No matter if you are on the red carpet or in the show arena, fashion is expensive. If you want to stand out you need good quality items… and good quality items cost. But no worries, you can have a good outfit without breaking the bank. You just have to concentrate on some key items and than you can buy the rest later.
For example, a jacket covered by stones is not extremely necessary. If you have a really nice jacket but the other elements of your outfit are poor, you won’t make a good impression on the judge and on the people around you. At the beginning, when you have to “create” your outfit, it would be better to purchase something simple and not too expensive, maybe a nice plain fitted cotton shirt.
So on which items should we concentrate?
First of all, the hat.
A good hat is a must. It is the first thing the judge will look at. It is simply your business card: good shaped hat = professional rider. In order to have a good shape, you need a good hat. Moreover, if your hat is a good quality one, the shape will last longer. If you are about to start your showing career, and you still don’t know which will be your “show colours”, choose a basic hat colour. I would avoid a coloured hat (like red, blue or purple); they are really beautiful, but they are difficult to match and they are not versatile. You can purchase a sand or a white hat. They will match with every outfit and with every horse colour. If you are not really careful, maybe white or sand is not your colour (you will soon have a dirty hat). So you can choose a simple black one: it fits with everything ( a part from chocolate) and it doesn´ t get dirt… perfect 😉 I would avoid stitches, laser decorations or stones. They can be out of fashion in a few years or you may get tired of them. So if you want a hat that will last many years, choose a basic, good quality one.
Chaps are the second key element of a good outfit. They must fit you good. You have to be really careful when you purchase a pair of chaps. They shouldn’t be too large otherwise you will look clumsy and they won’t valorise your figure. They also shouldn’t be too tight. You need to be comfortable in the show pen and a pair of chaps which is too tight won’t allow you to move your legs properly.
If you decide to buy in stock chaps, check the measurement really carefully and be sure that they will fit your legs. If you are not sure about them, write the vendor or ask for a pair of custom chaps. With custom chaps you can’t go wrong. They will fit you like a glove.
Which leather type is the best? That’s up to you. I have a pair of ultra suede chaps and I love them. They are light and I almost don’t feel them when I wear them. They are perfect also for hot summer days. Moreover, you can find ultra suede chaps in the strangest colours. So if you are worried about how to match your colourful jacket, choose ultra suede chaps, for sure you will be able to find a colour which will fit with the rest of your outfit. Pig leather chaps are also really soft but they are thicker. Moreover, it may be difficult to find them in every colour.
If you have to purchase your first pair of chaps, I would suggest you black ones. As I said already a lot of times, black fits with everything and it is eternal. I own a pair of black chaps since six years and they are still perfect.
Once you have a good hat and good chaps, you are ready for showing. You can purchase an expensive pad and a jacket later.
So, which is your opinion about the key elements of a good outfit? Do you agree with me?