FROM THE PUBLISHER Sarah in Paris
OUT & ABOUT
WEC – Ocala 2022 Summer Series
Lindsey Schulz and Schulz Collection
OUT & ABOUT
Longines Global Champions Tour Paris
| OUT & ABOUT
ECCO FEI World Championships Herning
BETWEEN THE LINES
OUT & ABOUT
Giant Steps Charity Classic
Shine Bright Like a Diamond
OUT & ABOUT
WEC – Ohio Spring & Summer Shows
| STYLE RIDER
| GRAZE & SIP Picnic Perfect
| BEHIND THE BRAND RIATA Designs
A Romantic Grooms’ Wedding –Bridgerton Style
| STYLE PROFILES
| ON THE COVER
The Saut Hermès 2022
| OUT & ABOUT Saut Hermès
| BARN ENVY
The Best Trends in 2022 Barns
H & S HOME
A Modern Interpretation of Classic English Equestrian
CURATED BY AN EQUESTRIAN
Becoming Ellen Skidmore
A Kentucky Treasure
OUT & ABOUT
Split Rock Jumping Tour Kentucky
NEW PRODUCT ALERT
Equestrianism Meets Artificial Intelligence
OUT & ABOUT
Sonoma Horse Park Spring Classic I & II
The Many Mounts of Amanda Gomez
CATIE’S COMMENTARY WEC Wonderland
OUT & ABOUT
Sonoma Horse Park Summer Classic
ASK DR. CARRIE
BEHIND THE LENS Andrée-Anne Brunet
CAN YOU STAND IT?
© 2022 HORSE & STYLE MAGAZINE
PUBLISHER & EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Sarah Appel email@example.com
Emily Pollard firstname.lastname@example.org
COPYEDITOR Pam Maley
Laurie Berglie, Pam Maley, Nelina Loiselle, Annie Heise-Alden, Helen Abrams, Lila Gendal, Lauren Kee, Sarah Welk Baynum, Jump Media, Amanda Mactas, Catie Staszak, Lindsay Brock, Terri Roberson, Psy. D., Carrie Wicks, Ph. D.
Christophe Tanière, Jessica Rodrigues, Nathalie Baetens, Andrée-Anne Brunet, Alden Corrigan Media, Ashley Neuhof, Victoria Heer, Winslow Photography, Andrew Ryback Photography, Alison Elefante, Georgina Preston, Kind Media, Kristin Lee, Lindsey Long Photography, Brooke Marie Photography, Grand Pix Photography, Entrigue Consulting,Victoria Beardslee, Isabel Kurek, Juan Luis, and courtesy of B & D Builders, Ellen Skidmore, RIATA Designs, the Headley-Whitney Museum, Pivo
ON THE COVER:
Kevin Staut and Mount Cheppetta, winners of the CSI5* Grand Prix Hermès at the 2022 Saut Hermès in Paris, France; photo © Christophe Tanière
Horse & Style Magazine TM is an equestrian lifestyle publication that is published three times per year and available at participating tack shops nationwide for $10, and while supplies last at large training centers and hunter jumper horse shows. The written and visual contents of this magazine are protected by copyright. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher is legally prohibited.
Copyright © 2022 Horse & Style Magazine LLC.
Emily Pollard uses her BA in English from Saint Mary’s College of California to teach, write, and edit. She has worked in the equestrian industry for the majority of her life, as a groom, assistant trainer, barn manager, and everything in between. She trained and competed her horse, Skyler Ace, to the FEI level. She now enjoys sharing her passion for horses with her husband and two young daughters.
Danielle Demers lives on the coast of Maine with her husband and son. A lifelong equestrian, she has always been inspired by horses. After graduating with a BFA in Painting, she worked to find a way to combine her passions for art, design, and the equestrian lifestyle. Through her artwork, and as H&S ’s Art Director, her interests have been melded together more perfectly than she could have imagined.
An avid former foxhunter, Pam knows well that special bond between horse and rider. With her husband she was co-owner of Dunford Farm, a Thoroughbred farm in Lexington, Kentucky, where she was involved in every aspect of the horses’ lives. Her journey with horses continues as a as Copyeditor and Contributing Writer for H&S She has a BA in English and History from Vanderbilt University.
Lauren Allen is a graphic designer and a lifelong equestrian who lives on a small ranch in Oklahoma with her husband and daughter. Her passion for horses and painting began at an early age and inspired her to create a company where she could combine both. She specializes in helping clients find unique and creative ways to grow their businesses. Learn more at seehorsedesign.com.
Laurie Berglie lives in the Maryland countryside where she enjoys renovating her fixer-upper farm, reading horse books, and competing in the hunters. Laurie is also an author of equestrian fiction and maintains her lifestyle blog and Instagram, “Maryland Equestrian.”
She has a BA in English from Stevenson University and an MA in Humanities from Towson University.
Helen Abrams lives in Los Angeles where she works as a marketing executive in the television industry. In her spare time, she competes as an amateur at California's A-Circuit shows. Helen is also the founder and CEO of Life Equestrian, a marketing company for riders and equestrian enthusiasts. With Life Equestrian, Helen brings together her business expertise with her lifelong passion for equine trends, products and safety.
After a successful run of her limited equestrian capsule Two Bits Equestrian, Annie decided to shift her perspective and help others hone their aesthetics and realize their design dreams. She is now a full-time design consultant specializing in high-end residential homes. When she is not working or riding, she loves traveling and gleaning new inspiration for her entrepreneurial endeavors. anniealdendesign.com
Terri Roberson, Psy.D.
A licensed clinical psychologist, Terri Roberson combines her passion for horses with her clinical work in equine-assisted psychotherapy. She currently sits on the board of Giant Steps Therapeutic Equestrian Center. Over 25 years on the show circuit has given her an eye for equestrian style and provides constant inspiration for her frequent contributions to H&S.
Lila Gendal is a 3* event rider based in New England and Ocala, FL. She trains and competes her own Irish conn x TB gelding, Rollo who only stands at 15.3 and has taken her to some of the biggest competitions of her life. Lila rides and trains event horses for a living and if she’s not on a horse she’s either by the ocean or writing! Lila graduated from the University of Vermont in 2010 with a degree in political science.
Sarah Welk Baynum
Sarah Welk Baynum has been a working student, show groom, barn manager, worked for FarmVet and other various jobs in the horse industry both in her hometown and in Wellington & Ocala, Florida. Sarah attended Otterbein University and majored in Equine Business & Facility Management. Sarah has a preference for spicy mares, owns two of them, and competes in show jumping and eventing. Sarah is also an author of Equestrian Fiction books.
Lindsay, owner of Lindsay Brock LLC, is a writer, photographer, and social media guru from Saugerties, NY. A Houghton College graduate, Lindsay studied Writing and Communications, while riding on the hunter/jumper and eventing teams. When not at a horse show, behind a camera lens or fervently Instagramming, you can find her astride her Zangersheide gelding, Justice Z.
Amanda Mactas is a freelance writer based in New York City, who covers all things food, travel and lifestyle. In addition to Horse & Style, her work has appeared in Forbes, PureWow, Wine4Food, Greatist, and BELLA Magazine, where she currently serves as the Food, Travel and Accessories Editor. Keep up with her work @ManhattanTwist.Danielle Demers Lauren Allen Amanda Mactas Annie Heise-Alden photo © JXB
Dr. Carrie Wicks divides her time between her private sport psychology consulting and family therapy practice, traveling with athletes, and writing. She completed her doctorate in psychology while researching the mental practices of equestrian athletes. Her passions include horses, yoga, mountain biking, skiing, and time in nature with animals.
Join us for our annual 12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS giveaway event!
Catie Staszak is the CEO of Catie Staszak Media, Inc. and the color commentator and journalist for the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ NAL. Catie has announced at showjumping events across the globe and represented some of the sport's top athletes and operations. When she's not working, she's enjoying time with her superhero horse Zantos, whom she shows in the jumpers, and her dog/sidekick, Omaha.
“12 Days of Christmas” is the giveaway event that we look forward to hosting each year, and, every year, this exciting lead-up to Christmas features everything from riding apparel, to artwork, to event tickets! The “12 Days of Christmas” giveaway is promoted in the magazine and across our social media accounts. If you are an equestrian business owner, we would love to have you join us this season!
Email email@example.com to learn how your product can be featured in this popular giveaway!
Ashley Neuhof has rapidly become one of the most sought-after photographers on the worldwide equestrian circuit, known for her uncanny ability to capture exquisite moments both in the arena and behind the scenes. Her images have been commissioned by top brands and are published frequently in luxury lifestyle magazines worldwide.Ashley Neuhof
FROM the publisher
SARAH IN PA R IS
If you are a loyal reader of Horse & Style, you know there are a few things we love more than anything: horses, fashion, horse shows, and Paris. While we fully admit there are many other spectacular horse shows in magnificent cities all over the world, our heart, and certainly my heart, belongs to Paris and the Saut Hermès.
After a two year COVID-19 break, H&S was fortunate to travel back to the magical city for the 2022 Saut Hermès. Currently on a short hiatus from the Grand Palais, the 2022 Saut Hermès was at the Petite Palais, just a few French plies away from the Eiffel Tower. When I landed in Paris with my good friend and fellow equestrian Annie Heise-Alden, my excitement was through the roof and my jet lag immediately dissipated as we switched into Paris mode. Watching through Annie’s eyes, a Saut Hermès and Parisian newbie, was almost as good as seeing it for the first time. Read more on our Saut Hermès adventure in our cover story on page 54.
Why go to Paris once, when you can go twice? After the Saut Hermès, I was lucky enough to travel back to Paris during summer with my mother Terri and my two daughters, Ella and Piper. The girls had never been to Paris, and as self-proclaimed Paris experts, my mother and I enjoyed introducing my daughters to the Parisian lifestyle. While our trip wasn’t all centered around horses, we did manage to experience the GCT Paris Masters. Don’t miss the Out & About covering this exciting event on page 14.
As always, we have so much amazing content, but I want to point out something a little unique and not to be missed in this issue. If (but really, I know we all do) you enjoy the Bridgerton series on Netflix, and the books by author Julia Quinn, just go ahead and flip right to page 42 for the most incredible photography spread by creative powerhouses Victoria Heer, Nelina Loiselle, and Megan Lentz. The trio have made our Bridgerton dreams come to life with a grooms wedding shoot, A Romantic Grooms’Wedding –Bridgerton Style, and it is so good.
Another article with pictures to make you swoon is our Barn Envy:The Best Trends in 2022 Barns, seen on page 66. The pictures of reclaimed wood, breezy stall windows, open aisleways, and tack rooms you can entertain in will have you dreaming about building your own barn by the time you finish the article. Between this article and A Romantic Grooms’Wedding – Bridgerton Style, your equestrian eye-candy quota should be met.
I don’t know when I will get the opportunity to travel abroad again, so until then, I will dream of perfectly baked baguettes, crisp rose, and sweet macaroons that can only be that perfect in one place – Paris!A Bientot (as the French say), Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Sarah Appel in Paris with her daughters Ella (left) and Piper (right)
LEADING SCIENCE IN BONE INTEGRITY
Did you know horses without access to fresh pasture can lose bone density in just 7-10 days?
Vitamins K1 and K2 found in fresh green grass are critical to the function of osteocalcin which supports bone density and healthy bone formation.
Horses with limited access to high quality pasture are likely deficient in vitamin K which can result in a loss of bone density and increase the risk for bone related disorders and injury.
BONAFIDE® contains the patented active ingredient Quinaquanone®, a water-soluble and bioavailable form of vitamin K1 and K2 which improves overall bone density and strength.
WEC – OCALA 2022 SUMMER SERIES – OCALA, FL
1. More than just the diamonds shine in Ocala: Hunter Holloway and Pepita Con Spita fly over the Lugano Diamonds jump, taking home second after going clear in the $140,000 Lugano Diamonds FEI CSI3* Grand Prix 2. Santiago Lambre and Pampero jump big to win the $37,000 Speed Challenge CSI3* 3. Andrew Bourns and Darquito show their top form in the FEI classes, including the $50,000 Coca-Cola Beverages Florida FEI CSI3* Welcome Prix 4. Accomplished hunter and show jumping rider, Daniel Geitner of Aiken, South Carolina rides Fazous over the World Equestrian Center jump 5. The USA dominated the $100,000 MARS Equestrian National Grand Prix, taking all places on the podium with Daniel Geitner and November Hill’s Vesta De Lavardin snagging first placePhotos © Andrew Ryback Photography
6. Australia’s Lauren Balcomb and her longtime mount, Verdini D’Houtveld Z, are victorious in the $140,000 Lugano Diamonds FEI CSI3* Grand Prix 7. We love an ode to David Rose with a black and white look… Erynn Ballard and Oquido Van Het Eikehof are looking chic as they sail to success in the Buckeye Nutrition Futures Prix 1.35M 8. The stands are packed as Todd Minikus aboard Amex Z clears the impossibly wide oxer 9. Lauren Balcomb and her own 11-year-old Zangersheide gelding Verdini D’Houtveld Z celebrate their $140,000 Lugano Diamonds FEI CSI3* Grand Prix win. Only five pairs of an original field of 31 advanced to the jump-off after riding course designer Guilherme Jorge’s (BRA) original track 10. Evan M. Coluccio and Hampton Green Farm LLC’s Valdes Z put on a show on for the crowd after his win in the $140,000 Coca-Cola Beverages Florida FEI CSI3* Grand Prix 11. Alberto Michan and Nabal De Trivera show great form over a jump with plush greenery
A creative at her core, Lindsey Schulz was born and raised in Northern California and moved to Los Angeles in 2007 to attend Otis College of Art and Design and CalArts. Inspired by her time as a dressage rider and born of both inspiration and necessity, Lindsey launched her own line of elegant boot, helmet and groom bags with the 1912 collection. From a Metis system which effortlessly attaches the helmet bag to the boot bag, or the removable insert for the groom bag that allows for meticulous organization ringside and a portable phone charger, Lindsey was scrupulous about every inch of her line.
