PREMIER - June 2022

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Joe Whitt

ad by Natalie Zvanya | Photos by Cody Parmenter

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SELECT ALL AROUND EVENTS

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the hunter under saddle

FASHION DESTINATION

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T

he hunt coat... It might be the most hated piece of show attire to ever present itself in a show pen. The dreaded, “I can’t move, lock in that sweat, block style, Sponge Bob square” coat. But it is also the item of clothing that says, “I am ready to show!” As exhibitors, there is a need for that familiar formality, the feeling of that hunt coat buttoned up before heading in the ring. But why is formality required and so appealing? There is truth to the saying that you should dress for the job you want, not the job you have, even in the show pen. The hunt coat has been around forever, but in recent years, has made leaps and bounds in fashion and comfort. If a hunt coat causes you to take a second look, chances are it’s a Boo-Yah Custom Clothing creation.

What the Boo-Yah... The design duo behind the Virginia/North Carolina based hunt seat brand, Boo Yah, are Elizabeth “Spike” Brewer, and Megan Brown. The pair have known each other for as long as they can remember. “We met thanks to the horse industry and being at horse shows. I don’t remember a specific meeting moment, we just always knew each other,” Megan said. Both loved showing on the paint horse circuit, which then led to NSBA and larger shows. The Boo-Yah Custom Clothing founders both showed in the hunter under saddle ring and were well acclimated to the Sponge Bob square coat. “I was so frustrated trying to find a hunt coat that would fit and not cost a fortune to be altered,” Megan said. “A lot of my guy friends were going to tailors for custom made suits, and I thought, if they can make a suit they can make a hunt coat!” She worked with a tailor that has a family owned business in Thailand.

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It took some time to get it right, but soon Megan was sporting her own coats and shirts and people asked where did you get those? The idea of a business was born. It was at that point Megan and Spike partnered up. Megan knew Spike could bring her excellent design and sales abilities to the business. One thing led to another, and by the fall of 2011, the co-founders had drawn up a business plan and launched their own version of the perfect hunt coat. Boo-Yah Custom Clothing was born. They combined their equestrian interests with their knowledge of design and business strategy. For their debut product, they had a black coat made with a trend setting black shiny fabric. “On our way to have pictures taken of it, we had more than 10 people stop us. It is our most popular look,” Spike said. That first coat went on to do big things. “Colleen Bull wore that jacket on Timeless Assets when she won at the Paint World Show.” When asked how the name BooYah came about, the friends both laughed. “We were at Spike’s mom’s kitchen table in Ohio, trying to figure out a name. We first tossed around Brown and Brewer, when out of nowhere, Spike’s husband Jody yelled out “Boo-Yah” in excitement about something. We both just looked at each other. He said he saw it on a billboard somewhere. But the name was perfect.” Boo-Yah is the perfect expression of excitement when trying on one of their coats and shirts, and for the win you get with it on.

Megan and Spike carefully placed their clothes on the best hunt seat riders they knew, and the approach worked. There was so much desire for something new response to Boo Yah creations was overwhelming, and in one fell swoop, the notion of hunt coats as stiff and boring was a memory. Megan Brown & Elizabeth “Spike” Brewer | Co-Founders PREMIER | JUNE 2022 | 17


Elizabeth and Megan have since dressed multiple World, Congress, NSBA, Morgan, and Arabian champions, “but we love dressing riders from any and all levels and making them look and feel good in the hunter ring,” Spike said. Guiding that first hunt coat purchase is always exciting as you are bringing someone into the industry, and guiding them in the right direction is so important. What most do not know however, is that the Boo-Yah brand has only two employees – Spike and Megan. They run the brand and inventory themselves giving each item a true touch of personal service. Every piece that holds their tag has at one point in the design process come from them. They take great pride in anything that leaves their hands and ends up on client’s backs. Spike is the Chief Creator and provides the customer service and sales - which if you have worked with her, you know her attention for detail and service. It wasn’t long though before the co-founders realized how important it was to get the fabrics and textures physically in front of people and not just online and at the horse shows. This approached started with a partnership with Kathy Williams Tails at the Quarter Horse Congress. “We now have Show Me Again (Wendy Brown) carrying our items on the west coast, and Head to Tail Boutique (Kelley Martin) - formally known as Kathy Williams Tails on the east coast,” Spike shared. Megan handles the behind-the-scenes business aspects for the company. She shared, “The booths and pop-up stalls at all the major shows have been a huge addition. People can see and feel the coats and shirts firsthand to feel the difference in fabric quality. We can advertise online to everyone, but once they put one on, they personally experience the fit and quality.” “Wendy and Kelley are wonderful to work with. They give us insight about what is selling well. They make it possible for our clients to have a chance to feel

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and hold the actual items,” Spike said. “They have been huge for our business and wonderful partners as smart business women.”

