Alright, here I am to lay it out for you. Your own personal bible to budget shopping in the equestrian world. I wish. Unfortunately, I do not have all the answers or the ability to make you look like Georgina Bloomberg on a backyard budget. What I do have though, is a unique set of skills (cue Liam Neeson voice) to help you dress your best while keeping your wallet happy. Here goes nothing:
- Know when to splurge and when to save. For instance, new tall boots or paddock boots that you will wear nearly every day and possibly on multiple horses? Splurge and get good quality products that will hold up to the wear and tear you expect to put them through. Fun t-shirt or a new belt? Those are definitely items you can spend a little less on and even usually find in non-equestrian specific stores, which often makes them cheaper. Which leads to point 2…
- Equestrian stores are not the only place to buy stuff to ride in. I’m sure you all know this, I know this, but I have to often remind myself of it. Some athletic shirts make the best summer shirts (check out more on that here), you can find some fabulous belts for cheap at department stores or stores like TJ Maxx et cetera. This is perfect for picking up #rootd worthy pieces at a discount so you can spend a little extra on some tough breeches or just save up for that next lesson.
- Make sure you are actually getting a good deal. Plenty of retailers will list the “retail” price of an item and then “their” price and you think you’re getting a good deal because you’re paying “their” price which is cheaper than “retail.” If you do a little research though, you often find that everyone is selling at the same price. For instance, Dover gives the list price of these contrast-patch Tailored Sportsman breeches as $224, but then gives their price as $189. If you look on SmartPak, they have the same breeches for $189 as well. The lesson is, do a little research and make sure that the deal you think you are getting is really a deal!
- My go to rule when putting together an insta-worthy #rootd is to pick one “focus” item to be the key piece of your outfit. For example, if you get a really gorgeous and trendy new belt, keep it low key and classic with the breeches and top. If you’ve got a cute and funky graphic tee, let everyone focus on that instead of trying to put together too many statement pieces. The goal is to look put together and cute (for me at least), not like a flashing billboard that just wants to garner as much attention as possible.
- Own it. This is the cheapest but sometimes hardest way to make your look work. You’ve got to embrace whatever it is you are wearing and that is what will make it look amazing, not the brands or what you paid, but how much you own and appreciate what you are wearing. Everyone is different and so is their style, so find yours and embrace it! Even if you haven’t quite found your specific “look” yet, embrace the process! This is supposed to be fun, remember that and rock whatever it is you’ve got on.
Like I said earlier, these are not the end-all be-all tips to making you look perfect every time while spending no money, but they are some things I have learned along the way that I think can apply to everyone. Keep an eye out for future features on fabulous companies, how to hunt down the best deal, and on trend riding looks for less! Comment below to let us know what your favor budget tip is.