Adventures in Being Thrifty

Two things about me: I love bright colors, and I hate to pay retail. So that leads (lol, pun) me to my latest experiment, ombre cotton lead ropes. I first fell in lust with dip dyed leads thanks to Etsy and Instagram. I saw them in glorious technicolor about a year ago and thought “Ohhh,…

How I Found True Love on Craigslist

I’ve been incredibly blessed with my horses, and most of them have come to me in unusual ways. Though they are / were all different breeds and backgrounds, each had something in common: they were overlooked because they were 1) skinny 2) untrained 3) badly trained 4) considered “ugly” (ie muddy, ungroomed, bad feet, bad…

33 Things You May or May Not Want to Know . . .

Piaffe Girl got nominated twice yesterday for a Liebster Award, which makes me blush, but also means I’ve got to answer some random and not so random questions. Twenty-two of the questions were asked by my nominators, and eleven are random things that readers might like to know about me. Before I continue, many thanks…

In Defense of the Dutch: Or, What’s Jumping Got to Do With It?

After I made the switch from jumping to dressage, I had the great good fortune to be trained in the SRS and classical German methods by some excellent coaches. As time passed, I began to clinic with other masters, such as Dominique Barbier, and learned an exceptional amount about in-hand work, development of the young…

Roeckl Gloves: Truly Suprema?

I’m a glove addict: I admit it. It used to be part of my seasonal ritual to visit the local tack shop and peruse their latest collection of gloves. Over the years I’ve tried just about everything — Miller’s Good Hands, SSG, Neumann’s, traditional string, and Roeckl to name a few. When I was riding…

“Wither” Thou Goest

It’s been a rough ride: literally. After losing my FEI horse several years ago, and then my favorite mare to colic two years ago, I wasn’t sure I’d ever find the right equine partner again. Although I currently have three horses, the one who shows up in all the Piaffe Girl photos is my eldest…

On fashion and common sense.

Fashion, and whether others notice our sartorial choices, has been a recent point of conversation among my friends and I. I’ve noticed that some people are particularly self-conscious — to the point of anxiety — about their dress, hair, and accessories. They feel they’re being judged on looks at the exclusion of everything else. This…

Ten Things

Working with young and green horses through the decades has taught me a lot, and although I’m certainly thankful for the practical skills I’ve gained, I’m even more grateful for the the life-lessons they’ve unwittingly passed on to me. In a few hours, my oldest baby-greenie turns a whole five years old (!) and as…

The State of the Sport: A Call to Action

It’s been quite a while since my last post (apologies to my readers), but attempting to balance a cross-country move, writing a dissertation, and my horse business got to be a bit much. Things have evened out a bit, and so I’m going to shows and generally being more engaged in the sport. That brings…

Dressage Apologetics — Or the Art of Being Proffy

Many years ago, when I was still a youngster in jods, I came across an article in Horse Illustrated or Practical Horseman about a woman who went to Europe as a working student for a well-known dressage trainer (whose name I can’t recall). At that time in my history, I was blithely packing around the…

Product Review — Derby Boots

Last year I decided to splurge on a new pair of schooling boots; my beloved, eighteen year old Petries weren’t up to snuff any longer. For shows, I have a pair of custom Dehners , and although I’m happy with them, I thought I’d go with something different for daily wear. After some serious tack…