From the early mornings in the stable to the hours spent on the road, Lindsey believes that we are all united by a common grit, patience and passion for a life lived in the saddle. Schulz supports every equestrian’s endeavors so they can continue the pursuits that matter most.
We caught up with Lindsey to get to know the woman behind the brand.
…you might not know about … Lindsey Schulz and Schulz Collection
by Lindsay Brockphoto © Victoria Beardslee
1. I began drawing the first iteration of the Schulz bags after losing all my tack in the Woolsey Fire. I was looking to replace my previous bags but couldn’t find anything that fit my aesthetic while also being durable. I decided if I couldn’t find it, I would try to make it myself.
2. Since this business was rooted in the effects of our climate crisis, it was also important that we take every action along the way to be as responsible to our planet as we can and continue to improve as we grow. The most sustainable thing we can do is avoid landfills altogether by making a product that stands the test of time. Also, we give a portion of each Schulz Collection purchase to Project Regeneration, whose mission is to end the climate crisis in one generation—through a transformative approach that honors justice, biodiversity, and human dignity.
3. I have a background in art, and I still maintain a studio practice alongside Schulz. I received my MFA from CalArts in Studio Art and my BFA from Otis in Photography.
4. I co-host a comedic art podcast with my best friend Olive Moya called Middlebrow
5. I started Inu Packs in 2016 with my husband George, where we rehabilitate and socialize dogs, specifically those with aggression and behavioral issues.
6. I started riding horses at the age of six but didn’t begin competing until 24. We were a moto-x racing family and my parents wanted me to grow up without the pressure of competition and to just love my time around horses. Even though I was desperate to finally compete (as I am a very competitive person by nature), I am grateful to my parents for always prioritizing the passion and joy above all else.
7. All but one of the horses I’ve competed with have been lease opportunities from wonderful women at my barn. Aside from my own horse Fibonacci, whom we had to retire at a young age, Luna Blanca, Wishful Thinking, Laredo 183, Delia 87 and Uprising were all incredible leases that furthered my education in ways I am so grateful for. Specifically Laredo, owned by Whitney Harrington, brought me to the Grand Prix where together we were USDF & CDS AA Champions for Region 7 in 2015 – but I will never forget his “firebreathing dragon” personality and heart of gold work ethic.
8. I am slightly compulsive when it comes to organization, especially my studio. Some artists create in chaos, but I cannot start working on a project unless my space is clean. I search out beautiful and well-crafted objects for my studio practice (hand carved brushes, certain notebooks I use exclusively, specialty paper, etc).
9. I love collecting books but don’t get around to reading as much as I’d like. At this point I am just mastering Tsundoku.
After deciding to leave LA, George and I moved to Sebastopol, CA a few years ago, where we are currently living with our dogs, retired horses (including Fibonacci), guinea fowl, chickens and our newest addition: goats. (Most of our farm animals are named after characters from The Office, Parks and Rec, Schitts Creek and Harry Potter).
Aside from dressage of course, my favorite form of exercise is boxing.
Learn more about Lindsey and Schulz Collection at SchulzCollection.com and find @schulzcollection on Instagram. Shop Schulz Collection from SchulzCollection.com, ELLApa.com and EQUlifestyleboutique.com.
OUT & about
LONGINES GLOBAL CHAMPIONS TOUR – PARIS, FRANCEPhotos © Ashley Neuhof
7. It is always great to make the podium! 1st place goes to Henrik von Eckermann, 2nd place to Jerome Guery, and Maikel Van Der Vleuten takes home 3rd. Congratulations to all three! 8. Egypt’s Nayel Nassar and Igor van de Wittemore navigate the challenging course to the delight of a packed crowd 9. Tiffany Foster and Figor come out strong and ready to work! 10. Henrik von Eckermann puts on a good show with a fist bump as the big winner of the competition 11. A birds-eye-view offers an interesting look at the ring and crowd at the ECCO FEI 2022 World Championships, as Henrik von Eckermann walks out of the ring
Your Stories Have Power. WeRideTogether.today
is an awareness campaign and educational website designed to empower, inform, and unite the equestrian community around one goal: ending widespread sexual misconduct in sport. Are you a parent wondering how to keep your children safe at the barn? Are you an event organizer looking for ways to support athletes? Are you a survivor ready to tell your story? WeRideTogether.today is here for you.
BETWEEN the linesby Laurie Berglie
ImpelledSARAH WELK BAYNUM
314 pages | amazon.com
Kindle E-Book: $3.99
Ocala, Wellington, suspense, a love triangle, and horses – does it get any better? No, it does not, and you’ll find all that and more in Sarah Welk Baynum’s debut novel, Impelled – One Decision Can Change Everything
Main character, Emma Walker, is at a crossroads. Not long after a bad breakup with her boyfriend, she learns that her student loans will not be renewed. That means she no longer has the funds to complete her final year of college. But instead of looking back and stressing about things she cannot change, Emma charges forward, lands a dream job in her chosen industry, packs up herself and her horse, and heads south from Ohio to Ocala, Florida.
Lightly rolling hills, green pastures, miles of horse fencing, and Spanish moss dripping lazily from live oak trees set the backdrop for Emma’s internship at Twin Oaks Farm. Each day brings exciting challenges for Emma as she is kept busy with farm chores, riding the training and sales horses, and competing her personal horse,Valentine. She also befriends her colleagues, especially Michael, the resident handyman.
Emma is so busy with her work at Twin Oaks that she barely pays attention to some strange occurrences that take place. An odd note given to her at a party, a stranger buying her a drink at a restaurant – these things hardly register on Emma’s radar, and as she makes her way to Wellington with the team, she doesn’t give them a second thought.
Wellington keeps the team hopping as the show circuit heats up, and it’s here that Emma is reunited with Liam, a friend from back home. Emma is torn between her friendship with Michael and a growing relationship with Liam, but before she can figure out her romantic feelings, her life takes a dramatic turn.
Those strange occurrences from earlier have now turned into scary, threatening events, and it becomes clear that Emma has a stalker. But who could it be? She’s hardly met anyone new and has spent every waking moment riding and building her career. Before she knows it, however, Emma and Valentine are caught up in a dangerous, tangled web of trouble with both of their lives hanging in the balance!
After enjoying this page-turner, grab a copy of Book 2 in the “Impelled Series,” Impulsion, to see what Emma and the Twin Oaks team are up to next!
You can learn more about author Sarah Welk Baynum and her upcoming books at: sarahwelkbaynumauthor.com or on Instagram @sarah_welk
A Exceptional Guide to Show Jumping, Performance Hunters & the Equestrian Lifestyle
Horse & Style Magazine is a lifestyle publication with an innovative, behind-the-scenes focus on equestrian style and fashion; and unique, in-depth coverage of North American as well as global competitors, events and happenings.
Advertise with us.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Shine Bright Like a Diamond
H&S loves rewarding amusing trends in the show ring, and it certainly never lets a good Rhianna lyric go to waste, so this Trend Report is one of the best. And if the 2022 warm-up and show rings are any indication, it is one of your favorite trends too. This glossy look is giving show apparel a fresh look, and offers riders more than one way to shine in the ring.
6. Even the littlest rider had her game face on!
7. Colleen Holton and her own mount Udefix display the excellent form that left them undefeated after riding Bobby Murphy’s challenging course in the $10,000 WEC Hunter Derby 3’ Open 8. At the end of the ride, at the end of the show, it always boils down to a love of the horse 9. Junior rider Delia Lyle of Boulder, Colorado and her horse Lucky Life win champion in the $10,000 WEC Hunter Derby Non-Pro 10. Kady Abrahamson gives Vancouver a big pat after a job well done. The excellent ride secured their win in the $25,000 WEC Grand Prix, sponsored by Vitalize®
EQUESTRIAN tastemakerby Annie Heise-Alden
As fall approaches and the weather changes, I begin to envision life with chic layers, snug sensible staples, and a little splurge for comfort’s sake. I kept the palette clean for this fall’s collection – think black, white, gold, and charcoal – so these essentials are sure to pair nicely with everything you already own. Pick one, or pick them all, anything here is sure to make your fall a little more cozy and help with the transition from the hot summer to coolish weather, shorter days, and an impending holiday season.
No Cold Shoulders
Shawls are a fall season essential, but it is important to find a good one. Luckily, I did the legwork for you, and can definitely say that the deep gray cashmere and linen Dior Oblique Shawl is THE one.This shawl highlights the Dior house’s iconic motif with its print, as well as the Christian Dior signature jacquard band, giving it an elegant, timeless look. But to offer a bit of fun, the edge has a frilly fringe. Whether worn over the shoulders or around the neck, this is an effortless and gorgeous way to keep warm on chilly fall mornings. Dior Oblique Shawl, $1,050: dior.com
Elevated Barn Boots
Do boots get any better than this? They are waterproof, woollined, and rubber soled, but they also have the vintage, checkprinted Burberry print. The functionality works at the barn, but the style – 1" stacked heel, rounded toe, and gored sides –can also work with any everyday outfit. These boots are the most stylish way to transition your feet from summer into wettish weather. Burberry Allostock Leather Vintage Check Chelsea Booties, $890: us.burberry.com
Equestrian HeirloomDavid Yurman
This piece is a bit on the nose for us horse girls, but layered with other chunky and delicate yellow gold pieces, it is perfection. Keep horses close to your heart with this beautiful tag necklace from David Yurman inspired by horse images found on ancient coins and in stone carvings. This modern classic highlights the horse, a symbol of freedom and independence, and beautifully accents any fall outfit. David Yurman Petrvs® Horse Amulet in 18K Yellow Gold, $1,450: davidyurman.com
Tantalizing Tobacco Coqui Coqui
I was recently shopping in Malibu and entered a store that smelled like my vacation dreams, and soon realized it was the intoxicating scent of Coqui Coqui’s Tabaco Reed Diffuser. The fragrance gives the room a clean, elegant scent of strong, warm tobacco leaves. And this velvety, earthy scent comes with a story. The scent’s foundation, the ‘Sacred Tobacco’ plant, holds a long history in ancient Mexican medicinal and spiritual tradition, since as early as 1400 BC. With this exotic diffuser, Coqui Coqui has found a way to make your home feel like a five-star hotel. Coqui Coqui Tabaco Large Reed Diffuser, $235.00: coquicoquius.com
A Friendly Collab
Emma Tate Ceramics x Annie Alden Design
You may remember when I included Emma Tate Ceramics in Equestrian Tastemaker from a few issues back, and while I have always been a fan of Tate, I am now grateful to call her a friend. She and I teamed up to create a new collection of equine sculptures: Emma Tate Ceramics x Annie Alden Design. I have one in my home and it’s a showstopper. The lines are simple, elegant, modern, and the tones are neutral. The pedestals are handcrafted by a local Amsterdam metalsmith and the worn, liquid brass finish was designed by the two of us. The best part? They are 100% handmade. They fit into any aesthetic, and possess a timeless quality that works great in fall, but transitions easily to any other season. Emma Tate Ceramics x Annie Alden Design, 15cm/6inches, 18cm/7inches, 20cm/8inches, $2,700 / 4,800 / 6,900: emmatateceramics.com
Your First-Layer Hermès
This is fall, so let’s layer – but make it chic. These firstlayer items from Hermès are as comfortable as they are beautiful. The mosaic print will give your layered look a hint of fun underneath your coat and scarf, and the back and white color scheme means any color coat or scarf will do.The high crewneck on the sweater contrasts in a flirty way with the belly baring crop top cut, helping you strike that perfect wardrobe balance when the fall weather can’t decide whether it wants to be warm or cool. Whatever the weather, I love this fun set from Hermès. Hermès “Mosaique” Leggings, $1,125 and Hermès “Mosaique” sleeveless cropped sweater, $810: hermes.com
For Your Cuff Collection
Scully & Scully
Who doesn’t love a good, fun bangle? This abstract animal print bangle was designed by my dear friend and artist, Tug Rice. Rice teamed up with Halcyon Days of England to create this beautiful hand painted 18k gold plated cuff bangle. Find this heirloom quality piece, among many other timeless items for your home, at the esteemed Scully & Scully. Scully & Scully Halcyon Days Tug Rice Cuff Bangle, $625: scullyandscully.com
Feel Good, Look Good Equestrian Wellness
Weather changes are always hard on our skin and immune system, but Equestrian Wellness has you covered. Two in particular, The Wellness Box™ and the Face Nutrition Bundle, are out just in time for fall cold and flu season. The Wellness Box™ is an amazing collection of five allnatural, handcrafted products to help boost the immune system. Using herbs from all natural and wildcrafted ingredients, and free from toxic chemicals, these products are the way to keep feeling good, or to start feeling better fast. The Face Nutrition Bundle is an incredible skincare product line that is overflowing with nutrient rich ingredients, which include essential fatty acids and antioxidants. All of the products work together to nourish, heal, repair, maintain elasticity, and protect our skin. Equestrian Wellness Face Nutrition Bundle, $125 and Equestrian Wellness - The Wellness Box, $120: equestrianwellness.com
Update the Library
L’ Academie Equestre de Versailles
I bought this book this year at Saut Hermès, and it has been a wonderful addition to my growing collection of coffee table books. In this exceptional collection, equestrian art meets Koto Bolofo’s photography. To study his equine subjects, Bolofo moved into the Versailles Equestrian Academy where Bartabas introduced him to the exceptional riders of the royal stables. The black-and-white prints, and the focus on surface and texture, on architecturals and settings, and on costumes, create timeless images that make for hours of page turning. L’ Academie Equestre de Versailles makes for the perfect gift or little personal present. L’ Academie Equestre de Versailles, Koto Bolofo, $55: blackwells.co.uk
Let’s face it, we have to run errands to and from the barn, so why not collect some pieces that help you do this with style and grace?
