My hubby is very much old school. When and if he ever gets a chance to ride, he absolutely will NOT get on if his horse looks girly in any way. My big gray foxtrotter Jim is the horse he rides and Jim wears a saddle seat type bridle - dark oil (very conservative) with black vinyl browband and noseband (very pretty) and an english curb bit (kind of like an argentine). He looks very elite and stands out in a crowd and the bridle looks great with a western saddle and my Reinsman southwest pad (a melody of tans and browns).
Gotta dig out a plain ol' western bridle, put his bit on it and find a pair of split reins. I think if the pad had any other color besides brown, he probably wouldn't use it either.
Clippityclop is finally getting to spend some time in the saddle!