Are you bold or conservative?

As I’ve been buying a few of the things we need for our new eventing adventure, mostly dressage stuff, I’ve been faced with a few choices. Back when I evented forever ago there weren’t a whole lot of options… black or navy coat, black velvet helmet, tan or white breeches, a plain stock tie, white saddle pad, etc etc. If you wanted to be bold you put a clincher browband on your bridle, wore gray breeches, and had piping on your saddle pad. I just don’t remember there being a whole lot of other things to choose from. Granted those were the days before there were so many online stores, lots of social media, and more liberal fashion trends.

For the most part my choices so far have been more conservative for dressage. No fancy browband, all black tack, and a plain white saddle pad. I have a couple of logo pads for xc and sj, white shirt and navy vest for me, navy bonnet for the pony. No crazy colored helmet covers or horse boots or anything like that.

I am not cute enough to get away with this outfit.

nor am I chipper enough to pull off this much yellow

I did have a little bit of fun with the colors on my coat… black with french blue lapels and white piping. The only other place I could think of to have a little bit of fun, and breathe a little life into my otherwise dreadfully boring dressage look, was my stock tie.

We’ve probably all seen the folks with cream colored stocks, pattered stocks, and satin stocks.


Some of them are a bit TOO bold for me, but I love the look of piping so I decided to spend the $5 more and have one made to coordinate with my coat. It’s a white pattered tone on tone fabric, has black piping around neck, and some blue and black piping around the loop. A little more fun than plain white but not too out there.

stock1 stock2

What do you think of having a little bit more fun with what is generally a very conservative look, like in the dressage or hunter ring? What about something “looser” like jumpers or XC? Are you a super conservative traditionalist or braver and bolder? And if you like to spice things up a bit, what do you prefer: more fun tack, more fun rider clothing, or both?

30 thoughts on “Are you bold or conservative?

  1. I was a little all over the place. I was always very traditional in dressage, with all black tack, white saddle pad (with black piping), white breeches, and a plain black coat. XC and SJ were different stories though, and I was the lunatic in neon pink/green or purple/turquiose.

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  2. I am boring to the max. The craziest I got apparel wise was FITS breeches which I now hate with a passion because they rub me. Tack wise I consdier myself adventurous with a burgundy saddle pad so… I’m the definition of boring. I don’t like bling as you know and I am not big on color. Though shades of blue are acceptable. I need for there to be a bonnet sale so I can get Huey one. I do spice up my life with belts now… But when it comes to most things I prefer your blacks, Greys, navy’s, Browns, and other earth boring colors. Good post! Some teeny eventers are the cutest!

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    1. I’m kinda thinking about using my hot pink C4 belt as a neck strap on XC so I’m not TOTALLY boring. Yet another plain bay horse wearing navy and white. #boringgirlproblems

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  3. Love the look of that stock tie!

    I was somewhat traditional with my dressage tack, white saddle pad with black and silver piping, silver rhinestone browband (I had a mare then I could get away with it!)

    The last time I went cross country was back in my pony club days- about 12 or 13 years old. Needless to say, I would NEVER wear now what we did then- hot pink polos and pink and purple leopard saddle pad or pink flame saddle pad with purple bell boots!

    When I showed in the jumpers this past summer we were pretty traditional- white and black monogrammed saddle pad, black eskadron boots and black polo with tan breeches.

    In the hunter ring, I am more open to different show jacket colors and complimenting show shirts, I play around with grays, tans and browns depending on what color horse I am wearing.

    In the equitation ring, I like to stick with white show shirt and navy jacket- clean classic look.

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  4. I would LIKE to wear more cool colors for XC and SJ, but the pony looks really, really good in navy. Plus with him being a bright chestnut there aren’t many options to begin with. I did wear a neon yellow shirt under my navy vest at the last HT, though. Dressage is black & white only… it feels wrong to wear colors in dressage.