Cavalleria Toscana’s Women’s Jacket with Hood and Drawstring reimagines the classic leather jacket by giving it an equestrian twist, combining a more modern look with functional features. While the look is new, it also embraces the old by incorporating the branded Lycra® edges and the logo on the shoulder which are the hallmarks of Cavalleria Toscana style. This is the jacket to keep in your car; it takes you from the barn to downtown and back again with zero effort. Cavalleria Toscana Women’s Jacket with Hood and Drawstring, $880: cavalleriatoscana.com
DRESS FOR THE OF YOUR LIFEride
equestrian lifestyle apparel at
1% of sales donated to equine causes
STYLE riderby Helen Abrams
Professional rider, trainer and equestrian fashion enthusiast.
Anative of Seattle, Carly Anthony jumped into the ring at age ten with the help of her mom Cara Anthony and trainer Karen Healey. Following victories in equitation which include a Gold Medal in the USET Finals, Anthony was a top recruit at the University of Georgia.
While studying Business Management, Anthony won a national title as well as numerous All-American honors. Following graduation Anthony turned professional and rode for Olympians Eric Lamaze and Ben Maher. Anthony now calls Wellington, Florida her home, where she continues her lifelong passion as a 5* rider, in addition to training the next generation of burgeoning equestrians.
Anthony’s aesthetic could be summed up in two words: effortless chic. Whether she is breaking in a new horse, taking a lunch break at the showgrounds, or working with her newest client, Anthony combines classic equestrian wear from Kaval with relaxed fit tees, Hermes bracelets, and always a fabulous pair of sunnies.
When looking to accessorize, Anthony has a keen sense for great craftsmanship as well as a smart eye for value. Though she loves finding new brands, Kaval’s
collections always remain her go-to for breeches, show shirts, and hunt coats. Kaval’s timeless style and innovative trends keep Anthony feeling current yet comfortable in brands which are all synonymous with her equestrian chic lifestyle.
Horse & Style: Describe your riding (apparel) style.
Carly Anthony: I love a clean classic look. Most of my riding clothes come from Kaval. They have the styles that I am looking for and their products are also durable which is great for how much I wear them!
H&S: What is your head-to-toe riding outfit?
CA: I have a very standard competition outfit. Starting from the top, I wear a Miss Samshield helmet, an Equiline (Kaval) show shirt, Horse Pilot (Kaval) breeches, Tucci boots, and I finish the look with Roeckl gloves.
H&S: Do you wear anything for good luck?
CA: I don’t have a specific item that I have for good luck. What I have learned
is that we create our own luck through strategic planning, training, and hard work. That’s better than any good luck charm!
H&S: What are your favorite equestrian brands?
CA: I love all of the brands that I wear. They keep the clean and classic style that I like and are incredibly comfortable and long lasting.
H&S: Where do you like to buy your riding attire?
CA: Kaval is my one-stop-shop for all of my riding attire!
H&S: How would you describe your non-horse show style?
CA: All of my outfits have to be comfortable with a little bit of edge. I love pairing a simple outfit with a crazy pair of shoes or some outrageous sunglasses. It just needs one small piece to make the outfit. The most important thing is to feel comfortable in what you’re wearing.
H&S: How do you handle high-pressure situations, for example right before you enter a big class?
CA: I am a strong believer in visualization. I like to go to a quiet place after I walk the
course, close my eyes, and visualize myself jumping the course. By the time I go in the ring I feel like I have jumped the course multiple times and I know what to expect.
On days where it seems harder to focus, I listen to an audio clip from Tonya Johnston. She is a Mental Skills Coach with a master’s degree in sport psychology who specializes in work with equestrian athletes, and has been a tremendous help in getting me in the right headspace for the ring.
H&S: What are your riding goals?
CA: I have a lot of riding goals! I would like to continue to represent the US on as
Anthony’s aesthetic could be summed up in two words: effortless chic.photo © Kind Media photo © Kind Media photo © Juan Luis
many teams as possible. It is a tremendous honor and privilege to do so, and I love the ability to compete as a team. I would also like to keep producing horses to the 5* level. I have had the honor of riding and producing horses for top Olympians and now for myself as well. The journey of helping horses reach their full potential is one of the most rewarding feelings.
H&S: What are your career goals?
CA: While achieving all that I can in my riding career as well as building my training and sales business in Wellington, I want to continue to support young athletes that may not have the tools or ability to expand
their network and skills in this sport. As a committee member of the Emerging Athletes Program, I want to support the program and cultivate young athletes over the years to come, as well as help create a strong source of young professionals in any field. Our sport always needs great horsemen and women and the EAP is a fabulous program for nurturing those future equestrians.
H&S: Who has been most influential in your riding career?
CA: There have been many people in my career thus far that have helped me to get where I am today. It takes a
village and endless amounts of support to make it in this sport and business. What I have learned so far is that you should always stay true to who you are and be appreciative and open to any piece of advice or opportunity that comes your way. I rely on input and support from many professionals and horsemen/women and I am incredibly grateful for the network of people around me.
H&S: What’s the one thing you never go in the ring without?
CA: My horse! At the end of the day, it’s just the horse and me out in that ring giving it everything we’ve got!
All of my outfits have to be comfortable with a little bit of edge. I love pairing a simple outfit with a crazy pair of shoes or some outrageous sunglasses.photo © Kristin Lee by Amanda Mactas
Just because summer’s over doesn’t mean we have to flock indoors. Fall is an excellent time of year to get your last rays of sunshine before winter takes over, and there’s no better way to enjoy the great outdoors than with the perfect picnic. With delicious seasonal fruits and vegetables, fall foliage, and a slight chill in the air, there’s no better time of year to eat outside than during harvest season. Whether you’re setting up for a beach picnic, post-hike picnic, or even a simple backyard picnic, simplicity is key.
Pick the right carrier.
Sure, a bottle of wine isn’t a bad thing to take along, but make sure to bring along some water, too. If it’s a hot day, it’s important to stay hydrated and we recommend nixing the plastic and filling up with a Hydros pitcher. Make it even more special by infusing your water with your favorite herbs and fruits.
Hydros 40 oz. Glass Slim Pitcher, $35 and Aqua Infuser, $10, HydrosLife.com
Include some munchies.
If you’re schlepping all of your picnic essentials to a picturesque backdrop, you want to ensure that carrying it all is a breeze. Quintessential picnic baskets have come a long way, and we recommend a sturdy carrier with compartments to separate out all of your cutlery and goodies.
Providence Woven Picnic Basket, $89-$129, PotteryBarn.com
A full meal is great, but if you’re planning on prolonging your picnic to make the most of your time, it’s smart to pack some nibbles to snack on throughout the day. Health and nutrition coach Liana Wernger Gray believes the key to any picnic is serving up food that is cute, delicious, and healthy. Here are some of her favorite nutrient-dense snacks that are perfect for carrying to a picnic:
Chocolate Sunbutter, $7.49, SunbutterDirect.com Lesser Evil Popcorn, $12/case of 3, LesserEvil.com Nick’s Stick, $3.25, Nicks-Sticks.com Peeled Snacks, $49.99/12, PeeledSnacks.com Simple Mills Crackers, $5.39, SimpleMills.com Blue Stripes Whole Cacao Trail Mix, $7.99, BlueStripes.com
The perfect picnic requires the perfect set-up. And that includes a resting spot. You’ll not only want a blanket big enough for your crew, but one that is waterproof is essential, just in case the ground is a bit dewy. And the cuter, the better. Mark & Graham’s gingham picnic blanket checks off all the boxes, plus it comes with a convenient leather carry handle, and can even be monogrammed to add a little something extra.
Waterproof Picnic Blanket, $129, MarkandGraham.com
Bring some games.
Okay, but not completely. You’re already set with your pitcher of water, so it’s more than okay to pack some vino to really get relaxed. Something affordable, yet drinkable is always a good choice, and Bread & Butter Wines has something for every palate, and every picnic pairing.
Bread & Butter Wines, $14.99, BreadandButterWines.com
Liven up your day with something fun! Look for something easy to carry that won’t take up too much space. Card games are always a hit, so pack a deck, or try out one of these fun options, too.
Cards Against Humanity, $29, Amazon.com We’re Not Really Strangers, $25, Amazon.com Code Names, $15.99, Target.com There’s Been a Murder, $16.99, Amazon.com Icebreaker, $25, BestSelf.co
Keep your food for yourself! Pack some bug repellent to ensure no pesky critters steal your grub.
Golden Hour Mosquito Repellent, $22, Kinfield.com
Fly Repellent Fan Food Picnic Protector Pest Away Table Fan, $21.80, Walmart.com
the brandby Laurie Berglie photos courtesy of RIATA Designs
RIATA Designs was founded in 2014 by Jill Slater and has since taken the equestrian world by storm.
IT’S no secret that those in the horse world have long coveted and valued products that are both functional and fashionable, and RIATA sun hats are that perfect combination. These large, customizable RIATAS provide stylish sun protection whether you’re ringside at a horse show or working outside at home on the farm.
AN INSTANT HIT
Jill jokes that she, “literally fell into this business.” In 2014, she was asked by her trainer, Liz Hutchinson of Avalon Hunter Jumpers, to decorate a few sun hats for clients who were heading to Thermal. Jill, a professional floral designer, was a natural fit to accommodate this special request. Little did she know that these would be the very first RIATAS to make their way into the horse world, and they were an instant hit. Just like that, a business was born.
No stranger to creativity, this new business bloomed under Jill’s direction.
“Being creative comes naturally to me as I owned and operated a flower shop in the busy Stanford Shopping Center, Palo Alto, for more than 20 years. I was also the “Good Gardener” on ABC 7
News, San Francisco. Much of my time was spent traveling the USA showing TV viewers and radio listeners how easy it is to decorate with flowers.”
After their initial debut at Thermal, everyone wanted a RIATA. Soon other riders, trainers, and boutique owners were asking for their own to wear, showcase, and sell. The flood of requests led to the creation of the business, and Jill has been busy designing these stylish pieces ever since.
WHAT’S IN A NAME?
The name itself, RIATA, has an interesting story. “My wonderful husband, Steve, thought of it! I kind of wanted the name Lariat, but it sounded too much like one of my favorite brands, Ariat. Steve, or Slink as I call him, informed me that another word for ‘lariat’ is ‘riata.’
We immediately loved it. I also knew that whatever the name, the hats would be called as such. Just like we call Kleenex, Kleenex, and not a tissue – we call them RIATAS, and not sun hats. And, interestingly, RIATA has the exact same letters as Ariat, just in a different order. Isn’t that weird?” Jill took that as a sign that the name was meant to be.
“Creating unique personalized styles that provide sun protection is always my goal.”
Their most popular styles can be purchased online at riatadesigns.com and will be in your hands within seven to ten business days. However, if you’d rather have a oneof-a-kind RIATA, you can customize yours to fit your unique style and personality.
“Let’s face it, most of my clients are women. And as a woman, I have an inside track to our way of thinking. When I design a custom RIATA, I ask my gals to create with me. Many have lots of great ideas and the synergistic, collaborative process is a win-win opportunity. I have made many friends along the way through this process. I’m always surprised and tickled when someone tells me they have a RIATA addiction and need to add to their collection.”
Appreciative of her past successful career in all things surrounding floral design, Jill
now finds that her passion has evolved into RIATA and the values behind her brand. “Creating unique personalized styles that provide sun protection is always my goal. Every RIATA that leaves my studio is intended to be special for its recipient."
A PASSION FOR HORSES
A California native, Jill grew up in a small farming community in the San Joaquin Valley where her family owned and operated a department store. Her family roots and personal love for retail inspired Jill to tap into her design skills and her passion for horses urged her to develop something that the equestrian community would need and appreciate.
When Jill hit a milestone birthday, she decided to take a leap of faith. “I had a crazy idea when I turned 50 years old;
I decided to take up competitive show jumping! I didn’t really know what that meant, and it was a bit frightening, but I have never looked back. There has definitely been ups and downs in this sport, but my passion for horses and my competitive nature have brought me much joy. I treasure my accomplishments and the amazing experiences along the way.” Jill looks forward to growing a partnership with her new Hanoverian gelding, Calvin. And you can always find her ringside at their shows wearing her RIATA.
RIATA’S MOTTO: BE YOU
Jill has taken the competitive nature and drive that has served her well in the discipline of show jumping and put that passion into RIATA. Sun protection is something she takes very seriously as she
“I truly believe we are all enough and we have what it takes.”
also works for a facial plastic surgeon. “When not creating RIATAS, I work as surgical tech. I won’t get on my soapbox, but good sunscreen is a must and overall sun protection is important. RIATAS are not only stylish, but they are large enough to provide the maximum sun protection your skin will thank you for.”
When asked about business challenges she’s faced along the way, Jill looks on the bright side of those copycats trying to replicate her products. “I’m honored others want to copy RIATA, and I’m proud I ignited a trend in the horse world. I come from a family of retail, and we don’t give up or give in easily.”
With challenges also come accomplishments, and Jill’s biggest one to date has been connecting with her clients. “Biggest achievement? That’s such an easy answer! It’s meeting all of you – the fabulous women who create the horse world, from vendors to clients and women entrepreneurs like myself. That is a true gift, a blessing. You all inspire me to be me, which is actually RIATA’S motto: BE YOU. I truly believe we are all enough and we have what it takes.”
THE NEXT BEST THING
Jill is excited for RIATA’S future and freely admits that owning and running this company is the best job she’s ever had. The saying, ‘if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life,’ is certainly true for her. And she invites all her clients to keep in touch as she has some fun new initiatives on the horizon. “I’m always looking for the next best thing! The next best RIATA is constantly on my mind or on my head as I test each one prior to release for comfort, fit, sun protection, and style – so stay tuned!”
RIATA is located and created in Atherton and Petaluma, California. To learn more about Jill’s beautiful, customizable products, please visit www.riatadesigns.com or find her on Instagram @riatadesigns.
“You all inspire me to be me, which is actually RIATA’s motto: BE YOU.”