EFFECTIVE SHOW ATTIRE BEGINS WITH SHOW KNOWLEDGE Effective show clothing begins with knowledge, knowledge of the type of riding that will be done while wearing the clothes. Both Spike and Megan are no strangers to the horse industry or the hunter under saddle arena. Spike grew up on a farm in Ohio. “I grew up on a 200-acre farm. I’ve always been a farm girl and had horses. My first horse was a pony and I was in 4-H with and learned a ton there. I got my first paint horse when I was around 11 and started showing then and have been showing ever since. I lived in a horse filled world and I still look like a farm kid out here in the middle of North Carolina on our farm.” Spike has not only shown for years but she and her family have successfully bred and raised multiple world champions. Megan on the other hand was not surrounded by horses in the suburbs of South Carolina, but was horse obsessed from the start. “I met a girl in first grade, and she had a pony for sale. My Grandma bought it for me, and I learned how to trail ride. I didn’t start showing until middle school with 4-H and pony club. I got a paint mare when I was 15 and have shown paints and the hunter under saddle ever since. I’m even breeding paints for the hunter under saddle ring now and raising them.” The Boo Yah partners know exactly what it feels like to shop for, wear, and show in hunt seat attire. They have decades of experience. Most importantly, they learned what wasn’t working. Not many fashion lines can claim that the owners have sat in the very position of the clients that are purchasing from them. “We personally know what

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it’s like to ride and show in our designs. How well you can move in them, how the fabric will look on you, and how they hold up,” Spike shared. “We want to make the best product that will keep riders, just like us, successful.”

FOLLOW THE FABRIC Think of a hunt coat like a recipe. You might start out with the same base ingredient, but the addition of fabric, pattern, color, and fit can change the end expression entirely. “We are passionate about horses, fashion, and people. We design our items using our knowledge of riding hunter under saddle, clothing materials, sewing techniques, and clothing construction,” Megan described. “Every design element, from material, texture, and pattern, is chosen to improve the fit and appearance of our brand. And we make sure that the colors, patterns, and fabrics are as beautiful and trendy as they are functional,” Spike shared. “We still work with the small family business in Thailand that Megan found years ago. We have an established partnership with them as fabric supplier and manufacturer of our clothing.” Megan has even taken a trip to visit in Bangkok and to see the handmade process firsthand. It is that relationship that ensures the quality and uniqueness of Boo Yah. “We are never going to produce 10 of the same coat unless it’s a solid black. We want to keep fabrics rotating and new,” Spike said, and she is

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Megan Brown

the one that ensures that happens with each specialty order she places while juggling being a full time mom. Megan, who manages the Historic Preservation Fund grant program for the National Park Service, loves design as well. “I have an architecture degree and love the design aspect as I don’t get to use it much in my profession anymore. But Spike is the one literally setting trends coming out with new styles. I follow her lead,” Megan asserted. “I love to push the limits and make the hunt seat fun without breaking tradition. In 2002, I wore a light blue hunt coat at the Paint World Show. Coats were black then. I got a bunch of looks and it could have 22 | PREMIER | JUNE 2022

Elizabeth “Spike” Brewer

gone either way. Luckily, it worked out and I won, but I love pushing fashion limits,” Spike laughed. “Patterns and designs can be individual and fun, but the trend of simplicity is the one to keep watching. A hunt shirt collar or coat can be flashy without jewels or any bling. Make sure to check rules for your breed association if you are wanting to push those limits

Both ladies are constantly looking at fabrics, piping, patterns, velvets, and what colors to bring out in the pen. “Last year there was a gold trend going. I’m constantly searching to find fabric and accents that sets new trends,” Spike explained. “Fabric options and quality is what sets us apart,” Megan added. “I watch sports


broadcasters on TV and look at the suit material and fabrics they have on. They have the cutting edge fabrics from the fabric houses and give us ideas.” Boo Yah truly wants to keep hunt clothing interesting! “We truly are following the fabric.” Spike went on to affirm the importance of fit in the overall picture. “While it is fun to be trendy and find amazing designs and fabrics, the one thing to be careful of is the fit. Fit is everything. Make sure it isn’t too short or too long and most importantly that it fits your body. Fit is what makes our customers and Boo Yah stand out in the show pen.” “Hunt coats and shirts need to look good, fit and wear well. We want the perfect fit, and believe we have the best-fitting coat to be found. We continue to use only the best fabrics and that makes all the difference,” Megan said. Both businesswomen are exceedingly thoughtful when it comes to creating show attire. This year, the Boo Yah brand is looking at over 10 successful years

in business and is not looking to slow down. “I love working with our clients. When they love an item we have designed that is the ultimate reward. And I truly love designing. To see the process from start to finish, the progress, and even when something doesn’t work the way we hoped. I am always learning,” Spike shared. Megan on the other hand loves to watch the show pen. “When I hear how much someone loves our brand it is the best feeling. But nothing quite beats looking out in the ring and seeing our coats and shirts on multiple exhibitors. To me that is the feeling of success.” Boo Yah puts an emphasis on fabric that is undeniable – and riders are loving it! Rarely will one experience fabrics as high quality and classically on trend as those found in a Boo Yah Custom Clothing creation. Boo Yah is, quite simply, the hunter under saddle fashion destination. Article written by Stephanie Kallenberger