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  5. I am the most boring person in the world these days. In dressage, I wear white breeches, a white shirt, a white stock tie (that isn’t pre-tied), and a black coat. I wear the same outfit for show jumping, except with tan breeches. On XC, it’s tan breeches, a royal blue shirt, a black XC vest, black boots on the horse, and a black saddle pad with royal blue piping.

    Years and years ago when I was 12 or so I rocked a tie-dye polo shirt (with no safety vest, because it wasn’t required!) and hunter green/white helmet cover (with a bow) with a hunter green saddle pad and navy splint boots. #YOLO?

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  6. I progressively got fancier over the years. Currently I have a shad with gray points instead of yellow with gray on the collar and my helmet has a matching grey stripe. My stock pin is “opal” crystals (basically just looks pink) and my browband is an obnoxious V one with the same crystals. Other than that I have plain black tack, plan white pad (although I would love gray piping to match the gray in my outfit), white breeches/shirt/gloves. I think it looks just fancy enough without being majorly overboard.

    That being said, I totally want polka dot stock tie…

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  7. I’ll do whatever for schooling at home, but for lessons, clinics, or shows, only white saddle pads and other boring stuff. I’d go nuts for a costume party or something, but I wouldn’t do anything unconventional at a show. Too many dressage judges hate it. And in the jumper ring, my home, I still want to look clean and neat. To each their own though.

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  8. My blog is named Eventing in Color for a reason….we rock the hot pink, the bold blue, the zebra stripes, etc. To me, the fun colors bring out the childlike joy horses bring us.

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  9. I prefer to go as traditional as possible; my tack is all in white or black, and if I really have no choice but to do a colour I tend to stick with royal blue. This is mostly because my stuff gets used on multiple horses and those colours go well with virtually any coat.
    That said, I like to express just a bit of individuality by having my horse’s name embroidered on its saddle pad or clipping a cross onto its flank or shoulder.

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  10. I’ve been a traditional girl in the past, but I’m branching out. Nothing tooooo crazy as of yet, though! Traditional black and white just look so classy!

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  11. A mix of both. Always classic for dressage. Maybe a browband difference, but really, KISS.

    XC, go all out if you can pull it off! I love it! I have been Blue/white forever and now need a new vest so maybe I will switch up my colors a bit now…I cant decide. Its so much fun!

    SJ, Classy, but I like to maybe wear a bonnet with matching bells, or a pad that’s not white. De fnot the place for fun crazy colors though.

    Schooling, I try to match polos with a color in my clothes, or the saddle pad. I don’t know why, I just like to. Or I will match boots with the color tack I have, black dressage, brown jumping.

    I’m IN LOVE with those stock ties though…

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  12. I don’t have much stuff lol, but I’m not super traditionalist. I prefer to keep it on the down low for dressage, and stadium I prefer to keep niceish, but I rather like crazy colors (aka black and yellow) for XC. If I were eventing a different horse, I probably would have really boring colors, but I landed myself with Bat and got an excuse for all new stuff lol.

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  13. i’m pretty conservative all around – mostly bc i don’t think my riding skills are enough to pull off a bolder look yet. tho i do love the subtle bling of my brass browband 🙂

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  14. Omg. That polka-dotted stock tie. Be still my heart…

    My style is pretty conservative. I would love to switch all of my white stuff over to a nice pale yellow cream (think Arthur and Allison Springer’s look at Rolex a few years ago). I think that looks super stunning on a chestnut.

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  15. Im sure you can gather from my blog I am farrrr from conservative but I still like things neat! Navy dressage coat and helmet, cream stock tie with blue polka dots…grey breeches…and for xc I go allll out!

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  16. I’m an artist so there’s not a conservative bone in my body, and my grey mares rock purple and turquoise. I really want a grey dressage coat with sky blue on the collar. My dressage pads are grey or black with piping/trim in my colors, and my others are fun, crystal browbands, etc. I have purple soft grip reins that I love. I tone it down a lot, but I’m still me and I always get complimented on my turnout.

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