DA NIELL E D EMERS
& SURFACE PATTERN DESIGNER
A Romantic Grooms’ Wedding
When Horse & Style came across these images designed by the talented crew of Nelina Loiselle, Victoria Heer, and Megan Lentz, we jumped at the chance to run them. How could we possibly deny our readers the chance to see this incredible storybook of photos? And it was such a pleasure to interview Loiselle to learn more about the inspiration, the location, and of course, the good looking grooms and horses. Their images certainly tell a story of a fairytale wedding, but the real story is the bright future ahead of these three masterful women.
Horse & Style: What was the inspiration for this shoot?
Nelina Loiselle: Initially we set out to shoot one image for Victoria Heer Photography’s advertisement in The Scout Guide Hunt Country. As Victoria (Or Tori, who would do the photography) and I began brainstorming during our creative meeting, it became clear that we needed to create a visual editorial story. We dreamed up a romantic wedding day that captured the vibes of Virginia’s horse country. Often photographers are limited by the practical and logistical constraints of real-life weddings, so this shoot gave
Tori an opportunity to orchestrate the ultimate wedding day images without those typical constraints.
While we only needed one shot for her advertisement, we wanted to utilize the shoot to create more images and fully tell the story we’d dreamed up. We are excited to be able to share it here in Horse & Style Magazine, one of our favorite equestrian publications.
H&S: Please tell us about the special location.
NL: The initial idea was a fox hunting wedding scene, but as the idea evolved during our creative meetings, we kept being drawn to the elegance of the regency era and the more formal styling it allowed. We had all been binging Netflix’s Bridgerton at that time, so it naturally evolved in that direction. I suggested to Victoria that we do a grooms’ shoot, just to mix it up, and
she was really into it. We decided to center the story around two grooms on their wedding day, since you don’t see a lot of LGBTQ+ wedding editorials, especially equestrian ones.
Once we settled on the Bridgerton direction, I knew Great Marsh estate was the ideal location as it looks just like an English country estate, yet is right here in Hunt Country. The location choice
also led us to Megan! Megan Lentz, of Vida Events, has worked often with Tori on weddings and when Tori reached out to Megan to see if she could help us get in touch with Great Marsh, Megan not only secured the location for us, she also jumped at the chance to get involved more with the shoot. Megan ended up coming on as the third collaborator and took on most of the planning and vendor coordination for the shoot.
Our incredible collaborators really rounded out our team and allowed our shoot to come to life. We drew on friends, clients and colleagues from each of our networks. Jenn Pineau of Nature Composed provided the stunning florals, Cecillia Lin of Postskript Studio created the calligraphy letters, and Silas Redd of Nostalgia Boutique styled and sourced our wardrobe for the shoot. Everyone’s creative talent is what made this shoot possible and successful. We had so much fun collaborating with everyone.
H&S: Could you tell H&S more about the impressive models?
NL: As soon as we locked down our creative direction and had a mood board going, Tori and I were chatting about models and who to cast. Timothy Williams, Tori’s personal trainer at the time, immediately came to mind as he had modeling experience and that heartthrob look we were going for. Finding the second groom took a little more thought, and we finally roped Tori’s brother Kramer Szczesniak into it (Kramer is a videographer who also made our video during the shoot, so he pulled double duty!).
Timothy, I believe, had sat on a horse exactly once before, but he really was a natural! Luckily, the horses provided by Betsy Burke Parker of Hunter’s Rest were consummate professionals, and (along with their handler extraordinaire Betsy) took great care of models and crew alike.
H&S: Why do you think horses, the country, and the 1800s work so magically together?
NL: It’s a pairing that is just meant to be! And of course it makes sense historically too. We knew once we locked in the location, models, and wardrobe looks, that we couldn’t just imply the equestrian vibes with props. We needed to have real horses in the shoot. Procuring and shooting with equine talent is a challenge and always adds another layer of complexity to any
By centering our shoot on the grooms and featuring men’s vintage fashion mixed with horses and English country vibes we created a fresh take on Hunt Country style.
Our goal was to create the ultimate “Hunt Country Wedding Day”, but with some twists.
shoot. You have to find the right horses that don’t mind standing around and are pretty bomb proof to deal with cameras, lighting, props, models and a crew. As a production team you also have to be flexible as the horses don’t always stick to a shoot schedule. For example, at this shoot Megan had the schedule planned carefully to a T, but when the horses arrived early on location and were starting to snack (read: making big grass stains on their perfectly groomed faces!), we had to adapt quickly and shoot their scenes early. It was well worth it though as they totally made the shoot perfect.
H&S: What was your goal for the shoot?
NL: Our goal was to create the ultimate “Hunt Country Wedding Day”, but with some twists. Most styled or editorial wedding shoots focus on the bride and the dress. By centering our shoot on the grooms and featuring men’s vintage fashion mixed with horses and English country vibes we created a fresh take on Hunt Country style.
H&S: What are your teams’ aspirations?
NL: As a creative director I’m always looking for fun editorial projects like this one that allow the creative freedom to dig in, take some risks, and do things that are not typical. I feel most inspired when my
team and I are able to try things that are unexpected, to break “the rules” and to play. Working with a team of collaborators like Tori and Megan, we were able to push and challenge each other to dig deeper, and to think about things differently, and that made it all the more fulfilling.
H&S: Anything else you want readers to know?
NL: Our home base in Virginia's Hunt Country is laden with incredible history, stunning estates, endless horse talent, and idyllic landscapes – the ideal combo for photo shoots. Stay tuned, we are just getting started!
THE CREATIVE TEAM behind the photo shoot
Victoria wants her imagery to be bespoke to each and every wedding day. Her experience is tailored to couples looking for a meaningful and personalized approach. Inspired by Baroque paintings, cinema, and performing arts,Victoria utilizes a unique blend of hands-on artistic direction behind the camera, dreamy lighting, and a deep knowledge of artistic principles to produce extraordinary images that glow with warm, rich color and intense, romantic emotion.Victoria uses a mix of Medium Format 120mm film and digital photography to produce the finest quality imagery, with a fashion-forward edge and a touch of nostalgia.
Nelina is a Canadian-American editor, art director, and creative based in Virginia’s horse country, where she is currently restoring an 1890s Victorian farm and riding dressage on her Connemara. She is the editor of The Scout Guide Hunt Country. Nelina works as a freelance creative director and producer for editorial photo shoots and advertising for interiors, fashion, and brands. Her work has been featured in national lifestyle publications and by social media influencers.
A creative draw to thoughtful designs brought Megan into the wedding industry. While aesthetic design is a serious passion, Megan and her team strive to connect with couples to help them create wedding experiences as unique as their relationships. Megan draws from her love of traveling and the equestrian world to bring her couples’ visions to life. From Paris to Lake Como, and hunt seat to eventing – you’ll see a touch of everything when planning with her.
Mamma Denim Jeans, Zadig & Voltaire, $268
Diamanté Silk Shirt, Zadig & Voltaire, $498
Large Mini Tote Bag, Chloé, $2,590
Bubbles Belt Buckle & Reversible Strap, Hermès, $935
Carlotta Mule, Hermès, $1,275
Paris fashion can mean couture, but it can also mean ready-to-wear, like the fits created by the relatively new brand Zadig & Voltaire. This trendy company was founded by Parisian Thierry Gillier, who comes by his talent honestly – his grandfather was Andre Gillier, one of the founders of Lacoste. Everything in this line is perfection – the lines, the prints, the movement – so next time you are in Paris, skip the runway and hit the streets, in the best that off-the-rack has to offer.
Kate Wallet Wrinkle Bag, Zadig & Voltaire, $498
Stella Ankle Boots, Donald Pliner, $298
Radila Polka Flowers Dress, Zadig & Voltaire, $598
Chain D'Aancre Bracelet, Hermès, $1,450
Liam Coat, Zadig & Voltaire, $698
Esplar Sneaker, Veja, $140
Silver City Silver Necklace, Balenciaga, $98
Pink Small Kilia Backpack, Moncler, $580
Zoe Horse T-Shirt, Zadig & Voltaire, $128
Eyes Show Jeans, Zadig & Voltaire, $368
Lana Quartz-Beaded Straw Wide Brim Hat, Maison Michel, $735
Rive Gauche Raffia Tote Bag, Saint Laurent, $2,650
Square Sunglasses, Chanel, $302
Ranage Horses Silk Dress, Zadig & Voltaire, $798
Tyler Vintage Stars Ankle Boots, Zadig & Voltaire, $498
Steeve Jeans, Zadig & Voltaire, $278
Sanchi Amour Wings Sweatshirt, Zadig & Voltaire, $248
D-Frame Acetate Sunglasses, Celine Homme, $400
Cheval Key Ring, Hermès, $245
Louis Leather HighTop Sneaker, Christian Louboutin, $895
The culture of the horse, the culture of Paris, and, of course, the culture of Hermès.
GRAND PALAIS ÉPHÉMÈRE
This past March, the 12th edition of the Saut Hermès took place in a new venue, the Grand Palais Éphémère. This temporary exhibition hall in the Champ de Mars was designed by architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte to host exhibitions while the usual home of the Saut Hermès, the Grand Palais, is being renovated for the 2024 Summer Olympics. This lovely venue overlooks the Eiffel Tower, and it was from there that spectators enjoyed Saut Hermès’ yearly celebration centered around the roots of Hermès: sport, emotion, and equestrian celebration.
A private tour of the competitors’ stalls revealed a world of calm and happy horses standing deep in bedding, with their heads hanging over orange Hermès stall gates, and grooms peacefully but diligently moving about. This backstage world was a quiet sanctuary, a rarity in showground stabling, and a welcome respite for the horses, grooms, and riders weary from loud show days and a busy show schedule. At the Saut Hermès, it is apparent Hermès considers the horses as much their guests as they do the people.Photo © Jessica Rodrigues
EMILE HERMÈS MUSEUM
The Emile Hermès Museum is Hermès’ private collection of equestrian antiques and original Hermès products that span several rooms of the third floor of the Hermès flagship store on Rue Faubourg SaintHonoré, and as it’s invitation only, it is an incredible honor to visit this inspiring space. The curator of the space explains, “The collection is the spirit of Hermès and the soul of the company.” The moment the door swings open, the smell of old leather surrounds, and it is apparent one is in the midst of tangible history – the space is pure magic.
CONTEMPORARY TACK ROOM
The Grand Palais Ephémère was not only transformed for showjumping, but to showcase the incredible level of detail and craftsmanship behind the Hermès brand. Down one of the many orange hallways was a sellier space, set up for visitors to take a peek at the process of designing the Selle Rouge, Hermès’s newest show jumping saddle. This special space was so modern, so clean, so Hermès, it was a tack room dream come true.
THE SELLE ROUGE SADDLE
Since 1837, every Hermès saddle has been hand-made by a single craftsman, then specially configured for its rider and horse under the guidance of its saddle expert. The concept behind all Hermès tack is to feel the closeness and oneness with the horse. This process has to start with only the best of materials, and delicate intricate detailing and thought, throughout the process.
The Selle Rouge is the result of numerous discussions between rider, saddle expert, and artisan. The tree of the Selle Rouge is made of beech wood, making it lightweight and flexible. The leather shines a bright red, making it a saddle of transparent elegance as well. It is perfectly executed, perfectly Hermès.
FIRST AND FOREMOST, A HORSESHOW
The 5* classes were sensational to watch, as difficult courses, navigated by exceptional horses and riders, made for quite a competition spectacle during the week. A few riders in particular had an excellent show: Marcus Ehning, Henrik von Eckermann, Edwina Tops-Alexander, Martin Fuchs, Peder Fredrickson, and Daniel Deusser, just to name a few. The winner of the Les Talents Hermès was Anna Carway. The Saut Hermès attracts the best riders, and it brings out the best of those riders.
GESTURE OF THE SOUL
The Alma Vaquera troupe, directed by Denis Marquès, performed Gesture of the Soul in the arena of the Grand Palais Éphémère. The show featured eight horsemen and women of the Alma Vaquera equestrian ballet, and offered a performance that drew its inspiration from doma vaquera, an equestrian discipline that originated in Spain nearly three centuries ago. The Alma Vaquera troupe created an equestrian art form in which horses and riders become one, and it surprised and delighted the crowd.
A WIN FOR KEVIN STAUT
For Sunday’s Grand Prix finale, the jumps are set at an astonishing 1.60 meters, making the intimate indoor track incredibly technical and challenging. In the end, it was a good day for the French: Kevin Staut and his Mount Cheppetta took the title. The crowd erupted with a standing ovation as a sign of adoration for the pair, and Staut put on a big smile and Mount Cheppetta put on a good show during the victory gallop.
GOODBYE FOR NOW
The Saut Hermès is not just a horse show, it is an immersive experience where each visitor is treated as a special guest of Hermès. It is a chance to celebrate the culture of Hermès, which is a culture of equestrians, craftsmanship, and history. The celebration of horse and rider leaves one feeling incredibly inspired. It is a show not to be missed, and 2023’s Saut Hermès is already on our list.
SAUT HERMÈS – PARIS, FRANCEPhotos © Christophe Tanière, Jessica Rodrigues
The Best Trends in 2022 Barns
IF someone asked you to sit down right now and draw your dream horse farm, what would the endresult look like?
Are you envisioning a ten-stall barn with high ceilings, impeccably crafted doorways, rubber mat aisleways, an indoor and outdoor wash stall and a tack room that goes on for days? Or perhaps you’re imagining a more European theme with a courtyard filled with bright eyes and
beautiful arched necks happily reaching outside their extravagant windows? Maybe you’re envisioning an old horse barn hidden away on a breathtaking farm in Vermont with two stories and wildflowers that extend as far as the eye can see.
No matter what your vision, such dreams can be fulfilled. Here are some common and luring trends that come to mind when piecing together your equestrian masterplan design.
TREND 1: RIDING AND ENTERTAINMENT:
Let’s say you spent most of your life as an equestrian.You jumped, you galloped, you went out for trail rides, you rode bareback in wide open fields, swam your horse, or perhaps you focused on dressage and suddenly you have agreed to host your daughter’s wedding decades later. Maybe you have horses, or maybe you just have the living memory of them with a spectacular but unoccupied horse barn.
