Monday, September 3, 2012

Extreme Makeover: Tack Locker Edition

There's nothing I love more than an Extreme Makeover (if you couldn't tell about the post regarding my garage here.  Or the oh so lovely tack room at our old barn here.)

As I mentioned before, my tack locker at the barn is the barn-makeover equivalent of the middle aged mom out "on the plaza" with a crappy ass perm, bad glasses and baggy clothes with unidentifiable stains attributed to the 4 screaming children she's guiding around NYC while on Thanksgiving break where for some god forsaken reason they all woke up at 4am to get a good spot where they could stare easily at the back of Kathy Lee and Hoda's heads as they drink from giant margarita glasses at 6am on a Tuesday.

That woman will get picked for the instant makeover every time.  Every time.

My tack locker was sorta like that.  Broken bins that don't shut all the way, a total lack of shelves or racks.  An old saddle pad duct taped to the rack to soften the pressure on my saddle's panels, etc, etc. 

It was sad.  And it made me sad.  And I don't like anything horsey related to make me sad.  It was also incredibly frustrating whenever I had to dig out a different pair of brushing boots, or try to excavate a clean pad out from under the mess.

So, much like that plucky mom whisked away from the crowd who gets a quick dye job, a mediocre new dress and a hair cut that she has no possible way to maintain on her own - My little locker got the business end of a power drill and a new lease on life.

Behold the "before" (you've seen this mess before)

And the (gasp) after:

Dad helped install two shelves (one low, one high) that are both half the depth of the locker.  This makes shoving things up high easy, and leaves me room for tall things (like boots!) on the floor.  He also popped in a few shelves on the left side that take advantage of the 3" past the door frame and are perfect for all sorts of bottles and bags of treats.

I came in a few days later and knocked out the big, crappy saddle racks and installed two Easy Up racks from Schneider's.  I also popped in half of the Easy Up swinging pad rack which maybe has changed my life.  I threw four purple bridle hooks on the right side (and no, that still doesn't allow me to store all of P2's bridles at the barn) as well as a bandage rack hung sideways on the door. 

Right now my Upper Shelf has a bin with P2's show sheet, cooler and random jackets for me, along with my tub of tack cleaning supplies and spare treats (very important).

The shelves have all my first aid stuff, bathing stuff and treats-currently-being-used (extremely important).  I left a couple of old hooks in the wall for my spurs and boot pulls.

The new bridle hooks to the right have Prairie's fancy hunter bridle, her daily jumping bridle, and two dressage bridles (with different bits for different days).  The lower shelf houses my clippers, boot jack, and Prairie's boots, while an empty tub, my hoofjack and another bin full of miscellanea are tucked neatly below it.  Finally, my tall boots and grooming box sit on the floor in front of the shelf without fear of crap toppling down onto them. 

My door, which came with a few crappy over the door organizers is much less cluttered and now holds Prairie's nice leather halter (that she's not allowed to wear), my helmet, and all of her polos.  (her pillow wraps won't fit because her legs are the length of a adult giraffe.  Presumably once they are washed, they will go in the empty tub under the shelf.

Also, I still have so much room!  As Prairie's sheets migrate back to the barn for Fall, I definitely have space to store clean laundry and whatever else I decide that I absolutely must acquire (I'll think of something I'm sure)

Now, much like the makeover mom on morning television, my locker beams with pride and looks sharp, clean and ready for business.  It also makes me smile every time I swing the door open.

Unlike the makeover mom - my locker has already proven that well placed hooks and shelves are making it very easy to maintain the new look. 

Sometimes it's the little things in life :)

Of course.. With Pia's arrival comes another full size locker which begs the question - do I segregate stuff based on horse, or purpose?  I could give P1 a locker of her own and P2 a locker of her own, or I could dedicate one locker to "tack only" and use another for random products, sheets, blankets and wraps...


  1. It looks awesome!! What to do with two whole lockers... With two horses, you'll barely have enough space. ;)

    1. I mean, I'm pretty sure I could fill 5 lockers with no problem... BUT moderation in all things... right? (or maybe just all things except for cheese and horses)

      but TWO lockers! I need a strategy...

  2. Just started reading your blog and I LOVE IT! I am a tackaholic too so I can definitely relate... I don't know if you still need to find a hunt coat but Farm House Tack is awesome. I have 3 coats from them now since I knew my size. The most recent purchase I did through email but it was so worth it when I got the brand new coat that was supposed to be close to $500 for just $100! And it shipped out really fast as they knew I was heading to a show the same week.

    Depending on your sizes they might also have tan breeches that could work too if you haven't found any yet. I have bought I think 4 pair from their clearance area now... and the most I paid was $100. I email Erika Conklin when I order but I imagine that you could also call. They are the best and the clearance room is incredible. They are in NC which is why I order over phone/ email unless I am in town visiting family.

    Best of luck at your show! Both of your mares are stunning!

    1. Yay! thanks for finding us. I've never heard of Farm House Tack, but I can guarantee I'm about to waste some time looking at their site :) thanks for the link!

    2. Yeah one of my friends is a reader and showed it to me this weekend, already hooked! Unfortunately they don't have the real deals on the website but I can guarantee they have some awesome stuff! I made out like a bandit with the coats I have gotten. Always happy to share good shopping finds! :)

  3. Wow!! I'm impressed. That's awesome!! I can be OCD about organizing things so I would probably separate their things into their own lockers. The main reason I would choose that route is because if you have someone taking care of your horses (such as blanketing them, riding them, grooming them) while you're gone that makes it easier for them to use the correct things on the right horse without you having to label every item. It would suck if someone were riding your horse while you were gone and used ill fitting tack (because it belonged to the other P) or the wrong blanket or brushes and passed rain rot or something to the other (if they happened to get that or whatever). I don't know, maybe I'm overly paranoid, but that's what I would do. :D I'm a stickler to each horse having their own things and only using their own things.


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