Life after Lame

I’m sure many of us have been there. You’re riding and something feels wrong. Are you pulling on the reins too much? Is your seat not right? Are you out of balance? I naturally go to what I’m doing wrong (which is the usual suspect), but this time, it was Chance’s leg that gave out.

Chance is my steady Eddie…the Golden Retriever of horses; forever an ambassador for the equine species to kids and adult beginners and husbands alike. To see him out of action breaks my heart. His gait was never completely even, but this seems different, like we won’t ever do that training level dressage class we were working towards.

Chance has a bad stifle (the rescue where I adopted him said it was because of an injury as a colt…we’ll never know for sure). There seems to be quite a bit of arthritis in the joint, and it’s basically taken all summer to for him to feel up to trotting at a good clip for more than 20 minutes; we’ve yet to canter.

I’m left wondering if he’ll ever be back to normal, but then I think will I? My back and neck have arthritis and hurt every other day. I’ve been feeling carpal tunnel start in my wrists of late, and I have to struggle to keep off that last 5 pounds these last few years. As we age together, I’m happy to fight for every canter, trot and trail ride we have left. With enough Advil for me and bute for him, there is definitely life after lame!

xo

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Hermés Craftsmanship

Hermés craftsman, Monsieur Goblet, is featured in this documentary short.

I was mesmerized watching how much detail, work, time, perfection and ultimately love go into Hermés bespoke saddles. In fact, it was so beautiful, I felt the need to share it with my equestrian readers. Monsieur Goblet’s every hand movement is like watching a musician on their instrument. When he’s done, his masterpiece can be ridden in for generations.

Hermés has a wonderfully curated YouTube channel; definitely binge-worthy. The saddle above is the Hermés Arpege Dressage Saddle.

Simply amazing.

xo

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Story of an exceptional saddle-maker at Hermès

Fitting Your Horse Rug, Blanket or Sheet

Fitting A Blanket to Your Horse

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Hermes DouDou Winter Blanket 1850 usd

Now that the weather has started to turn colder, we’re all starting to pull our musty horse blankets out from deep storage. If you’re looking to purchase a new blanket, or even searching through used blankets, getting the best available size is very important. If a blanket doesn’t fit correctly, it can cause discomfort (even rubs or sores), get stuck on a fence or tree branch, or even completely fall off and to get trampled.

When I purchased my first blanket (after adopting Chance), I got it on super sale from eBay, and prayed that it would fit my horse. It didn’t, and I couldn’t return it. Good money thrown down the drain. After that, I decided to actually measure my sweet boy and find something in his size range.

Use the following tips to get the best size for your steeds and for a final fitting, please see the guide below from Your Horse Magazine. They posted a very comprehensive and easy-to-follow tutorial on YouTube.

Measuring Tips

  1. Make sure your horse is standing square.
  2. Have a soft tape measure or a long string available (having a friend to help is always nice!)
  3. Start measuring at the center of the chest (between the two chest muscles).
  4. Stretch out the tape measure or string up the broad side of the horse and all the way around to where the hair starts to hit the buttock.
  5. Keep the tape measure tight and level for the best measurement.
  6. This measurement will be your horse’s blanket size, in inches. (If you used a string, mark on the string where you started and ended and then measure the string between these marks.)
  7. If you are between sizes, order a size up for the best fit.
  8. Remember that size varies between brands, so do a little research on the brand’s sizing for best results.

 

Now the shopping fun begins!! Look at all the cute blanket choices that are available these days:

Post tips or your favorite blankets below!

xo

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Tack and Tweed’s Holiday Gift Guide for Winter 2014

Tack and Tweed Holiday Gift Guide Cover
Tack and Tweed Holiday Gift Guide Winter, 2014

Wondering what to get your horsey loved ones? We have some ideas to help you out!!!

We feature some of our favorite brands, as well as some new ones, most of which can be purchased online simply by clicking the link in the guide. For items sold by Ride Bedford, please give Courtney a call – she will personally help you with anything you need and will be sure to give you the best product at the best value.

