Western Show Attire

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Western Show Attire

This is a discussion on Western Show Attire within the Horse Tack and Equipment forums, part of the Horse Tack category
  • Western attire
  • Western show tunic tops

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    12-30-2007, 12:56 AM
Western Show Attire

So, I've been tossing around the idea of maybe showing Western next season. I'm a 99.9% English rider, but I think it may be fun. Plus, if I'm going to be spending the money to rent a trailer, haul to a show, get a hotel, etc, I might as well enter a couple more classes!

So anyways, I'm clueless on what the trends for show attire (and tack) are! I don't want to break the bank, but I don't want to look like the goofball in a plaid shirt and bolo tie! I want to start my shopping early to try to catch a deal.

Are vests and slinkys good or outdated? What about super slinkys? What do I look for in a hat? I guess I'd be doing Pleasure or Equitation/Horsemanship.

I like the looks of this:

No good?

I own this outfit, minus hat, but I think it might be too boring:

Funny event here...I only ride English, but my team needed a rider for this Western class. "Ok Gina, go change your clothes, hold the reins like this, and DON'T POST THE TROT!" I got 3rd out of 15. Ha!

Also TACK! What brands are good? Must I have a breastcollar? Can I ride my boy in a snaffle with two hands? He doesn't currently neck rein.
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    12-30-2007, 11:54 PM
Love both the outfits..... very pretty.

Snaffle and 2 hands depends on age. A Jnr horse can be ridden in a snaffle but a snr horse(6 and over) must be in a shanked bit ans 1 handed.

Slinkies with a vest are fine for riding but not halter......

You don't need a breast collar unless you require one for your horse.

Can't recommend tack as all my gear is custom made by an Australian Saddler (Geoff Hudson for all you Aussie who might be interested)
Although we used a lot of circle y tack when I lived in the states and I can't complain about it

Hat - I like Resistol - don't buy less then 20X or it will flop on the first hot day.
    01-01-2008, 11:47 PM
Lane you rock.

Yea, I personally like that blue slinky.
Normally, women wear lighter colored hats for Western, but some of it depends on your circuit.

Is it true AQHA have banned felt hats?

A decent straw hat is always safe though.

I think western isn't as gaudy as some people say. Simplicity is always a good thing. For instance, don't go with a belt that has all kinds of silver and rawhide on it. A simple black or tan belt with a tidy buckle will look ten times better. It will also be less distracting in Horsemanship.

If you want to stand out, do it with bold solid color, not with sequins and silver and busy multi-colored outfits.

As far as tack, I use a Circle Y show saddle and a matching headstall. If you want to go nutts, you can blow $10 grand on a Phil Harris custom or a Blue Ribbon. Not recommended if you're on a budget . Light oil tack never looks bad, but with lighter colored horses like palominos and some paints, its good to off-set it with a dark saddle pad.

You have a lot of options as far as a blanket/pad. Solid colors are always a win, but they do get boring after a while. I'm personally into checkers. Try to get it to match your outfit as much as possible. Black is good for this.

Yea, if you're going to do pleasure and horsemanship, don't bother with the breast-collar. Its not really used anymore.

Well good luck with your showing!
    01-02-2008, 01:46 AM
Thanks Tim I find myself agreeing with most of the posts you have made :P

PS - it is bad luck to wear a straw hat after Labor Day :P
    01-02-2008, 06:05 PM
Originally Posted by I Love Lane
PS - it is bad luck to wear a straw hat after Labor Day :P
Huh... so that's why I lose in the fall ... lol.
    01-03-2008, 11:56 PM
I was shopping for myself and I saw some really lovely designs that I wanted to show you.

This is a perfect rail jacket as the bottom is one solid colour... Black hat and Black chaps would look super smart

This one you would wear with a Tan hat and chaps

Now these next two I would buy and wear and I LOVE them both but they would be strictly Showmanship outfits. The pink one is WAY to busy too ride in and the purple one has not got solid black at the bottom so it could give the impression that you are leaning forward when you are riding so for that reason.... led classes only for these two....

And my fav out fit..... white is soooooooooooo classy:

    01-07-2008, 05:12 PM
If you are only going to be doing a small amount of Western showing, I like tunic tops. Can be tucked in for saddle classes and worn like a jacket for halter and showmanship. Slinkies and vests or jackets are still great. I buy alot of my show clothes on eBay. I can get them pretty cheap.
For tack, Circle Y is pretty good. I personally ride in a Big Horn brand reining saddle and love it, but it all comes down to personal taste. I use a breastcollar simply because I like them, but they are not necessary.
As far as snaffles go, yeah, horses 6 and over need a shanked bit. And ridden one handed.
What classes do you plan on showing in?
    01-07-2008, 10:51 PM
Thanks for all the input guys! Looks like I'm generally on the right track for my shopping. I think I'll be only doing classes under saddle (is that called "rail?") so thanks for the tip on getting a top with black on the bottom. I already have black boots, pants, chaps, and belt, so I'm going to stick with the black base for $$$ sake!

I've been eying a few lightly used Circle Y saddles. They seem to be pretty nice for staying under $1000. I was actually considering going with a darker oil since my boy is a Paint with tons of white and his sorrel blends in too much with light colored tack. But then, the majority of the saddles I've seen are light oil, so maybe that's the norm.

That sucks about the over 6 = shanked bit rule. I guess we'll have to teach my boy to neck rein before we jump into a show. So maybe we'll put off the Western shows for another year. But of course, that won't stop me from tack shopping/buying!!

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