Imagine walking up a short but perfectly flat paved driveway where an emeraldgreen barn awaits your arrival with a spectacular array of flowers acting as bookends on either side of the overarching but incredibly alluring doorway. As you walk in, your jaw drops as you follow the beautiful timber frame and beams high above where you imagined the ceiling to end. The outside light passes in waves through the glass windows as the day turns into evening. This is precisely where your daughter and son-in-law will be married. This is the exact vision your child longs for and can be brought to life in no time.
TREND 2: HORSE COMFORT
How many equestrians spend not only tons of hard-earned money on their precious horses, but literally pour their blood, sweat and tears into their horses’ comfort, health and wellbeing? I would argue that an overwhelming majority of horse owners, whether you’re competing at high levels in various equestrian sports, or you simply enjoy having horses on your property, care deeply about their horses’ overall comfort.
Close your eyes for one minute. Now imagine walking into your dream barn, or shed row, what do you see? Perhaps you’re seeing a steel grey/blue barn with enormous sliding doors, with large windows for your horses to poke their heads out of? Or maybe a classic off-white colored barn with brown window shutters safely clasped open so your dappled grey pony can stick his head outside. Maybe you’re seeing a forest green barn with
white accents surrounding your horses’ stalls, ceiling fans and a beautiful open concept that allows a breeze to blow through during a warm summer evening. Whatever you see when you close your eyes can be recreated!
TREND 3: RECLAIMED WOOD
Have you ever driven through a small town in New England and noticed a beautiful, but slightly abandoned barn tucked away on a hillside? Or perhaps you recently purchased a small farm with what appears to be a solid horse barn structure, but it needs some major renovations?
B & D Builders would be perfect for this sort of project as well. Without losing any of the barn’s authenticity, this company could reconstruct the old barn, make some major renovations, but keep the original feel. Imagine walking into a semi-low ceiling old barn with exquisite timber frame details, stone walls on the back side of each stall and cozy, fluffy bedded stalls with freshly painted black doors awaiting each horse’s entrance?
This barn is practical but darling as well. The stonework keeps the barn cool during the warmer months and the low ceilings and more compact design will keep the heat inside during the colder winter months, which makes for an ideal yearround equine structure. B & D Builders can renovate this rustic but quaint barn without a doubt. They strive for perfection, while preserving memories and history.
Whether you’re a bright-eyed and wishful child daydreaming about a barn filled with different colored ponies, a hard-working adult who rides horses on the side just for fun, or a professional equestrian, there’s always going to be a dream barn that keeps your horses safe, happy, and comfortable. This barn has endless possibilities and enormous potential. This barn is where dreams are made when the lights go out. This barn is where fairy tales turn into reality.
B & D BUILDERS
Whether you’re looking for a luxury home, horse barn, or event venue, B&D Builders will go above and beyond when it comes to craftsmanship, dedication and keeping the customer not only happy, but ecstatic. B&D Builders has a strong focus on timber framing, and they offer extremely high-end luxury spaces. All the images seen here are from B&D Builders projects.
Learn more at banddbuilders.com.
homeby Laurie Berglie photos by Allison Elefante
A Modern Interpretation of Classic English Equestrian
English, east coast vibe she was exuding. But timeless, classic equestrian style knows no boundaries, and Lindsay has made it her life’s work to bring a modern interpretation of this style into each and every home she designs – even her own.
Horse & Style: Tell us a little about the history of your home.Where is it located and when did you move in?
Lindsay Hunter: We moved into our red brick Georgian style home outside of Nashville, Tennessee, in 2014. As a California native, I was accustomed to stucco or plaster homes, so when we moved to Tennessee, the idea of having a traditional brick home was very exciting. It is the first home my husband and I have ever owned, and after moving out of a small rental, we couldn’t envision filling all the extra rooms. But soon after we moved in, we started a family and now have filled every square inch!Lindsay Hunter; photo © Georgina Preston
Imet Lindsay Hunter last year at an Industry Insider’s Luncheon in Middleburg,Virginia. She was impeccably dressed in dark corduroy slacks, a tan sweater, and a beautiful tweed jacket paired with a chic silk scarf. She looked like a local who had ridden her horse over to the Mortgage Hall Estate for the event, not someone who had journeyed from Tennessee. After chatting with her, I learned she was originally from California, which I found interesting given the traditional
H&S: Tell us about Modern Equestrian Shop. Why did you start this business?
LH: There’s a moment at the end of an interior design project where the final touches are added. The perfect throw blanket is draped across the sofa, the artwork is hung, the candlesticks are placed on the fireplace mantle – and all of a sudden, the stress of the renovation begins to fade away and the client starts to feel at home. Although I would love to bottle that feeling and turn it into a room spray, sadly, I cannot. But through my shop, I can offer a collection of beautiful décor pieces that give someone the opportunity to
add finishing touches to their own space. The idea of Modern Equestrian Shop lived on a vision board for more than ten years, and finally in June of 2021 I officially launched my e-commerce business. The shop is a thoughtfully selected collection of treasures curated with the equestrian-enthusiast in mind. I love every single piece, and I would be lying if I said I didn’t keep one of everything in my own home as a test sample.
H&S: How would you describe your style? What was the design vision for your home?
LH: I describe my style as ‘modern equestrian’ as it is a contemporary interpretation of a traditional British estate, mixed with my laid-back California vibe and my casual equestrian lifestyle.
H&S: Do you have any anchor pieces/artwork that you worked your vision/décor around?
LH: Several years ago, I lost Alice, my horse/ best friend/partner-in-crime of 20 years. She was a polo pony from Argentina that I turned into my foxhunting horse during the winters. When she passed, I was left with many years’ worth of polo and hunting gear: saddles, halters, bridles, pads, mallets, polo wraps, boots, helmets, etc. Most of it went into garage storage and some it came into my house without a place for it to go. I wanted to create a space where I could honor her memory using the treasured tack she left behind. I don’t see old stirrup irons as something that should be stored in the garage, but rather showcased as they represented the countless miles Alice and I traveled together
with my boots firmly resting on those rubber pads. Now they sit on my dresser and serve as a daily reminder of those journeys we embarked on so many years ago.
I had a large portrait of Alice printed on canvas after she passed, but it never felt right hanging alone on a blank wall. When I redecorated my office, I removed shelves in the middle section of my built-ins to create a designated space where I could highlight her portrait. Her leather halter and polo bridle hang on either side of her portrait, framing her face. It finally feels as though she has a worthy place in my home, a space carved out just for her where she can be the focal point of the room and resume her status as the Queen in my life.
H&S: What is your favorite piece of equestrian décor?
LH: I believe that no equestrian home is complete without some well-loved tack. And luckily this is very easy to accomplish. Simply rest a faded helmet on top of a stack of books, put a pair of boots in a corner of a room, or hang an old bridle on a wingback chair or on a hook on the wall. Adding tack to a space gives character and helps tell the story of the equestrian who lives in that space and the horses who have enriched their lives.
H&S: What colors/patterns/textures do you gravitate toward when decorating? Are there any you would never use?
LH: I love colors and materials that remind me of being at the barn: brown saddle leather, black boot leather, brass fittings, wood stall doors, green nature. I love to mix classic British equestrian patterns like tartan, tweed, and houndstooth with modern wools, velvets, and linens. Whenever I can paint a room green, I do it. Green tartan? Even better. I tend to stay away from vinyls or anything that feels plasticky like a 1950s sofa. I’m terrified of bear-skinned rugs, or anything with a skull and teeth for that matter. I also shy away from sparkle and glitter, unless it has unicorns, in which case I will accept it. Who doesn’t love unicorns?
H&S: What would be the most exciting item you could find at a flea market or an antique store to add to your home?
LH: I have a soft spot for vintage silver trophies, old polo equipment, and interesting horse sculptures. I also love one-of-a-kind lamps that end up being conversation starters. Take my Hermès boot lamp, for example. I have never seen anything like it, probably
never will, and all I can think about when I see it is: 1. Where is the other boot? Is there a poor soul hobbling around somewhere on one boot? 2. Why did they mount it to a library book? Did they have a grudge against librarians? And 3. FRAGILE. Must be Italian.
H&S: Give us a little background about you as an equestrian. How has this sport influenced your décor?
LH: I discovered my passion for riding when I was five years old and never wanted to do anything else. I was involved with Pony Club, foxhunting, and played polo for the University of California, Santa Barbara Women’s Equestrian Polo Team. Despite being involved in the equestrian community for almost my entire life, one of the biggest influences on my design tastes stems from my experience working for Ralph Lauren’s Polo Store. It was during that time that I began to understand the connection between
fashion and interior design, and more importantly, that the equestrian lifestyle is widely appreciated, even by non-equestrians. I learned how he was able to seamlessly incorporate old tack into a wood-paneled library with leather chesterfield sofas, floral prints, dripping in cashmere and crystal.
He turned the equestrian lifestyle into a language of luxury. I knew that if a nonequestrian from the Bronx could create a world of equestrian luxury, then surely, I –a lifelong equestrian – could merge my passion for horses and interior design and create my superpower.
H&S: What are some of your design goals for your home for the next couple of years? Any big projects pending?
LH: I never stop designing my own home, much to my husband’s dismay. I always have a new project in mind, which is why I love
being an interior designer with the continual opportunity to use my creativity to design other people’s homes. It gives my husband a break from my nagging urge to add additional equestrian décor into our home. Now, having said that, I may have convinced him to let me design his office with the lure of a Yellowstone meets Double RL Colorado ranch vibe. Stay tuned to see if he gives me the green light. But now it’s in print, so he pretty much has to!
H&S: Describe your equestrian style in five words or less.
LH: Modern interpretation of classic British equestrian.
You can learn more about Lindsay and her Modern Equestrian Shop on Instagram at @ lindsayhunterdesign and @modernequestrianshop. You can shop her favorite equestrian products online at modernequestrianshop.com.
“I love colors and materials that remind me of being at the barn: brown saddle leather, black boot leather, brass fittings, wood stall doors, green nature.”
CURATED by an equestrianby Pam Maley photos courtesy of the artist
Exploring Ellen is a delight.
Everything about her is of one fabric, with myriad threads running through. So many things that we know about her, and many that we don't, have all been woven together to inform her art and her being.
Her lifelong struggle with a difficult speech impediment, the travels throughout her life, the evolution of her art, the emotions that underlined it all – are part of the fabric. Her art is enmeshed in that fabric in ways that are not so apparent in other, equally talented artists.
Her life, as all lives but probably more hers than others, was filled with roadblocks
over which, with sheer courage, amazing talent, and a stubborn refusal to give up, she triumphed, with art filled with whimsical figures and deep feeling that mirror her journey.
The first time I saw Ellen’s work is a day that I will always remember. Debbie Long, owner of Lexington’s iconic and elegant Dudley’s Restaurant, had commissioned two large
pieces that are the focal point in the dining room. They had just been hung, and I couldn’t look away. Simply standing still and taking them in made me feel happy –and filled with a connection to the artist, who at the time was unknown to me.
Her children’s book, Ellen, The Girl Who Found Her Voice, beautifully illustrated by the artist herself, is a poignant autobiography, simply outlined for her target audience: elementary school age children. But the beauty of her illustrations and the words spoken from her heart, appeal on an emotional level to adults as well.
“I think I was born loving them. And if science ever looks into it, I believe they
would find that there is a genetic code that predisposes some of us to have an affinity for horses.” (Bo Derek, from her book Riding Lessons: Everything That Matters in Life I Learned from Horses)
Ellen was born in 1963, in Baltimore. “I came from the womb loving horses,” she told us. “As a little girl, I begged for riding lessons. When I was old enough to drive, I found a place where I could work to ride.” From age 15 to 18 she worked at a girls’ summer camp in Northeast Maryland. “I was the horse girl, tending to the horses and overseeing the riding. I spent the whole summer there, and I was totally hooked.” Having struggled most of her life to communicate with words, the easy, wordless communication with horses touched her soul.
Adding a parallel thread in these years, her mom frequently took her into Baltimore to museums, and was tempted to enroll her in the art programs offered there, but “was encouraged to just let me be, so far as my art was concerned.”
When she was 18, her father bought her grandfather’s farm in Powell County, Kentucky. They moved to the farm, “and it was there that I had my first horse.”
She galloped thoroughbred racehorses at Keeneland in Lexington for a summer after high school graduation, and then for another summer after college. “I decided that I had arrived!” she said, with an upward look and a smile.
Her search for colleges yielded a little gem: Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky. A
liberal arts college with a wonderful but very small fine arts department, it was the right choice for Ellen. “It was so great! It has a wonderful fine arts school with exceptional professors and staff.” She recognized so many of her fellow students as talented artists, that Ellen began to wonder if she was good enough. When she shared her concerns with her professor, his answer [astoundingly!] was that she might not be.
So she changed her focus to Art Therapy, and transferred to the University of Kentucky. But that choice presented yet another hurdle. A specialty in Art Therapy required that you get a degree in Art Education. Once again, her speech impediment got in her way. The Dean of the School of Education said he didn’t think she could be a teacher. Another disappointment; “I thought he was totally
wrong [and so does this writer], but maybe it was a blessing.”
She doubled down and focused on her art classes. “The professors were extremely supportive, and I began to blossom. Painting was my therapy. I painted for myself; it was my path. By the time I had gotten my degree, I realized that I have this gift. It’s amazing how terrible things can influence you in a good way.”
Kasia Pater, in her story about Ellen in Kentucky Magazine, wrote that when she was growing up, she expressed herself differently than others. If, for example, the assignment was to paint a picture of her school, Ellen would paint it as it was viewed from the window of the school bus. “I had a different perspective from the get-go, and my teachers would comment on it.”
