EQUO’s Anna Dulin Talks Passion, Endurance, and Fashion

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Find this article and more HERE inside TPH’s 2017 Fall Fashion Issue!  

EQUO co-founder Anna Dulin knew from an early age that her passion was in the barn- riding and caring for the horses that brought her comfort and strength in what she describes as a challenging childhood.

“From an early age, I realized that my only true place in this world was with horses. Perhaps my earliest memory was when I was five or six and cried because I had to miss a horse show to go to a birthday party,” explains Dulin. “By the time that I was in junior high, this passion had cemented itself. I was a rebel growing up, but in the barn, none of the pressures of adolescence mattered. There was no pressure to perform, only a love for my equine partner and a drive to teach the horse and push myself to improve step by step every day.”

Now, Dulin looks back on her riding career with pride and gratitude. She has successfully parlayed a passion for the horses and clothing into an equestrian lifestyle company, EQUO, that claims a number of amateur and professional riders as fans, as well as A-list Hollywood celebrities.

Dulin and her husband, Andrew Filipowski, founded the company with the goal of bringing high-quality, technologically advanced lifestyle attire and accessories to a fervent demographic of equestrian professionals and amateur enthusiasts whose hectic and demanding schedules create a need for apparel that translates seamlessly from the barn to the street.

As a working mom and lifelong rider who grew up on a horse farm, Dulin knows first hand the demands of balancing the busy schedules of career, parenting, and equestrian. It was this personal experience, combined with her drive for success, that led her to find a solution to this common struggle.

“We have found a unique space in the market,” explains Dulin. “While the equestrian market is very large, it’s also quite segmented. Our goal is to build a premium line of lifestyle and athleisure equestrian wear that will allow our customers to feel their best- whether they’re training at the barn or running errands between meetings or extracurricular activities.”

Launched in 2016, EQUO brands itself as a premium “barn life” brand, catering to women’s, men’s, and junior’s apparel. The clothing balances the demands of the ring with the social style and premium quality that their customers expect. From inception, the team has developed a series of stylish, yet practical, pieces that transition from training and barn work to everyday life. Each new piece that is introduced to market undergoes rigorous testing by a team of equestrian ambassadors who provide feedback at every step of the design and manufacturing process. Prototypes are tested in both the schooling ring and in social and professional settings.

“I am truly proud of the line we created,” adds co-founder Andrew Filipowski. “Perhaps the sun shirts are our favorite piece, because they address a lot of the issues that similar products on the market do not.”

Equally inspirational to Dulin is the authenticity of both her brand and the team behind it. “All of our team members have their own ties to the ring,” she adds. “We have all worked tremendously hard over our lifetimes to support our passion and love for horses, and we all understand the unique bond between a rider and her partner.”

The line, which includes a range of apparel, from riding pants to sun shirts, caps, hoodies and more, hopes to continue to expand their line in the coming seasons. The company has plans to launch a competition line for both men and women, as well as a children’s line. These goals, according to Dulin, come after a lifetime of preparation to compete and succeed. “I’ve had to overcome a number of obstacles in my lifetime, and I’ve learned a number of valuable lessons in the face of adversity. These lessons and principles have guided me through every step of my career,” she explains. “I’ve learned that sometimes, the best strategy is to accept that certain goals are impossible. Also, it’s important to set attainable goals and fight with every breath you have to achieve them. I’ve also learned the importance of loyalty – to my husband, to my horses, and to the staff, ambassadors and fans that have worked incredibly hard with me to build the brand we have today.”

These life lessons, she adds, offer as much insight for small business owners and adults as well as young riders who may be facing their own uphill battles. Hard work and perseverance carry tremendous weight These life lessons, she adds, offer as much insight for small business owners and adults as well as young riders who may be facing their own uphill battles. Hard work and perseverance carry tremendous weight in building a path to success – both in and out of the ring.

“My advice for young riders would be – don’t get caught up in ribbons, and don’t get caught up in finances. This sport is as much about bonding with your partner and experiencing the thrill of that bond as it is about awards,” Dulin advises. “Love your horse, love the learning process, and take steps and set goals every day to perfect yourself.”

