By BETSY KELLEY | Photos by Jennie Condon
Sometimes I wonder at what point I turned in to one of those old ladies, telling young whippersnappers that they don’t know about REAL showing because they never had to sweat through and entire show day in a wool coat and pull on boots smashing the Velcro closure of your breeches into your ankle bone. (I have a running theory that we are all suffering some long-term nerve damage from that particular phenomenon, but that is neither here nor there.) With the introduction to technical fabrics in the show ring, there is NO reason to ever suffer through an uncomfortable show day again. Light, structured jackets with just enough stretch; show shirts with vented sleeves and breeches with sock bottoms are just a few of the game-changers on the market. The best part? These options are available in any budget. If you’re horse showing on a shoestring you can still look and feel like a pro, and if you’re not worried about cost you can own one in every color.
Enter my newest obsession: the Horseware Ladies Competition Jacket in Berry.
I love to stand out in the ring, and when I started showing my mare in dressage I knew that a black coat wasn’t going to satisfy me forever. If you were going to trap me in white breeches; I needed an outlet to make up for it. The first time I touched the Horseware Ladies Competition Jacket; I knew I needed to own one. The berry caught my eye immediately, the color was rich with the contrast piping adding an extra pop of color, and the textiles were high quality at a great price point.
FIT AND WEAR
Whether you are looking for a more traditional color (Black, Navy, Dark Navy, Forest Green) or ready to show off your wild side (Hydro Green, Berry) this soft shell jacket is ready to take you into the ring. Sturdy enough to give you a structured look, yet light and luxurious as meringue to wear. The Horseware Ladies Competition Jacket runs true to size with the perfect amount of stretch for full mobility (I am wearing a small in the photos) and I found the fit of the jacket to be outstanding.
It doesn’t matter if you are a rider on a budget or not; this is a quality show coat at a great price. I have been showered in compliments every time I have worn it out, including a note from the judge on my last dressage score. I will happily wear this coat in the Dressage or Hunter ring, as the cut and quality balance the “fun” color and leave you with a polished, professional look that won’t go unnoticed in the ring. CLICK HERE to shop online for your very own!