Music has always been an important influence in her life, and therefore her art. It might manifest itself in piano keys in a horse’s mane, or on the hem of a dress. “I was exposed to a lot of music. Even at a young age, my mother and my great aunt took my sister and me into Baltimore to hear the symphony and see the ballet. My sister took ballet lessons at the Peabody [The Peabody Institute at Johns Hopkins University is the oldest conservatory in the United States], and I think that was a big influence which resurfaced later when I started painting dancers.”
“One of my first memories of when I was tiny, was twirling around in the front yard, then running to the top of a little hill and raising my arms up like Julie Andrews.” When she was only two or three years old, her mother had taken Ellen and her sister to see The Sound of Music. “I was enthralled. I just bawled when it ended; all that singing –I didn’t want it to be over.”You can see that twirl in the figures in her paintings, evoking the same movement and joy.
When she was at UK, one of the requirements for her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree was to take a music class. “My professor was Daniel Mason, who was very patient and kind with the untethered young girl I was then. He would give me tickets to the Lexington Philharmonic, and I would go every time. I did that until I graduated.”
At the same time, she was seriously working on her painting, and she always paints to music. “Music was profoundly healing, so I started to paint that. It was the first time I had ever felt a connection with myself. By combining music and painting, I had learned a language to communicate with myself and others. And it was pretty quickly apparent that it made other people feel good. It was a total gift. I was communicating with color, shape and lines; that was my way of speaking. I’m not so intense about it now – I’ve been doing it a long time.” Her lyrical, wonderful paintings, full of curves and movement, are born of that communication.
But make no mistake: Ellen also communicates with clarity and insight in spoken conversation.
She doesn’t stop on a painting until she feels she has said something from the heart. “When I start, I don’t always know what it will be, but in the end, it comes from my heart.” None of her paintings are the same, though the appealing, fanciful figures are
similar. “I feel very blessed, but I take it very seriously. I never take it for granted. I try to stay authentic.”
At the time of our interview, Ellen’s horses had both found new vocations. Gstaad, a Swedish warmblood that she bought in Oregon, is enjoying an easy life of retirement. “Jimbo is a draft/quarter horse mix who was rescued, along with 600 mares and foals, from a premarin farm in Canada by her cowgirl friends Virginia and Vicki, who run the Black Butte Ranch in Sisters, Oregon. He is currently teaching handicapped children to ride at her friend’s farm in Berea, Kentucky. Having been away from riding for a while, she had recently started back doing rides with friends.
After earning her BFA, she got back into riding, exercising polo ponies and foxhunters. “I was doing lots of riding.” She got a job as a groom on the track at Keeneland, coming in contact with horses that, though young and healthy, had reached the end of their days as racehorses. “I began to take them and re-school them for a few years. I loved it. I would compete them at the lower levels and then sell them.” During that time, she had a bad fall that resulted in a serious concussion. “That was kind of a turning point for me. It really rang my bell. For months I saw double and lost my equilibrium, and that scared me. Not being able to see gave me a much better appreciation for painting.What would I do if I couldn’t paint?”The thought of having to do something like factory work was less than appealing, to say the least. She sold Harvey, the horse she was working with at the time, to a professional on the Canadian Equestrian Team.
Now what to do?!? “I was bouncing back and forth from working with horses, to painting, and back again.”
During this time, she met a chef who worked at one of the top-tier restaurants in Lexington. They married, and “Mark and I set off to explore the country.” When Mark was offered an executive chef position in Sedona, Arizona, they settled there, and Ellen immersed herself in her painting full time, represented by galleries in Scottsdale, Aspen and Sun Valley.
Another of life’s surprises, their daughter Coco arrived while they were in Sedona. It was unexpected; Ellen didn’t think she was ready; but she was totally enthralled, experiencing that depth of love reserved only for a mother and her child. “Coco gave me even more reason to be taking my life more seriously.”
They moved to Bend, Oregon, where they had a little farm. “It was great. The minute Coco was born, I had started planning and scheming to get a pony, and now we could do that.” During their four years in Bend, they did a lot of skiing, Ellen did a lot of riding, and Coco showed a little. “It was so fun – she was so cute!”
Coco, now an adult living in Brooklyn, is a digital artist, and “uber talented,” her proud mother tells us.
The marriage began to unravel, and Ellen was showing and riding a lot. “It kept me together. One day, when I was riding, I was really, really sad. I could only find the energy to go at a walk. I could feel my horse totally absorb my sadness; he felt it and took some of the burden from me. I knew that, whatever happened, I would take care of him forever.”
It was time to come home to Kentucky. The financial crisis had hit, the galleries representing her had closed, and her
family was there. “I felt I had come full circle.” It became clear that with the increasing demands of her painting and her commissions, she wasn’t going to be able to ride and show as she had in Oregon, but she could be an advocate.
THROW ME A CARROT
In 2018, she developed her own design and publishing company, called THROW ME A CARROT. A portion of the sale of her children’s book, How Horses Make Me Feel, and the sale of beautiful objects that bear her art (Designs by Ellen Skidmore), goes to the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA), an umbrella organization that accredits, inspects and awards grants to approved aftercare organizations, using industry-wide funding.
A year later, she did a large painting that caught the eye of the TAA. They had it made into a poster that was featured at the 145 th running of the Preakness. All proceeds from the remaining posters go directly to TAA.
A few years ago, Ellen decided to do “a little pop-up show” in the beautiful tiny town of Midway, very near Lexington.“It did really well, and I decided that Midway is where I wanted to be.” She bought a house in the center of the picturesque little downtown, and has settled in with that as her home and her gallery.
In addition to her paintings, which are more and more in demand every day, Ellen is working on another book. “This one is about a little boy who worries.” It is certain to be as beautiful as the Ellen book, and something for her fans to anticipate.
There’s a thread that moves through this story, which I’m sure the reader has noticed. It’s that wordless communion, the absolute unspoken understanding, that blends the souls of a horse and the person who cares for him/her. It has certainly been a driving force and a parallel thread in Ellen’s triumphant journey with her art.
To find out more about Ellen and her work, go to ellenskidmore.com.
A Kentucky Treasure
Nestled amongst the horse farms on Lexington’s famed Old Frankfort Pike, is a hidden jewel called the Headley Whitney Museum of Art. Conceived and built by two of the families that were instrumental in the beginnings of the thoroughbred industry in Kentucky, it’s a beautiful legacy for its benefactors: Mr. and Mrs. George Headley, and Mr. and Mrs. Cornelius Vanderbilt (“CV”) Whitney.
The museum’s beginnings lie largely in the decorative arts which are now part of the permanent collection, including George Headley’s jewel work and the unique Shell Grotto he created with thousands of shells collected from around the world. Marylou Whitney’s doll houses are permanently on exhibit, as well as a formal rose garden built in her honor. The museum presents major visual arts exhibitions in spring and fall, often honoring notable Kentucky artists. This year’s spring exhibit, entitled Intertwined, featured an Ellen Skidmore 30-year retrospective; Matthew and Karine Maynard, Architectural Blacksmiths; and an Equine Homage that combined rarely seen 1800 and 1900 English and American equine art, on loan from private collections, as well as selected works by contemporary equine artists including Andre Pater, Booth Malone and Jaime Corum.
Christina Bell, who joined the Headley Whitney Museum as Executive Director and Curator in 2019, told Horse & Style, “Our last five exhibits have focused on notable Kentucky artists of national and international acclaim. This museum has the ability and gallery space to present major retrospective exhibitions of artists who have devoted their life’s work to creating art, and are still creating it here in Kentucky. We are honored to be able to present their comprehensive collections, including work on loan from collectors, along with newly created pieces, in an exhibit which allows viewers to see the development of an artist’s work over decades. We are very fortunate to have this calibre of talent living and working in Kentucky. It is important to support these artists and share their work with the community.”
Of this past spring’s exhibit, Bell says, “I entitled this exhibit Intertwined. It speaks to the combination of Ellen’s whimsical paintings of ethereal figures – horses, animals, nature and music; and the juxtaposition of them with the Maynard’s exquisite sculptural works which have a similar sensibility, but in a totally different medium of metal and bronze. I think so hard about how to meld three artists together. It’s the bane of a curator’s life to think of titles of exhibits, to find one that’s not too precious or too cliche. It must have a little mystery, and it must fit the artists.”
Both Skidmore’s and the Maynard’s work are strongly connected with the horse. The Maynard’s magnificent entry gates and railings can be seen on horse farms
throughout the bluegrass and beyond. Horses are important in Skidmore’s life and art, and her unique non-verbal connection with them can be seen in her work. Ellen also supports the Thouroghbred Aftercare Alliance with her THROW ME A CARROT project. I incorporated Equine Homage in this exhibit as a tribute to the thoroughbred, an object of art that defines the bluegrass, but also as a reminder that these beautiful creatures can transition to a second career and need well-deserved care.”
In anticipation of the exhibition, the Museum contacted Keeneland magazine, which is published four times a year, in Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter, and gives in-depth coverage of the Keeneland Race Course and the equestrian lifestyle, a lifestyle featured regularly in Horse & Style. “We let them know about our planned major Ellen Skidmore retrospective exhibit which was opening during Keeneland’s Spring Meet,” Bell said. “We hoped to get her work on the magazine’s cover, something that had been on Ellen’s bucket list.
With enthusiastic agreement from Keeneland magazine, Skidmore created Winner’s Circle, a large seven-foot painting [pictured below left] in her unmistakable style, incorporating a horse as the central figure among floating flowers, and the signature Keeneland shaped boxwood letters in the center of the racetrack. “It is an amazing piece and we were all thrilled that they featured Ellen’s work on the cover!” Skidmore’s Winner’s Circle was also the signature piece
in Intertwined and was incorporated into the promotional materials for the exhibit.
Three of the museum’s galleries were devoted to the Ellen Skidmore retrospective, and featured over one hundred pieces of her work, beginning with her very early paintings when she was little more than a child, to the present iterations of her own style. One gallery traced the evolution of her art, beginning with her early paintings done for her BFA from the University of Kentucky. One special piece in a display case painted by Ellen at two years old made evident her unique style at an early age.
A second gallery featured Skidmore’s book, Ellen, the Little Girl Who Found Her Voice. It is a poignant biographical story, authored and illustrated by the artist, based on growing up with a severe speech impediment. The gallery is an intimate space with each page and its illustration rendered larger and hung in order, seeming to float along from beginning to end. Benches created by the Maynards especially for this exhibit were placed there so that visitors, particularly children, could read the book while surrounded by it, completely immersed in that quiet place.
The third large gallery featured Skidmore’s art from early 2000 to current work, with its whimsical horses and their companions, articulated in luminous color. One of her early childhood memories was seeing and hearing the movie The Sound of Music, and music has remained a constant companion
and inspiration to her work. She listens to great music while she paints, and symbols of music and musical instruments are woven throughout her paintings. “The imagery of musical instruments is significant because of the unspeakably rich passion I hear from them.” (from her website)
MATTHEW AND KARINE MAYNARD
This husband and wife team are incredibly talented designers, blacksmiths, and artists whose medium is metal and architectural space. Their work is exquisitely designed and eye-poppingly creative in its lyrical use of metal. Their works do indeed, as Bell pointed out, blend well with the graceful lines of Skidmore’s paintings. Their collection, created especially for this exhibit, began at the outdoor entry to the museum, and gracefully wove its way through the exhibition.
As one of the leading architectural artist blacksmith teams in the world, their work has been featured in national and international books and periodicals. Their almost-always-large commissions can be found in homes and businesses from Kentucky to California to Italy, as well as in finely curated event spaces including the Apiary in Lexington.
This collection celebrated the thoroughbred with a presentation of rarely-seen English and American equine art from the 1800s and 1900s. On loan from private collections, the exhibit included familiar and respected names from the world of sporting art: Edward Troye, Sir Alfred Munnings, Henry Stull, Milton Menasco, Henri De Lattre, Peter Howell, George Claxton and Thomas Coates, to name a few, as well as works by contemporary artists, including three pieces by Andre Pater, who was featured in our Spring 2020 edition.
Intertwined concluded at the end of June, giving way to Aqueous, a national juried water-color exhibition featuring 60-70 works from artists across the country, presented in partnership with the Kentucky Watercolor Society. The Museum will reopen with the Aqueous exhibit on weekends, August 28 through November 6, from 10 am – 4pm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday when visitors can enjoy this exhibit, the permanent collection, Shell Grotto, garden and grounds. Admission is $10 and is complimentary for children 12 and under.
A BRIEF HISTORY
The Headley Whitney Museum, founded in 1968, is predominantly the creation of
artist-jeweler-collector, George Headley, to display his personal collection of bibelots and boxes. After studying art in New York, he traveled to Paris to continue his studies. He was drawn to the raffish, flamboyant lifestyles of artists like Picasso, Dali and Modigliani, and enjoyed that life for a few years, while discovering a talent for jewelry design that he put into practice designing for Cartier and other French jewelers.
Returning to the US, he opened a jewelry boutique in 1938, in the Bel Air Hotel frequented by Hollywood notables. The story goes that he would put his jewelry on his little dachshund, and send him out to wander around the pool among the glittering guests - movie stars of the time. They would admire the jewelry at their leisure, and then come into the boutique to buy - an unconventional, but creative form of advertising, to say the least. Ernie, the diminutive model, is buried on the museum grounds along with several other of George’s beloved dachshunds.
Headley had always toyed with the idea of making small, beautiful objects from precious jewels and rare materials, and after about a decade in California, he returned to Kentucky to create his bibelots. [Bi be
lot: a small, decorative object - a trinket.]. Bibelots are small, whimsical designs whose purpose is only to look pretty and be admired. They serve no utilitarian function, which is probably their attraction to wealthy collectors.
The museum was founded in 1968, by George and his wife Barbara, to house his collection and share it with the public. A two-room structure was built, with one room to house the bibelots, and the other to house his library of fine arts books.
In the early 1970s, shell collecting became quite fashionable. Headley, remembering the grottos built in the cellars of wealthy Englishmen to show off collections from their travels, decided he would build a shell grotto above ground, with abundant light, to showcase his extensive shell collection. He converted a three-car garage into his grotto, and spent a year creating a quiet space reminiscent of the ocean, with shells covering every surface. The grotto is still an enchanting part of the museum tour.