For fellow female entrepreneurs, Dulin has similar words of advice: “Start, and function. No matter how tired, confused, or overwhelmed you are, the most important step you can take is your first – because you can never get to the finish line without crossing the starting line.”

Perhaps her most important piece of advice applies equally to all: ignore the naysayers, block out the doubts, and use the negativity as a driving force to push harder and improve yourself.

To learn more about EQUO, or to shop their product line, visit equo-us.com.

 

 

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EQUO’s product COLLECTION

Women’s Schooling Pant: The ultimate saddle to sofa experience.Our thoughtfully designed Schooling Pant perfectly blends the equestrian life with everything else you have going on. The forgiving fold over waistband is finished on both edges to prevent “ride up”, and provide an adjustable flattering fit.The grip extends further up the leg to give you grip where it really counts, while remaining chic and subdued. The fabric is not only comfortable, leaving you feeling like your wearing your most comfy pajamas, but also breaths, and prevents odor and the growth of unwanted bacteria, fungi and mold. At EQUO we only use the latest technology and high-performance fabrics to let you look good while being the athlete that you are. These schooling pants feature: MAX-DRI moisture management technology: A quick dry fabric, that keeps the skin dry to increase endurance in the ring or around town.MICROBlok anti microbial technology: Prevents odor and growth of bacteria, fungi, and mold, for a healthier and more hygienic active lifestyle.EQtek grip: Our grip has been designed to maximize surface area as well as the coefficient of friction. You’ll stay on your teammate no matter your discipline. $199.99

 

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Competition Coverup – Finding a Distance: Who hasn’t had anxiety finding a distance? We have all been there – that moment when you see the perfect distance, and then you don’t. This coverup is made of a super soft viscose blend, and is loose and flowy in fit. The wide neckline is perfect for throwing on over your helmet to keep your competition clothes clean between classes. The coverup can also be worn alone, or over anything you like. $49.99

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Light Weight Hoodie: Perfect for those cool mornings while warming up with your partner. Our lightweight hoodie has an updated collar for the perfect athleisure look, both in and out of the barn. The cotton blend fabric is super soft and stretchy, while being cozy at the same time. This hoodie was designed to not be cumbersome while training with your teammate. If you prefer a more relaxed, true hoodie fit, we recommend ordering one size up. $79.99

 

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Barn Hat: Show your love for the BARNLIFE by sporting our new and stylish hat. Available in three fun an versatile colors that go with any outfit, whether at the barn, around town, or at a competition. $24.99.

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Equestrian Long Sleeve Shirt: Show your love of the sport. This might just be the most comfortable shirt that exists. The ultra-soft cotton blend fits perfectly, and the sleeves are long enough for anyone. The bust of the shirt is ready for your own personal touches, from your barn or school logo, to anything else you might desire. Perfect for layering under a vest or a sweater. This is also a great option for male athletes or horse show parents due to its relaxed fit. $39.99.

SunShirt for Women (not shown): Finally the perfect sunshirt. After dozens of prototypes we have created the perfect sunshirt. One that is designed to flatter instead of flaunt any flaws. Utilizing proprietary materials this new marvel will keep you 10 degrees cooler no matter where you are. Like all of our items comfort, style, and functionality droveus to create what we consider the perfect sunshirt. Once you try it on we know you will agree with us! $99.99.

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Saddle Pad – Exclusive offer to our Ambassador’s and Sponsored Athletes: We know how quickly you go through saddle pads. Purchase additional EQUO Saddle Pads to show your love for our gear while schooling, competing or just on the trails. Durable, economical and available in EQUO’s stylish colors, this Quilted Cotton Pad will be the daily favorite of you and your teammate. This all-purpose pad has
a soft cotton top and bottom with foam/poly fill inner cushioning and attractive 1.5″ diamond quilting in self-colored thread. Cut with a slight contour at the front to accommodate your saddle flap, it has billet and girth loops to keep it in place. This saddle pad holds up to the
rigors of everyday schooling and repeated washings – you’ll want one in every color! Measures 22″ x 36″. 35% cotton/65% poly. $39.99.

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