Since the whole walk-walk-walk-walk-walk, trot-trot routine is not all that thrilling to document, I figured I'd move onto one of my pet peeves that has reared its (totally unattractive) head while I've been busy streaming the big indoor shows back east.
Oh the horror.
I think my sensitivity might be due to my equestrian upbringing in the land of eventing and dressage, where Shads are worn only at the upper levels and are a reflection of the formality and impeccable turnout that goes hand in hand with competing at that level. But regardless, my preference for Shadbelly style and fit is strongly influenced by that background.
|How I think Shads should look|
|mmm, belt free and streamlined.|
Now, I am the first to admit that there will never (ever) be a reason for me to wear a Shadbelly in either of those disciplines. I am simply not a good enough rider to earn the right to wear one for dressage, and I don't have the balls to get there on the Three Day stage...
So trust me when I say that I am THRILLED there is a (reasonable) chance that at some point I might be able to justify the purchase of (and wearing) a Shadbelly for some sort of Hunter Derby type thing.
I acknowledge a relatively limited understanding of Hunter Land and all of its traditions and nuances, but it seems that while the Shadbelly still carries an air of extra formality - a much, much higher percentage of competitive Hunter riders will have an opportunity to (appropriately) bust out the tails at some point in their career.
Which brings me to my pet peeve - Shadbellies worn with low rides breeches that result in an unsightly peek at not only one's belt, but also one's shirt between the two.
|what the crap.|
I have a personal dislike for all things low rise (especially breeches) but that is mostly due to my total lack of a waist and general abundance of love handles which render low-waist-anything sort of horrific. However, I find Shadbelly Belly unsightly and sloppy looking even on those riders with waify, equitation-perfect figures, so being skinny doesn't really solve the aesthetic issue for me..
My first, not so generous, assumption upon noticing the horror of herds of Junior riders scampering around with crop-top shads that prominently displayed half of their shirts along with some blingy belt - was that this unsightly gap between shad and breeches could be blamed on an irreverence for good turnout and a general misunderstanding of formal attire.
I turned to google to find appropriate examples of this trend and was horrified to learn that even the catalog pictures
for "hunter" shads show them worn with low rise breeches.
So am I to understand that is this a deliberate style???
If so my grandmother is for sure
rolling over in her grave and I suddenly feel very old and sort of want to shake my fist at those darn kids and their fancy horse riding coats....
But seriously, these are catalog
photos... Which, dare I say are less extreme examples of Shadbelly Belly than what I see scampering around at the shows - but still, this is how Shads are marketed to the Hunter crowd? I'm so confused.
|put your g-- d--- belt away|
Any seasoned Hunters out there have an explanation? I have noticed that several of the pros tend to wear their Shadbellies with high rise breeches, and sometimes even with a real vest (gasp, I love that
). But most of the juniors and ammys run around sporting the exposed belt/belly look.
I have a feeling that even is the shirt-gap-belt-showing thing is "correct" its one of those looks that I'll never, ever quite get used to.
Fortunately for me, my whole super-short-waisted thing means I'll never have to worry about this issue personally. Well, that along with the fact that I would need to be showing 3' + before I even worry about this to begin with, but I digress...
What do you guys think? Who has a shad and cares to share?