Saturday, November 3, 2018

The Unending Tale of White Breeches

One of my unwritten goals this year was to cut way back on unnecessary horse expenditures. Forget the vet and farrier bills--those don't count as I'm never going to apologize for throwing dolla dolla bills in the air in that category.

However, I did spend almost five thousand dollars on tack and gear last year. That's an obscene amount of dolla dolla bills. Of course a lot of that was from the Stubben I bought that didn't work for me which I then sold, and the County that replaced it. The last $1,000 of the County got paid off this year (which still makes me twitch a little as this saddle was more expensive than my horse trailer, never mind the bargain-priced horse himself), so I know that year end number is again going to be higher than I want. But I do feel like I tried to keep a wrap on my spending on everything else.

One thing I couldn't get away from shelling out money on was a new pair of white breeches.

MUCH TO MY FUCKING DISMAY.

much loved old breeches at dopie's second show

My old breeches were a now discontinued pair of Devon Aires with a suede full seat and unobtrusive velcro bottoms. They had no back pockets and deep enough front pockets that I could stuff my phone in for walks without worrying about it falling out. The belt loops were generous enough to fit my C4 belt without being so large that I had to go out and buy an obnoxiously wide belt to fill them. The fabric was soft and light, and I could chuck them in the washer without any special treatment. And I think they cost me all of $60 when I bought them six years ago.

Basically they were the most perfect breeches ever.

Until the crotch split wide open beyond all repair.

it was at this show where my horse was a colossal shit. death of favorite breeches
and naughty AF baby horse did not make for a fun day.

I happen to be in the minority in that I love the look of white breeches. I also really enjoy keeping my grey horse clean so maybe there's just something inherently wrong with me. It turns out that part of the reason I'm not adverse to wearing them is because my original pair were so flattering. They never showed any lumps or bumps, they weren't flaunting my panty line (and bitch please, I am not wearing a thong for a horse show), and I didn't have to worry about anything being see-through. When I started shopping, I realized that not all breeches were created equal forgiving.

I wanted to keep my budget for a new pair around $100. I personally don't think that's an absurd request, although I appeared to be in the minority. I've never paid more than that for a pair of breeches in my life, and I don't plan on ever doing so.

My first go-to was Riding Warehouse. I don't usually shop there because their selection is so limited and their shipping is glacial out to the east coast, but every now and then I find a crazy good deal in their closeouts. I ended up with two pairs of Horze breeches for $40. I had a pair of Horze breeches a million years ago and I remembered them being a thicker fabric, but nice enough.

not horze breeches. 

These ended up being the most unflattering breeches ever. I'm not sure how such thick fabric can create such a lovely display of thigh cellulite, but these did beyond imagining. I tried them on, took one look in the mirror, and sent them right back. The other pair I bought were purple, and while I rode in them one whole time, they didn't sit right on me either and they moved on to Andrea.

After a lot of browsing, I decided I liked the look and reviews of the Equine Couture breeches. The best price I found on them was on Victory Canter, so I placed my order and waited.

And waited some more.

After not getting any confirmation of shipping in over a week, I finally emailed them--because those of you that have used Victory Canter before know that email is the only way to contact them. Which is weird. To their credit, they replied quickly. Only their reply was, "Oh, we don't have 32s in stock anymore. We sent you an email that said that!" They hadn't. "We can send you a 30 or a 34 instead." I'm a 30 in pretty much everything, but I'd read that these run small. At this point, I had a show rapidly approaching and just needed some fucking breeches. I conveyed that urgency and told them to send a pair of 30s.

we had fancy prancing to attend to!

Again, to their credit, they made up for their mistake and overnighted me those bitches post haste with a promise of free returns if they didn't work for me. I tried to shimmy into them and barely got them over my thighs. Forget zipping them. Plus they were way too short. I was deep in the crazy trenches at this point and desperate for breeches, but I wasn't that desperate. I emailed my friendly customer service contact and asked her to facilitate a return. She got me a paid return bag within a couple days and back they went.

Where I then waited some more.

After nearly two weeks of waiting for my return to pop up in my checking account, I emailed again and, to their credit (anyone else getting annoyed at this point?), the money popped right up.

IN THE MEANTIME!

