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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Railshirts and Half Chaps and Breeches, OH MY!

If you've ever tried to show horses when you're not a svelte, trim little thing, you've been there. You walk into the local outfitters store and are faced with rack after rack of the season's latest fashion. You check the price tags, and of course, they're all quite steep... then you start to check the sizing tags. Shuffling through the rack, you are nearly to the back by the time you find something that might come within a few sizes of even fitting you and it's an awful colour, and probably last year's style, too. Trying it on, you look a bit like a stuffed sausage. The colour is wrong, the style is wrong, the price tag is ASTRONOMICAL, and you hate the way you look - but you buy it because you have no choice.

That was the story of MY life when I was growing up showing - as I've mentioned, I've always been a fat girl, and I went through many, many, many seasons of "settling" on what I could find that even came close to fitting me because that was all there was available. I almost always paid TOO MUCH for something I hated and was even sometimes embarrassed to wear. It definitely doesn't boost your self esteem or confidence, let me tell you that!

The wonderful thing about the internet is the plethora of resources right at your fingertips (like this blog, for example!). All of a sudden, you have access... and what a wonderful thing it is!

In this entry, I've compiled a list of websites that offer tack, clothing and accessories for plus sized riders. I don't have personal consumer experience with each and every company, but I thought I would at least put them up there and if you've had a good experience, you can say so in the comments. If you have other sites to link, put them in the comments and I will add them to the entry!

Riding & Show Clothing and Apparel

Happy Horse Designs (up to size 28 in custom rail shirts and showmanship tunics)*
1824 Plus Size Collections from Equestrian Collections
Saddle Bums Riding Pants (Up to size 2XL)
Arete Saddlery (they have 4XL sized half chaps!)
Maryland Saddlery (Plus sized english and foxhunting attire!)
Smart Pak Equine (carries the "Fuller Fillies" label)
Toby's Western Wear (up to 3XL western tops and tunics)
Horse & Rider Etc (english apparel, including boots with extra width in the calves and (especially exciting for me) larger foot sizes!)



*In the interest of full disclosure, "Happy Horse Designs" is my mom's sewing business. She does a circuit of trade fairs in the Maritime provinces and ships orders all over the world. Oh, and the website isn't finished because that's my job and I am a slacker!


Bras



X-Chrom Plus Size Horseback Riding Bras

ENell Sports Bra

I would love, love, love to find some websites where you can order saddles with 20" seats, etc - if you have links for any of those, PLEASE post them in the comments or email me - seeking(dot)sendiri(at)gmail(dot)com! :)




30 comments:

  1. Thank you for this!!! I've struggled with the same issues, and I hear you loud and clear. Imagine how delighted I was when I walked into my local tack shop and they had XL-4X size half chaps by Perri. Awesome!

    Also, I am loving my 2x Kerrits winter riding breeches. I wear a size 18/20 and I wasn't sure they would fit okay since most riding wear tends toward the small size but it fits great, even over my bubble butt!

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  2. I think you have officially won the prize for quickest comment on a new entry, EVER. :)

    Thanks for the brand mentions!

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  4. Thanks so much for the lists! One other website I've found that carries a few plus size breeches is Victorycanter.com, and they are usually very affordable. I bought 3 pairs for around $60 once!

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  5. I really appreciate what you are doing for the plus size riding community!!!! Keep up the good work!!

    :)


    I too would like to see if anyone knows where I can get a 19-20" saddle :)


    Take Care!

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  6. I had a hell of a time finding field boots! http://tailsofagradstudent.blogspot.com/2009/12/boot-blunders.html
    But finally was able to order some without having to get them custom (BC I could NOT afford them if I had to get custom!).

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  7. Ohhh - excited about the half-caps from Arete!!! Thanks Amanda!!!

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  8. Thanks for the links!

    Duett lets your order 19" and 20" saddles: http://duettsaddles.com/prices.htm


    There's also a lot of good resources in this thread: http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/showthread.php?t=60308

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  9. Thank you Amanda for these great resources! I love reading your blog!

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  10. I've been following your blog for a few weeks now and was hoping for a list like this. I don't know about 20 inch saddles but I just bought my first english saddle which was a 19 inch saddle from dover saddley. I found breeches that fit me and even had to get a smaller size than I originally thought from Boinks (wear a size 24 in street clothes). I'm having more of a problem with jackets and shirts with having a large chest. I bought a jacket 3 sizes larger than normal (still doesn't fit my chest right) and plan to have it tailored to fit correctly. I'm completely ignoring field boots right now and plan to show with half chaps in my local schooling shows.