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HOLLY TAYLOR-STEBBINS | (734) 368-4138 | @HOLLYTAYLORDESIGNS Ad Design by Hiliary Holbrook

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2015 AQHA/APHA STALLION Sire: No Doubt Im Lazy Dam: Radical Bonanza

World Champion & World Champion Sire

2022 STUD FEE: $1500 Standing in Collinsville, TX

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on m i h w o l Fol

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OHIO PAINT HORSE CLUB 2022 SHOW DATES

Furry Frenzy (APHA & All Breed Open Show)

March 5 - 6

Great 8 Zone-O-Rama

May 6 - 8

Buckeye Extravaganza

May 14 - 15

Garwood Arena | Columbiana, Ohio A Furry No Bling Show (Show equipment/clothes optional) Open $$ Classes Judges: Chris Ann Stine, Chris Arnold

C Bar C Arena | Cloverdale, Indiana A Midwest Connection Series Show Judges: Lori Gordon (NSBA), Randy Wilson (NSBA), Bruce Army, Jill Paxton, Pam Scott, Glenn Wells Fulton Cty Fairgrounds | Wauseon, Ohio

Judges: Amy Watkins (NSBA), Sally Puzacke, Danielle Burns, Shannon Walker

Border Bash

July 30 - 31

Fulton Cty Fairgrounds | Wauseon, Ohio A Midwest Connection Series Show Judges: John Boxell (NSBA), Mike Carter, Gayle Lampinen, Charlene Carter

Hoosier Buckeye Palooza

Aug 20 - 21

Amateur Club Show

Aug 27 - 28

Fulton Cty Fairgrounds | Wauseon, Ohio A Midwest Connection Series Show Judges: Linda Long (NSBA), Susan Stafford, Tom Robertson, Ann Jones Madison Cty Fairgrounds | London, Ohio Judges Sat: Daren Wright, Linda Long Judges Sun: Tim Abler, TBD

ohiophc@gmail.com 86 | PREMIER | JUNE 2022

www.ophc.org


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It’s Back for 2022!

a 4 show circuit series

THE GREAT 8

MIDWEST CONNECTION

MAY 6-8

GREAT 8 ZONE-O-RAMA (6 judges) C BAR C ARENA | CLOVERDALE, IN

MAY 27-28

Nearly $22,000 in Prizes in 2022!! 3 Series All Around Saddles (Youth, Am, Open) 17 Division All Around Scooters

GREAT LAKES BREAKOUT POR (4 judges)

INGHAM COUNTY FAIRGROUNDS | MASON, MI

(29th-30th youth/amateur POR does not count toward Midwest Connection)

JULY 30-31

BORDER BASH POR (4 judges)

FULTON COUNTY FAIRGROUNDS | WAUSEON, OH

AUGUST 20-21

HOOSIER BUCKEYE PALOOZA POR (4 judges) FULTON COUNTY FAIRGROUNDS | WAUSEON, OH

17 Division Res. All Around Prizes A New Grand Champion Halter Award Series Class Circuit Awards * must show at 3 of the 4 events to qualify. *must hold memberships in MI/OH/IN & Zone 8 to qualify. follow us on Facebook for updates

Zone 8 Website: www.zone8apha.weebly.com • Zone 8 Email: zone8apha@gmail.com

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Spots or no spots. We’ve got you covered. Pinto Horse, Miniature, Pony, YA, AM, Walk/Trot-Jog Solid Registry Horse, AM Pinto & Solid NSBA classes All-Breed Leadline Class All-Breed Open Classes NEW EquiScribe Show Entry Program NOSHA Partner NEW

2022 SHOW DATES

May 14-15, Jefferson, WI September 10-11, Oshkosh, WI August 19-22, Winona, MN Jubilee Show (hosted with MNPtHA & Min-I-Kota PtHA)

Youth Activities l Royalty Program l Grand Entry l Gem Show Sponsorship Program Elite “Heels Down” All-Around Award Sponsorship Program On-site PtHA registration and memberships available.

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For more information, visit wisconsinpinto.com. Show Managers: Kathy Findley 262.930.5584 Tina Langness 717.760.2496 WisconsinPinto@gmail.com Facebook – Wisconsin Pinto Horse Association Instagram @wisconsinpinto


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