From Endurance to Dressage
I like clothes. I don't like to pay for them though which means I sometimes get creative. I shop for bargains, and I look for brands that are as good as. Not only do I like street clothes, but I LOVE riding/barn clothes. A large area of my walk in closet is dedicated to my riding wardrobe.
I am sure that most of you do the same things - buy on sale, buy last season's color choice, and buy from stores that don't actually sell riding apparel. Over the holidays I received a hefty gift card from Cabela's, and while I did buy a few non-barn items, most of the card was spent buying stuff to wear out at the ranch.
I love this flannel shirt. It is fleece lined with buttons and a zipper closure. It even has a light hood. Worn over a base layer, it gives me the warmth I need without being heavy - $39.99.
During the winter, I ride exclusively in technical shirts - the kind used by runners. They dry quickly and layer perfectly under a vest or sweater. This one has thumb holes, and it is just slightly thicker than my usual picks, but it's perfect for the cold, damp weather we're having right now - $34.99
This makes vest number four in my closet, but they each serve a different purpose. I chose this one because it's a soft shell which is great when it's windy. It is never cold enough here for me to ride in a jacket. The most I ever ride in is a sweater or vest over one of my technical shirts. This one is a bit long, and since it's not an equestrian vest, it doesn't have the flare at the bottom to clear the saddle. I've already ridden in it though, and that didn't actually bother me. It was a bit pricey, but since it was a gift card, I splurged - $70.00.
Items #4 & 5
I've written many times about belts since I love those just as much as I love breeches and tops. I have more C4 belts than I count (most of which won't quite fit me now - QUIT EATING SO MANY SWEETS!), and I have only two leather belts (one of which doesn't fit either). I needed some new belts so I bought one in brown and one in black, and they are super cute (and they fit!) - $34.99 each.
Since it usually isn't warm enough to wear a jacket at the barn, I like to dress in a variety of layers. First, of course, is a technical, long sleeve shirt. On top of that, I often wear a pullover which I then exchange for a vest once I am in the saddle (see above). My collection of pullover sweaters was down to about one, and it is starting to get a bit raggedy. I love it though, so until it literally falls apart, it will stay in the rotation. To prolong its life, I bought this Under Armour fleece-lined hoodie which was more expensive than I'd normally like, but again, gift card - $41.25.
None of my purchases were great bargains, especially if you're just buying them to be cosy on a walk, but had I bought similar items from Dover or Dressage Extensions, they would likely have been a lot more. Normally, if I want to buy four or five items that coordinate in color, they won't be found in Dover's bargain bin. Not in Riding Warehouse's either. Since I was shopping at a non-riding store though, I found everything in my size in the colors that I wanted without digging through pages and pages of bargains.
What's your favorite non-riding store for buying riding clothes?
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
*** SCEC 10/15-16/22
2022 Completed …
(*) Tehachapi 5/22/22
(*) Tehachapi 7/24/22
(***) Tehachapi 8/28/22
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 62.115%