.

I spend some of my free time searching the perfect colour combination (I hope it is perfect 😛 ) and choosing a great makeup. I do it because it makes me feel good. But it doesn’t distract me from training and riding every day.

And you? What do you think about that?

Bolero, bolero… olè!

The bolero vest pictured in the photo was made for me by Sonja Haiden of La Bombastic / Il Bolero raffigurato nella foto é stato creato per me da Sonja Haiden de La Bombastic

There is one big trend in the 2016 show season: the bolero vest. It started as a trend in the youth western riding events. Slowly also adult riders started to wear it also in other classes. It is a shorter vest, its length arrives around the middle of the stomach and it permits you to show your buckle. You can wear a Horsemanship top, a slinky or a plain fitted cotton shirt under it. If you decide to match your vest with a Horsemanship top, choose one not loaded in crystals and stones. It will be too heavy. If you still have one of those zip up jersey shirts (which were “in” several years ago), you can recycle it under your vest.

Normally the bolero’s color should be the same of your chaps.

Most of the people wear it for Western Riding, but you can see several riders wearing it also in Western Pleasure and Trail.

I think that a bolero vest could be really cool also for reiners. It can have a great amount of sparkle without the heavy weight of a jacket or a Horsemanship top. As it is shorter than a “normal” vest, it won’t be a problem to execute the fast reining maneuvers.

I wore a bolero vest for the first time last week. As I was showing in several classes, it was really comfortable. It was a light weight piece and it was nice to wear it in a really hot day. I was wearing a simple white and gold zip up shirt in Horsemanship and than I just wore a gold sequin bolero over it for Trail. I completed the outfit with chocolate chaps, a golden buckle, a gold and brown scarf and a sand hat and pad. My eye makeup was in the gold tones with a touch of burgundy. On the lips I used a dark red long lasting lipstick.

I just purchased a new vest for the fall shows. I chose a black base one decorated with spikes, square stones, chains and zippers. I will match it with black chaps and white, black, grey and purple shirts. I will use two saddle pads: a black and silver one and a black and purple one. I will complete the outfit with an “aggressive” makeup. I will wear a purple lipstick and I will create purple smoky eyes.

What do you think about bolero vests? Do you like them? Do you think they are appropriate for Trail and Western Pleasure too?