The saga comes to a unsatisfactory close.

these fucking breeches.
flattering from the ground, THE WORST in the saddle.

I finally just went and bought a pair of Pipers. Because SmartPak gets things to me quickly and cheaply. They're the silicone grip full seats with a different fabric from the regular run of the mill Pipers. Which is great because those are heavy and hot and last for shit. I like the fabric on these, and they didn't add to my propensity to sweat like a pig at shows. #klassy They fit great and they don't show my underthings--panty lines or fat lines.

They are, however, the. fucking. worst. to ride in.

there they are, slowly eating my stirrup leathers.

So at first it was just that they chafed wherever the silicone grip lay against my leg. Fine, that's fair, I'm a sweaty person and it was a hot summer. I applied Body Glide the next time out and solved that problem. But they were also sucking my stirrup leathers up under my leg in the saddle. I had to pull the tail of the leathers out of their keepers and let them dangle so they would stop bunching under my thigh as I rode. And they just stuck more than I needed them to. Like when I had to go back to change my stock tie and my ass was essentially glued to the saddle which meant I half slid, half ripped myself free and earned a giant saddle stain down one leg--which then took five thousand soaks and washes to get out.

I was over buying breeches at that point, so I finished out the season in them, but they will be getting stuffed in my trailer as an emergency back up pair next year. I'm not looking forward to going through the process of trying to find the perfect pair again, but these just won't do.

old breeches last ride. they were as done with life as opie was.

Has anyone else experienced such a colossal cluster fuck when it came to buying one single, solitary item of clothing? Or am I the only crazy person that can't make a pair of fancy pants work for shows only?

51 comments:

  1. LOL Well you certainly entertained my Saturday night for me :) That was better than most short stories that I read. Sorry for the loss of your breeches, may they rest in peace. I have a pair of Pipers I just got but not sure which kind they are but my only gripe was they slide down my hips.

    Sorry these turned out craptacular. Can you possibly try to see if they have a 32 in the ones you did want that they sent the 30s in? You have time now to look too!!

    you are crazy for liking white breeches :) But i won't hold it against you!! HA...

    That is amazing you had to hound them to send the return and credit you back. That would annoy me I have never used Victory Canter before.

    Good luck on finding a perfect pair of white breeches before next show season!

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    1. The problem with the Equine Couture was that they were also so, so short. I don't think going up a waist size would help there. But I might end up trying them again in a different model once I get deep into the crazy cycle again.

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  2. Haha remember that weird rabbit hole I went down trying to find you more of those Devon Aires? God the down time at my old job was ridiculous 😂😂 I just don't show recognized #problemsolved #blackbreeches4lyfe

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    1. I KNOW THEY'RE OUT THERE SOMEWHERE!!

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  3. I have never in my 25+ years of riding owned white breeches. Now, moving to eventerland(dressageville adjacent), I'm nervous. There was a reason I never committed...

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    1. I love them! They look so classy and fancy!

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  4. I haaaaate silicone seat breeches. They feel terrible on me and it sucks that they're getting so popular because I see a cute pair of breeches and get excited only to realize they have a silicone seat. I love my dove gray FITS for showing (scored on ebay for cheap!), but I'm also planning on getting a pair of white Ovation Aqua X as a back-up. The Ovation Aqua X's are my FAVORITE. They're a bit over $100 normally but if you get them on sale from Riding Warehouse with one of their 20% off coupons it makes them $100. They're higher waisted though, which I love but some people don't. I love the fabric and the seat is fake suede and they have the sock style leg bottoms.

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    1. The Ovations are on my list for next time to try!

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  5. I HATE breeches that don't fit perfectly!! I've never had a white pair that I loved until I finally got a pair of Horze Melissa breeches (white with blue pockets) that have a little bit of silicone on the full seat - the fabric isn't as thick as many I've tried at the fit is awesome and they are the first white breeches that I LOVE. They are pretty expensive but I scored them for like $45 on sale at a tack shop :)

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    1. Some of the higher end Horze breeches look so nice! If I could find them on super sale I might try them again, but man those cheap ones were AWFUL!