THE DOLL HOUSES
In 1978, C.V. Whitney, brother of Barbara Headley, and his wife Marylou, donated the four Whitney dollhouses and $1,000,000 to build a wing onto the museum to house them. Built as exact exterior and interior replicas of their homes in Lexington and
New York, and with the same care and unflinching attention to detail as Queen Mary’s Dollhouses in the Royal Trust, they are truly a treasure.
The doll houses that are on permanent exhibit at the museum are a story unto themselves. Commissioned by Marylou Whitney for her daughter Cornelia, they are an exquisitely detailed miniaturization of Maple Hill, the estate that was home to the family.
“Maple Hill has known sadness, but basically it’s a very happy house. A much loved house. Somehow I think the dollhouse expresses this on sight, in the way that only something so tiny and compact can be profound. A poem of only a few lines often says more than pages of text. And I look upon Cornelia’s dollhouse[s] as a kind of love poem dedicated to Maple Hill and the people who have lived there.” (from Cornelia Vanderbilt Whitney’s Dollhouse, by Marylou Whitney)
Horse & Style has often featured grand, historic houses. This is one in miniature. The original incarnation of the house was built in 1791 by a couple that had traveled from Virginia to make a new life on the frontier.. Made of logs from the recently dismantled fort on land they had claimed, it was not so grand as the house they had left,
or the house it would become, but a fine house nonetheless.
Over the years, Maple Hill and its families thrived, until, with no family living in it, it fell into disrepair in the years following the Great Depression. In 1951, C.V. (Sonny) Whitney fell in love with the house, and bought it with its surrounding land. He took his young bride, Marylou, to see it, and with only a tiny bit of dismay, she accepted the challenge of bringing it back to life. “With my imagination and his money, I knew we could do it,” she declared. And do it she did. It received a new façade designed by her brother-inlaw, George Headley, and along with the gardens, was restored to its greatness. Still a grand home, and still lived in and cared for by her second husband, who outlived her as she outlived Sonny, Maple Hill lives on.
When her daughter Cornelia was an adolescent, Marylou decided that she wanted to reproduce Maple Hill as it was then, in miniature, for Cornelia. The detail with which this was done is astonishing. Magazines and books are reproduced in tiny form, with readable pages. Every family photo on every table or dresser was carefully copied. Oil paintings and rugs were painstakingly reproduced. Tiny silver julep cups were actually made of silver. Even to this day, the kitchen is stocked with miniature canned goods.
There are four doll houses on permanent display: the main house with an elevated façade; the pool house decked out for a party given in honor of houseguests Princess Margaret and her husband Lord Snowden; the guest house; and the art studio. If the doll houses were the only things on display, the trip to the museum would be well worthwhile. One could spend the better part of a day admiring them.
Bell’s enthusiasm combines with her knowledge and her natural welcoming demeanor to make visitors feel the magic of the art on display. “This museum is a truly unique treasure. I am thrilled to share it and bring great art to all of our community, as well as to visitors to the Bluegrass,” she tells us, and she is doing just that. The museum is a wonderful, quiet place to immerse yourself in beautiful art in a lovely, pastoral setting right in the very heart of bluegrass horse country.
To learn more about the museum and the upcoming exhibit Aqueous, go to headley-whitney.org.
SPLITPhotos © Winslow Photography
Equestrianism Meets Artificial Intelligence
With the society-shaking cataclysm of COVID-19, technology has launched forward to make new connections previously thought to be impossible. These improvements have permeated every inch of our civilization, and the niche of equestrianism is included among them.
To that end: meet the Pivo Pod. Named this year’s SPOGA Horse Top Innovations winner, this latest innovation in smartphone technology incorporates new AI tracking software to allow riders the ability to film and critique without having to dismount.
ONE SMART SETUP
The Pivo Pod is a smartphone mount that is approximately 3 inches tall with a 360˚ turning radius. It connects to phones through Bluetooth and can create custom videos and photos through the Pivo app. Once connected, a simple touch of a button will initiate the tracking software that will focus on the horse until it is told to stop.
It has various filming modes (Slow, Normal, Fast, and Frenzy), that help with capturing the specific scenario that the user has in mind. Each film speed is tailored to provide the best quality, whether it is a simple trail ride or a blinding fast jump-off round. The software also includes Auto Zoom, so that you are able to clearly see you and your horse even when you move away from the device.
You can also set the Pivo pods to Smart Capture mode. This takes a succession of photos of you and your horse automatically when you approach a jump. So, you no longer have to beg a friend to take them for you or try to take screenshots from videos.
Matias Fernandez, a successful Chilean Grand Prix rider based out of Sonoma, California, states, “I really enjoyed using
it. I often ride and jump my bigger horses early in the mornings, so it is hard to find someone to video me. With this, I didn’t have to. I just had to push a button and it videoed me by itself. I didn’t even have to get off my horse!”
For Fernandez, the product was a gift from a long-time client, Victoria Guthrie. Guthrie had found the product by chance
on Amazon and thought it would be a nice tool for Fernadez to use for his own training in between horse shows.
On the idea of intended audience, spokesperson Dirk Foster remarked, “It’s not just a product for professionals. We designed it for everyone, no matter what level or discipline of riding you do.”
There are different models of the device, each made to tailor to various audiences. In concert, the product has several accessories available, such as the remote, tripod, and travel cases. The Pivo apps are also all free on the AppStore and connect with the applicable hardware available nearby.
Pivo, Inc Chief Executive Officer and creator of the Pivo Pod Ken Kim is a software engineer based out of Korea and works at the forefront of AI development.
Remarking on his innovation’s receipt of the SPOGA award, he explained that his company works tirelessly to create stateof-the-art products to minister to content creators around the globe. Foster pointed out, “One of the great things about this product is how available it is to people. It’s not expensive, it’s mobile, and it’s easy to use.”
ZOOM FINALLY COMES TO HORSEBACK RIDING
On top of implementing the AI tracking software, these software components bring remote learning to the equestrian sport. Trainers can connect with their students over long distances and teach them as though they were standing in the ring with them without leaving their kitchen table or favorite Starbucks.
This tackles the logistical issue of horse shows. Any trainer or client can tell you that one of the biggest issues of boarding at a competition barn is what to do when your trainer goes to a show without you.
Oftentimes, coaches are away from home for two weeks in a row. But sometimes, they can be away for months on end for circuits like the winter shows at Thermal or Wellington. As a junior or amateur, it can be hard to maintain the structure and integrity of your riding without someone to push you. On top of that, staying behind can be disruptive to team morale. Pivo’s filming and remote learning capabilities provide a possible solution.
And with these struggles in mind, Foster brought up a new avenue provided by Pivo,
“This product gives people the chance to be independent. Before, to be able to capture your riding, you would have to hire a camera crew or rely on a family member. Now, everyone, including juniors and amateurs, can freely film themselves and their mounts without being disruptive to their training regimens. More than that, they can become Solo-Creators.”
NOT JUST FOR HORSES
But Pivo isn’t just available to the horseloving community. Its uses have been discovered in areas even the original creators didn’t see coming. Social media has embraced it with full force with help from influencers like YouTube star Raleigh Link and Italian TikTok celebrity Gioele Ossola. With the various filming capabilities, people can make photos and videos with all kinds of effects like Magic Edge and 50/50. And the Pivo software can connect directly with its user’s favorite platforms like Instagram or Facebook. Now, people are using Pivo to capture their most post-able moments.
The pods have also been utilized for more practical economic needs. It entered the Real Estate business to help film house interiors as well as conduct remote viewings for prospective clients. With its connective capacity, agents are more able to market an available property to a buyer without having to deal with the logistical drawbacks of FaceTime or Zoom.
This versatility can be applied to almost any potential business. Anything from retail to stock trading could benefit from the inclusion of the Pivo pods. After all, it provides people with the same remote abilities as previous software, without having to deal with the cumbersome realities of moving a camera around so people can see properly.
WHERE CAN I BUY IT?
The Pivo Pod is now available in 138 countries, after recently entering the US market. They are easy to order on the Pivo website (www.getpivo.com), or they can be purchased on Amazon. With widespread popularity among European users, it won’t be long before it becomes a staple in every American stable. But with their versatility, Pivo Pods could soon find their way to being an everyday necessity.
8. Kylee Arbuckle and Gatsby win the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby 9. It is best to win together! Wendy Krohn on Bushido and Chelsea Brittner on Berry De Maillet share a handshake as they accept their awards 10. Patrick Seaton rides Veronica over the Planned Parenthood Northern California “Jump For Reproductive Rights” jump 11. Mare Ehlers and Carambo Z take a quiet moment between classes 12. Elena Haas and Centana burn and turn in the Prestige Saddles Welcome Prix, and ended up easily taking first 13. Matt Sereni is all smiles in the awards ceremony of the Modern Horse USHJA National Hunter Derby where he and Glow Up took first place 14. Winner of the Planned Parenthood Norcal 1.35m Open Jumper Classic, Mariano Alario and Edesa’s Vidal 8, fly over the tulip oxer 15. Elena Haas and Global Jativa finish their victory lap after winning the $40,000 Hygain Feeds Grand Prix and Global Jativa
HORSE cornerby Sarah Welk Baynum
THE MANY MOUNTS OF
A manda Gomez grew up in an environment that every horse-crazy little girl dreams about: the backside of the racetrack. With a jockey for a father and a mother who was an assistant trainer at the time, it’s no surprise the now-professional rider turned horses into a career.
“Spending days at the track is what really developed my love for horses,” Gomez said. “I kind of fell into the show jumping scene because that’s what my mom grew up doing too. As I got better, my Mom and Dad started to bring in horses off the track for me to retrain. Of course, it was challenging at times, but looking back now these were the horses that made me the rider I am today. I slowly started developing these horses day by day and eventually had
horses to show, and that’s where I started,” Gomez says of her background.
Today, Gomez rides for Rising Star Equestrian. Her string of horses include everything from off-the-track Thoroughbreds to Westphalians.
Coldplay, a 14 year old gelding who’s known as “Tito” around the barn, is one of Gomez’s Westphalian horses and was actually given to her by a good friend.
“My friend imported him from Belgium and rode him here for a couple of years on the circuit in the 1.35 meter classes,” Gomez says about the gelding. “He’s very quirky and needs a very quiet, soft ride, as he can build and gets nervous easily. That
aside, he’s probably the most talented horse I’ve ever sat on. I currently show him in the 1.45 meter National Prix’s.”
Gomez told us Coldplay enjoys being ridden bare back more than being ridden in a saddle. “I’ll occasionally even jump him bareback to keep him enjoying his job!” Gomez said. Her plans for the future with Coldplay include jumping him in the 1.50+ meter classes competitively.
Another of Gomez’s Westphalian horses, a mare named So Fly, is also her very first home bred sport horse. “She’s by the world famous Flexible out of a Borrego mare, which is another horse that my dad had great success with,” Gomez said. “So Fly’sAmanda Gomez and Coldplay; photo © Lindsey Long Photography Amanda Gomez and So Fly; photo © Brooke Marie Photography
got that Flexible attitude and is a talent! She definitely will be a horse to watch for as she develops.” So Fly’s personality shines in the barn as well, and she knows how to smile for cookies and pictures.
Gomez told us her future plans for this mare are to continue developing and showing her in her age classes. “Hopefully winning a young horse championship too!” Gomez adds, regarding goals for the mare’s future.
Of course, true to her roots, Gomez has several Thoroughbred mounts. “I’ve always had a love for the Thoroughbreds,” Gomez said. “I developed one of my off-the-track Thoroughbreds into a fantastic grand prix horse and one of my top horses. I try to retrain and rehome as many off-thetrack Thoroughbreds as possible! I still prefer their type over a typical big boned warmblood. Can’t beat the heart of a good Thoroughbred!”
All Star, also known as Ben around the barn, is an off-the-track Thoroughbred with a very special story. “This is a horse that my mom and dad bred to be a top
quality racehorse,” Gomez said about All Star. “My Dad actually rode his sire Pioneer of the Nile on multiple occasions and even placed second in the Kentucky Derby with him. Ben was born at our farm and has been with us for the entirety of his life. When he was just a yearling, he jumped and cleared the pasture fence. At that moment I turned to my mom, laughed and said that’s going to be my Grand Prix horse!”
Gomez’s mother was merely amused by this, because All Star’s sire’s stud fee was a whopping $150,000 at the time, and he’s also out of an A.P Indy mare. With exceptional bloodlines like that, Gomez’s parents clearly had high hopes for the then-yearling’s racing future. But, as many racing and horse professionals have learned the hard way, sometimes horses have other plans.
A year or so later, Ben made it clear he wanted nothing to do with racing. “We took him home (from the track) and that’s where we found out what he really enjoyed doing, which was jumping! Fast forward to now, he’s 9 years old and one of my top horses, and shows in the National Grand Prix’s!”
The Thoroughbred Makeover, an annual Thoroughbred retraining competition held at the renowned Kentucky Horse Park, is a competition to which Gomez is no stranger. One of Gomez’s current Thoroughbred mounts, Racing Ace aka Ace, is one of her two mounts for the 2022 Thoroughbred Makeover. “He was given to me for the event by trainer Charles Treece and his wife Debi. He’s only four and has a fantastic future in front of him!”
Racing Ace is by Upstart out of a Van Nistelrooy mare. Gomez will be entering Racing Ace in the show hunter and show jumper divisions at the makeover and has her sights set on the title of “Most Wanted Thoroughbred” for Ace as well.
Gomez said after the unfortunate passing of her father, she felt compelled to promote the Thoroughbred breed as a whole, especially within the hunter/ jumper world. “My Dad always had a special kind of love for the horse and gave all credit to these amazing animals that gave him their all on the track. He always wanted the best for them,” Gomez said.Amanda Gomez and All Star; photo © Grand Pix Photography Amanda Gomez and Racing Age; photo © Brooke Marie Photography
MANY HORSES, BUT ONE FEED: HYGAIN
As many Thoroughbred owners know, keeping weight on this and other highperformance breeds, can be a special kind of challenge. For Gomez, this is where Hygain came into play for her horses.