By the way our very own Tack and Tweed limited edition cell phone covers designed by Beatrice Bulteau and made in France, may be purchased here, or by emailing me directly (Lisa@TackandTweed.com)!

Tack and Tweed Holiday Gift Guide 2014

Happy Holiday Shopping!!!

xo

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Do you RIDE?

SaddleWallRecently I had the pleasure of meeting an accomplished young woman, equestrian, and owner of a unique new store for equestriennes aptly named, RIDE. Courtney Caverzasi’s newest venture is one part high-end boutique and one part high-end tack shop in Bedford, NY; centrally located for the horsey set in Westchester and Connecticut. RIDE carries riding and apres-riding apparel for men, women, children (and yes BOYS) and their equestrian and canine companions.

Her vision is to provide a lifestyle boutique containing everything the well-heeled rider could possibly need all the while, giving them a wonderful shopping experience. She fills a niche for riders looking for great shopping, personal attention and exclusive brands that cannot be found in any high street shop remotely close to this area.

When I walked in, I was amazed to see how beautiful and tasteful it was. A lifelong rider, Courtney shaped her vision through 12 years with Hermes, and it shows. Offering complementary coffee or tea (wine in the evenings), she personally escorts her clients through the different sections of her boutique. From the natural wood saddle rack wall, to the horse mural in the back of the store, everything is perfectly thought out, displayed well, easy to see, touch and try on.

She strives to provide highly desirable brands (many times sourcing items made in the USA) that are hard to find. For example, she nailed an exclusive with Antares, who typically only sells saddles direct. Not only does she sell these items, she understands them, and has used them herself. She has an in depth knowledge of everything she sells and will recommend the highest quality within each client’s budget.  She is constantly nurturing her vendor relationships, resulting in an amazing selection and value for her customers.

Here are some brands she features (but there are MANY more):

Smith Worthington

Samshield Helmets

Hermes Saddles

DeNiro Boots

Lorenzini Stirrups

Next time you are in the area, I HIGHLY recommend the trip to RIDE, and tell her Tack and Tweed sent you. You won’t walk away empty handed! 🙂

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Courtney astride her friend’s noble steed 🙂

 

RIDE

648 Old Post Road (Rt 22)

Bedford, NY 10506

914.234.RIDE

www.RideBedford.com

xo

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Congrats to Jessica Springsteen – Winner of the American Gold Cup!

Jessica Springsteen Round One -  a killer round!
Jessica Springsteen Round One – a killer round!

Fabulous day of jumping and sun. Just a quick post to congratulate Jessica Sprintsteen in her win. Beating former Gold Cup champ Brianne Goutal and perpetual competitor Todd Minikus can’t be easy!

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xo

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Grand Prix Sunday – Glamptons Classic

The last day of the Hampton Classic ends with the Longines Grand Prix. I’m watching it live, as I cannot be there today. I am sad, as I had a great time last year acting as a low-level paparazzi, capturing the celebs in the VIP tent, but I’m sure they will be strolling in their heels through the acres of shopping in the Boutique Garden.

Here are three of my favorite booths, all of whom give meaning to the word Glampton 😉

My first stop was the famed French fashion house Hermès. They were named the Official Technical Riding Apparel Supplier of the United States Equestrian Teams. Hermès has been became the Title Sponsor of the U.S. Show Jumping Team since February, and their designs did not disappoint.

James Sardelli, the equestrian account executive, let me try on the official show jacket, and let me say it was like butter. The fabric was stretchy, soft and breathable, with the added benefit of being machine washable. I’m not convinced that if I was lucky enough to have one of these babies that I would just throw it in the washing machine, but it is a nice option. The tailoring is impeccable and the buttons are made of palladium; they never skimp on quality.  Regular, but well-heeled, riders are able to buy the riding jacket in dark navy blue for a mere $1925 (men’s and women’s both available). The competition red jacket is only for the team members, darn. Absolutely gorgeous.