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  6. So last spring I bought a pair of black Fits Free flex on sale at a local tack shop. I loved them so much I ordered the white ones for showing. They fit at the right point on my waist and the seat keeps you in the saddle without pulling in weird ways. They feel like yoga pants. I love that the white have a black seat. My only complaint would be the seat can get a bit warm in hot weather. Not horrible but still. I wear a 30-32 and bought large which are perfect. My other white breeches (I like 2 because my shows are all 2 days) are BR full seat. They fit without bulging and are not see-through.

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    1. I've heard good things about Fits but I'm not a fan on the black seat myself.

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  7. You are making me feel much less crazy for clinging desperately to the pair of white TuffRiders I won in a blogging comment contest on Behind the Bit in 2011. And for giving the suspicious side eye to silicone full seats. Like, I need to be able to MOVE in my saddle contrary to popular belief?

    I know there are things that bother me about the TuffRiders but I try not to think about it too hard because then I'm going to end up going down the same rabbit hole that you did, and at the end of the day, I REFUSE to spend hundreds of dollars on my show outfit, that I only wear for maybe 6 hours a year.

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    1. Ugh, yes, stay away from silicone! I can't justify spending tons of money on breeches I only see dozen or so times a year. I have a lot of other things I can dedicate that extra $50-75 to.

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  8. Right there with you. When I made the switch from endurance to eventing I was dreading having to wear real breeches versus tights. Not sure why you all don’t go to the dark side of tights. They are so comfortable! I ended up trying in a million pairs that either fit my waist or my thighs but not both before getting the Irideon tights version of real breeches.

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    1. Tights usually don't have belt loops though and I feel naked without a belt on everything.

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  9. I keep looking at breeches with the silicon full seat and wondering if I would like them. You've convinced me and now I have no desire to try them them. Thanks for saving me some $$$! I'll stick to my Pikeurs I buy from Europe.

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    1. I know some people don't have a problem with them, but I personally want more freedom in my seat. I have a pair of silicone knee patch breeches and they don't annoy me at all.

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  10. I need to do a post on my white breech collection. It's stupid. They all technically fit, and looked OK when I tried them on, but didn't meet expectations once actually in the saddle, or used for more than 1 show.

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    1. Ooh please do!! I need to cross some more off my list!

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  11. So frustrating! It's almost like we need to stock up on things we love so we NEVER run out. I've had this happen with coats I love. The next season they change the design. So annoying! I do really like my Goode Rider breeches. I have two white pairs. I think they're not expensive? Good luck as your hunt continues!

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  12. There are pipers that don't have the silicone that do come in white. Did you try them?

    I'm personally a fan of the silicone, but I totally get not liking the stick.

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    1. Ah, I see now the fabric weight is not something you like. Disregard!

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    2. Yep, they're just way too hot for a full day of showing and every pair I own pill or the stitching on the seams falls apart. Which is a bummer because they fit me okay and I love all their colors.

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  13. I actually have the Pipers, and like them a lot. Of course not the silicone ones. I can't get behind silicone breeches. They're too sticky!

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  14. I tried on Buckwild breeches at Expo last summer and the white ones were awesome. They actually hide lumps and bumps, are comfortable, are not see-through, and are decently priced ($130, but they frequently have sales). I only didn't get a pair because they were out of the size I needed. The white ones are slightly smaller than the other colors because they use a anti-stain treatment on the fabric. They are silicone, but the maroon pair I have is less annoying than the silicone Pipers, which I've stopped wearing now that I have the Buckwild's.

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    1. The Buckwilds and the Annies never seem to have size 30 in stock when I'm shopping. I mean, without fail because those have both been recommended to me multiple times.

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  15. I'm gonna be that person that says "you get what you pay for" Especially when buying white (potentially see-through!) skin-tight pants, I'm all for spending a little more to make sure the fit is good and the fabric is thick enough. I have a pair of Romfh whites for showing and they are THE BOMB.COM. Fabric is thick enough to not show anything unfortunate without being stiflingly hot, and the pair I have also have a really lovely light grey seat. The fit is awesome. And they repel dirt!? They're magical and I don't care that I spent over $150 for them. It's worth it to feel good in white pants!

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    1. But my most perfect breeches were so cheap, I would like them to be reincarnated into cheap perfection again please!