“Hygain has been absolutely life changing. I have never seen results like you get with it. All the products truly work and the horses love them! I struggled for many years with horses coming straight off the track. They come in fit, but of course, lean. As time goes on, they begin to lose muscle due to the drastic change in workload. I’ve found that if you immediately start them on a scoop of Trugain, they start to gain weight and hold more muscle without becoming hot or fresh!
I also love the Trucare as a base in all my horses’ diets along with Flexion and Safeguard. Hygain truly keeps them happy, healthy and beautiful!”
Gomez and her string of horses usually show on the West Coast and compete year round. “We love The Nilforushan Equisport Tournament put on by Ali Nilforushian. Ali has put together a Thoroughbred program at his shows as well, making it more affordable to show our Thoroughbreds at top venues. Which I admire and use often!”
“We also love to attend the West Palms shows put on by Dale Harvey. They always put on a fantastic show! Great classes and always fantastic hospitality,” Gomez said of some of her favorite show circuits.
One of Gomez’s favorite recent events with one of her horses, Sky, was when she won the 5-year-old classic at The Oaks, which was is quite the accomplishment. When we asked Gomez what her favorite memory competing with her horses is, she mentioned a class with her horse Ben. “Ben winning the 1.30 meter classic at Riders Cup against all the big warmbloods, is one of my favorite competition memories of all time!” Gomez said.
Whatever her goals – in the show ring and otherwise – Gomez is sure to continue achieving them. Her careful attention to the health and happiness of her horses ensures each one will achieve their full potential. Those are lucky horses indeed.photo © Entrigue Consulting
CATIE’S commentaryby Catie Staszak
A WEC Wonderland
I was around 10 years old when I visited the Winter Equestrian Festival for the first time. For as many Sundays as I could convince my mother to bring me to Wellington, I’d pick up a start list, order a smoothie and sit on the grassy hill that overlooked the International Arena and spend the afternoon watching the Grand Prix, wearing my paddock boots and a loose-fitting T-shirt with some sort of horse on it. I noted every score and cheered especially hard when Margie Engle jumped clear or Laura Chapot won a class with her 15.2 hand chestnut, Little
Big Man. I’d then go home with plans to emulate the riders on my pony. I’d get to show myself at WEF for the first time at age 13.
Traveling to five-star, World Cup™ and Nations Cup events around the globe, I am often so focused on my work that I lose that starry eyed look I had as a child watching those grand prix classes. But when I brought my horse to the World Equestrian Center – Ocala this summer, that feeling was back in the most fullcircle of moments.
You’ve surely seen the spectacular backdrop in Andrew Ryback’s photographs of the aptly named WEC Grand Arena, but I can assure you, neither still image nor video can truly prepare you for the magnificence that is the Roberts family’s astounding venue in Ocala, FL. When it comes to the horses, this team has seemingly thought of everything. There are no buggy manure piles. Instead, manure is organized in labeled garbage cans that are picked up daily. The massive stalls, all in permanent structures (A through Q, at least) are fully matted and padded, with built in fans. My 17.1 hand horseShowing at WEC - Ocala with my 8-year-old, Petey; photo © Andrew Ryback Photography
even had extra room, and you could have comfortably fit at least two of my trainer’s daughter’s small ponies inside. Every barn has a bathroom and a vending machine; and water spigots for horses are located at each end of the aisle.
A walk around the bridle paths could easily become a 40-minute trail ride. An expansive hacking ring is accompanied by no less than three lungeing arenas. The barn aisles and indoor arenas are connected by overhangs, so the Florida sun can be avoided by those wishing to stay under cover. The restaurants offer both sit-down and takeaway options for on-the-go exhibitors, and they always share a treat with your dog. For this dairyallergic individual, the bakery (Emma’s Patisserie) offers vegan blueberry muffins, and the Yellow Pony Pub is a must-visit.
And yes, that view from the Grand Arena is pretty spectacular. Think: Disney World for horses.
In June, WEC hosted its first ever FEI events, by all accounts a big win for the
sport, as this place has the infrastructure and atmosphere to host a championship. I had the pleasure of commentating both of the venue’s CSI3* Grand Prix events, and together with ClipMyHorse.TV, we put together both a pre-show of recorded interviews as well as a live take above the arena between the first round and jump-off.
It’s not often I get to both work and ride at a venue, but with my longtime trainer (17 years!) Alan Korotkin onsite with the farm, my 8-year-old and I were able to get some really valuable ring time. What a treat it was to have FEI Level 4 course designer Guilherme Jorge setting even our schooling courses! “Petey” jumped his biggest tracks to date without batting an eye, in what was just our third show together.
When I was 13, my parents gave me the push I needed to leave my trainer at the time to join Alan, Kirsty Korotkin and Susan Tuccinardi at Castlewood Farm. When I had voiced my goals to my previous trainer, she told me I didn’t have the name to make it anywhere in the
sport, and those words would eat at me for years. But when I sat down with Alan as a freshman in high school and told him my goals, he looked back and told me with confidence that I’d achieve them. He has yet to be wrong.
I have a lot of new goals now, and most of them involve my work. But no matter my crazy schedule, Alan, along with Kirsty and Susan, continue to make things happen for me in the saddle, time and time again.
I couldn’t help but ask Alan if he’d be my co-commentator at WEC, and as I sat down at my mic next to the man I respect more than anyone in this industry, I had some of the most fun I’ve ever had at a horse show.
I can’t help but look back and feel immense gratitude for just how far I have come in this industry. I’ve vowed never to lose those starry eyes for our sport.
I presented the first FEI Grand Prix in the World Equestrian Center - Ocala’s history with my longtime coach, Alan Korotkin
1. Aya Clear and Famorku fly over the brand new #WeRideTogether jump. #WeRideTogether is an organization that supports sexual abuse awareness in equestrian sport 2. Jamie Gornall is all smiles on V-Power 11 after a good ride in the Wells Fargo Grand Prix Arena 3. Dr. Courtney Lewis and Calendar Girl show the winning form that led them to win every class in their amateur modified hunter division 4. Leonardo Diterma and Hope Glynn take the high option in the $10,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby 5. Winner of the Giant Steps Open Flat Off, MJ Kaplan, is all smiles as she grabs her Hermès prize 6. Starting the week out… Kylee Arbuckle and Quantano goin’ up on a Wednesday! 7. Winner of the $40,000 #WeRideTogether Grand Prix, Mariano Alario on Edesa’s Vidal 8, celebrates with a big show for the crowdPhotos © Alden Corrigan Media
SHP SUMMER CLASSIC – SONOMA HORSE PARK, PETALUMA, CA
Dear Dr. Carrie,
I am asking the million-dollar medal finals question! What do you think are the most important mental skills needed to compete at my best as I enter into the regional qualifiers with indoors as my goal? I really want to ride my best and worry that the pressure will get in my way.Signed, Medal Finals Rider
Dear Medal Finals Rider,
The most important elements that pave the way for peak performance with horses are being present, humble, and clear with your horse and yourself – every single stride.
Nothing else really matters.
Being present means practicing being with your breath and observing your breath for 2-10 minutes every day. It means ditching the cell phone and engaging with your horse from the moment of connection all the way through the ride. When focused on the present moment you will have a heightened awareness of your senses, which cause your mind-body connection to be sharper. Resist the urge to let the stress hormones that commonly accompany competition cause a narrative of worry to take hold. In the present moment, there is no narrative, no story, just your horse, you, the rhythm and the track.
Being humble means keeping your expectations aligned with what is possible. As a fierce competitor you want to win every class you enter, especially medal finals! But an honest and humble approach is detached from ego and allows you to show up and do the best you can with what you have in the moment. An honest and humble rider is free
to ride their best no matter what happens, and can act on the spot if a challenge arises. Being humble and empowered at the same time is a state of grace that winning rounds exude. Recall when you have had this combination of emotions and practice bringing it to your daily rides so it becomes a part of you.
Being clear is about communication with yourself and your mount. Being clear means you are easy to understand and interpret. Negative emotions can cause confusion because we tend to want to ignore them to “fake it until you make it.” Avoid denial at all costs! If you are nervous, scared, worried, or frustrated, allow these feelings to come through.They are not the only emotions you are experiencing, so rather than grasping onto the hard ones, investigate your entire spectrum of feelings.You may realize you are nervous, excited, worried, confident, self-conscious, and strong all at the same time. Be clear with how you feel before you ride so that when you are competing, your emotions don’t confuse your horse or your mind-body connection.
Above all, go in the ring with a sense of curiosity and confidence.You belong in this class. Let yourself go out there and do your best in this moment. Take three deep breaths and do what you love!
Dear Dr. Carrie,
I am an “older amateur” and I feel like I am going backwards with my riding. My trainer asked me to talk to you as she thinks it is all in my head and I tend to agree. I am very frustrated and not sure what to do to get back on track. Please help!
Signed, Older Amateur
Dear Older Amateur,
Your challenge and confusion are a subject that is close to my heart as I have experienced some of the same in recent years as well. Without projecting my own experience onto yours, I will share my philosophy about changes for athletes due to age or injury:
1. Even if you do this for a living, your mental and physical health are the most important indicators for making changes and living a long and healthy life. So, listen carefully to both your emotions and body.
2. “Going backwards” is not always a sign of decline. It is often a cue to slow down and return to basics in order to improve performance at higher levels.
3. Horse showing is addictive. Athletes find themselves chasing their last high and reaching for higher heights after coming down from recent peak performances. The dopamine (positive) and/or cortisol (stress) chemicals released in the body and brain that initially support the sharp focus needed to compete are the same chemicals that lead to addiction. Be aware of your personal narrative about your experience to explore this aspect of your path. Let your mind, not your chemicals, make decisions.
4. Bigger, better, faster, stronger are the inclinations for healthy and/or young bodies. Continuing to compete when the mind or body are not comfortable will likely end in unfavorable results.
5. Take some time to zoom out and think about how horse shows and training fit into your life. Get radically honest with yourself. Sometimes we need to have an exit, downsize or restructure plan in order to continue to enjoy this current stage in life. Even if you are just taking a break due to school, work, or family and not retiring, having a clear plan about what you are doing and where you are going on the path of life will help you focus on what’s most important.
Athletes have few models for downshifting and making changes to their sport. I am well versed in this challenge, so after taking some time to ponder the above elements, let’s talk!
Dr. Carrie Wicks divides her time between her private sport psychology consulting and family therapy practice, traveling with athletes, and writing. She completed her doctorate in psychology while researching the mental practices of equestrian athletes. Her passions include horses, yoga, mountain biking, skiing, and time in nature with animals. If you would like to ask a question for this column or ask about a complimentary Performance Strategy session, please contact Carrie.
Carrie Wicks, Ph.D. | email@example.com | drcarriewicks.comPhoto © Ashley Neuhof
A ndrée-Anne Brunet’s love for horses started at the young age of five when her father placed her on a pony at the Toronto Zoo. This simple gesture ignited a life-long passion that has continued to evolve over the years.
Shortly after this experience, Brunet attended equestrian summer camps, followed by regular riding lessons. Even at an early age, she would take pictures of events and analyze them, always looking for ways to make improvements. Brunet discovered that she could combine her love of horses with a newfound interest in photography after being gifted a small point-and-shoot Sony camera. Her parents would drive her to horse shows just so she could take creative shots of those competing.
Since then, Brunet has had the privilege of photographing in some of the most spectacular locations around the world. She has captured images of Tinkers in the Baltic Sea in Poland, Halflingers in the Austrian and Italian Alps, Andalusians, and even a once in a lifetime moment photographing a KWPN stallion running through a flock of ducks. She has worked extremely hard at the most prestigious, international horse shows, building a reputation documenting equestrian events.
Brunet continues to work on her imagery, focusing on capturing life as it happens, the bond between horse and rider, and the many facets of horse showing. Her creativity is endless as she continues to push the boundaries and create works of art that showcase equestrian life.
WHERE TO FIND
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Equus Now! 8956 Cotter St. Lewis Center, OH 43035
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Equestrian’s Concierge LLC 7600 Lakeville Highway Petaluma, CA 94954
Equi-Products Highway 22X W Calgary, AB, Canada
Horse Country Saddlery 60 Alexandria Pike Warrenton, VA 20186
Maryland Saddlery 14924 Falls Rd Butler, MD 21023
Olson’s Tack Shop 11408 NE 2nd Place Bellevue, WA 98004
Tack N Rider 3031 Fortune Way, Suite A9 Wellington, FL 33414
Valencia Saddlery 11355 Foothill Blvd. Lake View Terrace, CA 91342
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a d e f o r M a n e s H o r s e S h o w E m e r g e n c y K i
It’s All Gucci...
And it really is – in both senses of the phrase. This handbag is playfully modeled after an upside down riding helmet, but this purse is structured to carry more than the usual pair of gloves or spurs. The upper bag continues the equestrian inspiration, complete with chocolate leather, top handle, and rope strap. When you sling this Gucci canvas-jacquard bag over your shoulder, life truly is alllllll good.
Equestrian Leather and Canvas-Jacquard Shoulder Bag, GUCCI, $3,900
M ARTIN FUCHS AND CHAPLIN WON THE FEI JUMPING WORLD CUP FINAL!
Renaissance congratulates Mar tin Fuchs for his 1st World Cup victory . What a thrilling milestone! Mar tin rides Chaplin and The Sinner in the Renaissance F2S s addle.
ShowPlus® is the first of its kind horse and rider benefits program. Designed to reimburse out-of-pocket costs that may not be covered by insurance, ShowPlus® allows riders and owners alike to compete with peace of mind.
Horses and riders that are entered & registered into any competition that offers ShowPlus® benefits are automatically enrolled in the ShowPlus® protection program.