The breeches were beautiful, of course, and created with the same quality and craftsmanship. I love the tan and black, but are also available in white. $990. Men’s come in black and white.

Inside their award-winning booth, I was also drawn to their warm up jackets, belts and just about everything else they had. The saddles, of course are just a dream.

 

Across the boutique row, and hard to miss, was another favorite designer of mine, Missoni.

They had a gorgeous presentation of their famed chevron print, and set up a mini lounge where tired Classic-goers could kick back and put up their feet….like Dane. I met Roxane Mosleh, COO of Pomme, NY Inc and Christopher Philips, VP of Sales, Missoni The Americas. Mrs Mosleh said her husband is an avid rider so she thought it would be a great idea for Missoni to “show” at the Hampton Classic, I agree. I especially loved their bath towels and robes. Soft and plush, I can see Annalise and I fashionably exiting our evening bath for our evening drink (milk and wine, respectively).

 

Last stop of note (there were so many, I had to edit), was the Der Dau booth.

Known for their customization of just about everything, I was not only drawn to their impressive display of boots, but also their breeches. One particular style has real snake skin on the knee patches and detailing around the belt loops. Gorgeous, fun and funky, I loved them. The rep said that she was sure he would even design in fur, if requested. That would be cool. Back to the boot wall – every imaginable color and leather is available, only limited by one’s imagination. Price points are hard to calculate, as different details/customizations cost different amounts of money, but there is a “ready to wear” collection, which are gorgeous and more affordable.

Enjoy some other shots of cute and fashionable people items from the Glamptons Classic:

 

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xo

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Not Very Horsey? Don’t Worry! You’ll Fit in at the Hampton Classic

My son (who is taking riding lessons) and I attended the opening day of the Hampton Classic this past Sunday. We were rewarded with a beautiful day, good food, lots of fun fashion and amazing riding. There was so much to feature, I wasn’t sure where to begin, but my son inspired me to feature the family-friendliness and diverse activities of the Classic. If anyone thinks that this show is just for the extremely horsey set, or that it would be too boring for kids, is simply wrong.

There was just so much to do. After a long drive, my son was hungry, so we grabbed a pizza at Pizza Luca by Stable Row. I’ll get into more detailed food reviews later, but we gobbled it up! Any kid can easily find something to eat, but I truly recommend the pizza (side note to Pizza  Luca: please add more of your delicious mozzarella and basil to the margherita!!!).

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Pizza Luca – Margherita (Napolitano)

Off to the practice/warm up rings for an up close and personal with the competitors. The mounts were absolutely gorgeous, as were the riders; I was so jealous that I wasn’t competing or at least simply sitting on a horse. We also caught some of the short stirrup classes (soooo cute).

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She did so well!

We then toured the swanky VIP tent, but my son was anxious to get to the kid’s area, so I was only allowed to pretend to be a VIP for 5 minutes. Long enough, however, for a quick glass of Wolffer Estate’s white – yum!

Dane - Too Cool for Schooling (VIP)
Dane – Too Cool for Schooling (VIP)

 

The kids area was (is) fabulous! There is a full size play ground, petting zoo (with very CLEAN and friendly animals), a cookie decorating station (thanks Citarella!), and an art station. The little kids can also join in the horse action with an adorable pony ride. We loved the gallery of children’s art – some was truly amazing. We can’t be there on Optimum Kids’ Day, but no matter, we had plenty to do anyway.

 

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This takes me to the short walk over to the boutique gallery. Even if you don’t want to tack up and jump an oxer, you can find some amazing fashions, fun crafts, quality bags and farmer’s market specialties (I’ll get into the farmer’s market in my food review yet to come).

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We then watched the main event of the day, the $50,000 Clear Channel Hunter Derby. I love watching the hunters – I know many people love the thrill of the jumpers, but the smoothness and grace of the hunter horses really is something to see. Congrats to Patricia Griffith, on Black Label, who won the Derby!