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    1. My dressage saddle is a Thornhill Vienna II they go up to a size 20" very comfortable saddle.

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  11. ...and if you sew you can buy plus size patterns at suitability.com

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  12. Dover has jods. I was just looking at some that go to 3x! According to the sizing chart I should be in a 2x which sort of surprised me. Reviews seem positive with even one plus sized (for sure) reviewer.

    Now if only they'd understand that sometimes "fat" comes in tall. And really, I'd like something a bit more fun like the brown ones.

    Thanks for the list.

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  13. I need that bra information. Thanks!

    Oh and I have given you two awards on my site. Happy Award and Beautiful Blogger. http://fearlessriding.blogspot.com/

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  14. Thank you for this blog! I just found it today and love it and you! Can't wait to read more:)

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  15. NEVER EVER EVER order from Arete Saddlery. Their customer service STINKS. They are extremely slow to ship, and chances are they will get your order wrong somehow. Their size chart is off, so you will start off ordering the wrong size, and then you will spend two months trying to get the correct item in replacement, and finally you will give up and contact your credit card company about getting your money back because you're tired of dealing with them.

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  16. Firstly I enjoy your views and the information you frequently share! I also have the same problem with Horse Riding Chaps especially. Keep posting!

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  17. I am getting back into riding after many years. I live in Australia and let me tell you there is extremely limited choice for anything related to plus size riders here. I have ordered all my equestrian clothing online from overseas. I have somewhat "grown out" of my 17.5 inch Stubben saddle from my teenage years and I have recently ordered a 20 inch Companion Trail Saddle from Duett in the US.Looking forward to receiving it. Will let you know how it goes accomodating my plus size backside. By the way my name is Bronwyn and my horse, a Friesian/TB cross gelding looks just like the "fat horse" at the top of this blog!

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  18. I'm so happy to find this site. I have spent hours trying to find english riding clothes that my middle-aged fuller figure.

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  19. wow---great site---not only for plus size but overweight nearly 60 yr old ladies with saggy baggy features but still want to show against the rail thin youngsters!!! BTW, you can probabably have a saddle made for the size you need for reasonable prices...check out Elite Custom Saddles
    ELITE CUSTOM SADDLES Raimundo Blanco is a master saddle maker for over 30 years. For the last 17 years he was the master saddle's maker for Sergeant's Silver Mesa. Tioga, TX elitesaddles.com


    and if you like billy cook, those saddle makers also make saddles at very reasonable prices
    by Sulphur River Saddlery of Talco Texas. 903-632-5458
    http://theranchhorse.com/sulphurriversaddlery.aspx

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  20. Thanks for the site. I would love to see your Moms work. Hope you can get the site up soon.

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  21. i need a set of plus size western show chaps. i wear about a 22/24 in jeans n i cant find any chaps that fit and i cant afford custom chaps :( HELP!!!

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  22. i need the same as your britt! I have all plus size english gear, but am switching my pony to western:) Also for the best bras i found is this sight http://essentialbodywear.com/ you will fit in your show jackets sooo much better. I have 2 of there sports bras and my girls do not even bounce (which is saying alot because i'm a 40D.

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  23. It is another symbol of Indian power dressing. Although the uses of Jodhpur breeches are many, it is the main riding apparel as well as the main item of Equestrian clothing, hunting clothing

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  24. I have a whole other problem. If I were just a big girl that would be fine but...Im also very short. Apparently clothing manufactuers think that if you are an XL your arms need to hang to the ground and/or you need to be 6'5". I need half chaps that are a childs size in length (14") and an adult in calf width (15). Nowhere have I found anyone that does custum outside the usual box sizes. I sure could use some advice.

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    1. Perri's leather has a huge range of sizes for their Zip Half Chaps

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  25. Found this on a whim and would like to let you know that we sell plus sized couture show clothing at Lisa Nelle Show Clothing. You can see our plus sized line by visiting the website www.lisanelle.com

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  26. Back into riding in my mid40s after nearly 20 years of other dealing with other people' s stuff. Started hunting with hounds this winter on my beloved Clydesdale xTB and having more fun than I could have imagined. Thanks for your site, enormously helpful and encouraging.

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  27. I could use some help!
    I'm not sure about the sizing of breeches and i have never bough them! What would a size 42 breech normally be size wise? Thanks!!(:

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  28. Thanks a bunch for this blog!! Been out of riding for a few years use to be size 12 now find it extremely hard to find a size 18/20 jacket. It's so refreshing to see I'm not the only one that has sizing issues. :D And a major boost of encouragement that I don't have to be size skinny minny to get back into the saddle again :D

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