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  16. I got the horze kiana breeches in white. I LOVE them. Of course they don't make them in white anymore so... you're SOL. I kinda wish I had bought them out of white breeches when they were on sale because I'm gonna screwed if they die an untimely death.

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    1. I hope they live forever so you never have to go through white breeches shopping again!

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  17. I literally ripped the crotch out of THREE of my white full seats this summer! They all fell apart in the same year I mean what are the chances. I too went looking for some but was willing to spend $200 and I could not even find a nice pair under that price!

    I ended up on eBay with some Pikeur Laguanas for $150 CDN shipped and they are the nicest breeches I have ever owned.

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    1. Omg I thought I had it back when my one pair died! I do cruise ebay regularly looking for deals--hopefully I can find something like that as well!

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  18. I'm going to be that annoying person who LOVES silicone seat breeches. They are SO MUCH cooler and less baggy in the crotch than synthetic or suede seat breeches, they don't crawl up, and they hold their shape WAY better. Plus they don't have weird thick seams in annoying places that chafe and rub. The silicone is a tad bit more sticky the first few uses, but eventually it evens out and I don't notice it. My deerskin-seat FITS are actually stickier than my silicone-seats.

    I'd look for a pair of used white performance pro FITS. They're double-layer fabric (I could wear hot pink undies and you'd never know) and magically not hot. New they are pricey but I've seen them for very reasonable $ on ebay.

    Finding good whites that fit sucks, but I'm with you, they look soooo classy!

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    1. UGH NO! I will take my thicker suede seat over a sticky butt any day!

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  19. Finding great breeches are the WORST. As much as I don't want it to be true, Tailored Sportsman fit me the best. Boo.
    I actually liked the Tredstep breeches. They're a little over budget, but I'm pretty sure with some hunting you can find them on sale. Especially now that the seasons are changing.

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  20. Well... Yes and with white breeches. I like the silicone piper breeches in knee patch, but the full seat is just too much for me. My current white pair of full seats are the Piper Hadleys, but they required me to size up TWO SIZES and wear a belt. YMMV. You should be able to get them under $100 tho.

    My FAVORITE pair are my Romfh sarafina full seats, which I am determined to fit back into soon. They are Really expensive tho.

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    1. Are the Hadleys the same material as the regular Pipers, or the same as the silicone knee patch Pipers? I really just need to road trip to SmartPak and try on everything in store.

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    2. totally different fabric than the pipers (regular or silcon) - they actually feel identical to my Romfh sarafinas.

      FWIW I didn't like the knit silicon pipers - the fabric was odd. But I use regular suede full seat pipers for winter/ cold weather schooling and hadleys for EVERYTHING else. I love them. Since SP has such a good return shipping policy, I recommend buying a pair and giving them a whirl.

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  21. WHAT WERE YOU DOING THAT THE CROTCH SPLIT WIDE OPEN!?!!?! WHY DIDN'T YOU WANT TO SHOW WITH BUILT IN AIR CONDITIONER FOR SWAMP ASS?

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    1. I showed in them with a frayed crotch for like a year because I refused to give them up. But once a giant gaping hole appeared I couldn't make them work anymore. I even tried to patch them but the hole was just too great to overcome.

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  22. No help bc my white breeches pill sooo badly and are super unflattering. #banwhitebreeches

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  23. I totally hear you on not wanting to ever spend more than $100 tops for breeches! I'm very fortunate in that Pipers work well for me (non-silicone), but definitely agree that the fabric is thick and hot! I trend toward my Kerrits tights still for the hottest days of summer. Panty lines be damned! I like that the tights don't impede my motion At All.

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    1. BM has a bunch of Kerrits tights that look so nice and comfy, but I cannot live without a belt on.

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  24. I have 1 pair of white breeches I got off a Facebook tack page for that costume contest but I'm not a fan and hoping to make it to the tack store to try shit on this week. I'll go to 1 show in them if I have to but I really don't want to. I school in Kerrits and have no idea what fits me for show breeches as I haven't needed them in years...... wish me luck!

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  25. Unfortunately I don't wear whites so I don't have any advice on brands. I'm also realllyyyyyyy glad that I don't wear whites after reading this, so thanks for that 😂🤣

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