Patricia Griffith on Black Label – Photo Courtesy of Chornicle of the Horse

Enjoy my pictures – fashion and food reviews to come!

xo

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Tack up your Table

Equestrian themed tables can be elegant and rustic at the same time. As I decorate my dining room, I want to add an equine touch without going overboard. I dropped in on my favorite local gift shop, Breeze,  where I pretty much have to lock my purse shut to prevent an inevitable purchase, and previewed this beautiful table runner by Le Jacquard Francaise.  If it had only matched my dining room, I would have taken it home.  Very subtle and tasteful.

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Le Jacquard Francais

Another way to add a touch of the equestrian spirit could be a simple equine centerpiece, or pour your favorite vintage out of this amazing decanter from Riedel.

Riedel Horse Decanter
Riedel Horse Decanter

So subtle and understated, it can be virtually used anywhere. This decanter would complement a formal dinner table or outdoor farm table equally.

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Hermes Attelage Flatware

Of course, the ultimate equestrian table dressing would be Hermes china, but short of dropping a small fortune on a single place setting, you can accent your table with just their flatware. I love the simplicity and hint of the horsey life. Put this on my Christmas list.

 

xo

l

Cashmere, leather and fur, oh my!

Photo Courtesy WWD.com Moncler FW2013
Photo Courtesy WWD.com
Moncler FW2013

I know that the RTW Spring 2014 shows just wrapped, however, I’m still trying to process RTW Fall 2013. I absolutely LOVE fall/winter clothes and just melt at the sight of an amazing cashmere wrap. This fall, there are almost too many luscious looks to list, however, I’m going to give it my best shot.

Texture upon texture upon texture.  Wovens with knits, plaids with stripes and sparkles on fur. This is truly an equal opportunity fall fashion season, and I LOVE it. My challenge is finding believable knock offs because I can’t even imagine the price tags on some of these pieces.

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Moncler deserves a slideshow all its own. Absolutely sumptuous….

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Now all I need is to move to the Arctic Circle so I can justify some of these pieces.

xo

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Monday Morning Shopping Trip: To Dream the Hermes Dream

I probably don’t have to tell you this, but Hermes makes some of the most beautiful items in the world. I think their bags are amazing, but as an equestrian, I cannot help but drool over more horsey items. In celebration of this week’s horse show in Bridgehampton (the Classic), I am listing some of my “if I had tons of money I would get these” items.

I cannot wait to see and feel their saddles in person when I got to their booth later this week.

Hermes produced a video named (in English) “Hearts and Crafts”. It’s a beautifully made short featuring the Hermes artisans and their craft. It helped me understand why their goods are so beautiful, durable and expensive.

xo

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to Classic or not to Classic?

Oye. I’m waiting for my media credentials to arrive in the mail so I can cover the Hamptons Classic in person. As a new blogger, I’m not sure I’ll be approved, but really…is there anyone who would appreciate the scene more?

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photo courtesy http://www.Hamptonclassic.com

I saw someone post today on Facebook that it wasn’t worth their time or money to attend (and this is from a horse lover).

Why did she get her Pikeurs all in a twist about this? True…traffic is a nightmare and hoards will descend upon a rural (yet sophisticated) area. True…the stands and streets will be filled with snooty dandies and fashionistas decked out in equestrian luxuries like Longines and Hérmes.

So what?
I say the Hamptons Classic is nothing but good. Good for the caterers and food vendors on the East End. Good for local retail. Good for hotels and inns. Good for any small business lucky to be along or even near Montauk Highway….and GREAT for equestrian sports and all us horsey types. I think if I had seen a horse show like this when I was young, I really would have been inspired to continue riding and not wait until, well, <cough> older to start again.

With the US Open, the start of football, and the ending of the baseball season, NY horse lovers should be thrilled with the heat of the media spotlight this time of year.

I, for one, am glued to my mailbox with the hopes of receiving a thick envelope. Geesh, I feel like I’m applying to college again. What do you think? Are you going to make it?

xo

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