Every time I am at a horse show on my own, I like to find a fun and mindless television show to watch at night to unwind. In 2022 it was True Blood that kept me thoroughly entertained on the road, and last year it was mostly Grey’s Anatomy.  I finished all 19 seasons in one year, which should give you an idea of how much alone time I have at night when traveling. This year I am back in Thermal for just a handful of weeks, which of course as you know I swore I wouldn’t do, and I chose Emily in Paris as my night time escape.  But I will come back to this in a minute, first some explaining. 

Life threw me some pretty harsh years in a row, and I felt myself becoming more and more negative. Yeah I am sure you felt it too.  I definitely did not do a good job of hiding it.  But last summer I hit the reset button. I was sick and tired of hearing myself complain about, well, pretty much everything, and I knew it was time to make a change. My love affair with the equestrian retail world was on the rocks, and I was seriously contemplating a break up. I wasn’t sure how else I could spend my time, not to mention generate income, but I was determined to take some chances and explore my options.

I finally enrolled myself in this Equus Coaching program I had been eyeing for over a year. Without getting into too much detail, an Equus Coach is an alternative to a traditional therapist or life coach, utilizing a horse in your session to act as a mirror so that you can more clearly see your habits, reactions, or any other dysfunctional patterns that may plague you in your daily life and relationships. Having been in and out of therapy most of my younger like, I had already explored and uncovered the root of my dysfunctional patterns. But I kept finding myself stuck, always vacillating in my decisions. And I never really felt happy in my life or with myself.  I didn’t want to go back into therapy and dredge up past wounds that I had already accepted and come to terms with.  What I needed was to move forward, and that’s what Equus Coaching was about for me, getting unstuck.

I have been around horses almost my whole life, so when I got to my first onsite training this past fall, I thought, yeah I got this. Well the first lesson these horses would teach me is, that, in fact, no, I do not got this.  I always knew how incredible horses were, but after 5 days of being coached with them, I discovered they are downright magical.  I spent so many years in therapy and copious amounts of money trying to fix myself, and within a few sessions with a trained Equus coach and a horse I was able to pinpoint exactly what it was that I wanted, and exactly what is was that I didn’t want. 

It came down to two very simple things. I wanted to work to live, not live to work. And I wanted to be around horses as much as humanly possible. And I knew to do those things, that I would have to make up with the equestrian retail world, and breathe a little life back into LA Saddlery. But I had to do it in a way that would be balanced, and that wouldn’t drive me back into the rabbit hole of negativity. 

My first order of business was to clean up my showroom and make it into a little posh boutique that people could come shop during special events. Done and done.

Second I wanted to keep focused on my best selling exclusive brand Iago, as well as to add on a few non-horse related fashion brands, that were fun, flirty, and price point friendly.  I have peppered this blog with some of the new items for you to peruse while I ramble!


Customers have literally wanted to buy clothing off of my back at the shows, so it made sense to start with brands that I already wear. A quick trip to the fashion district in Los Angeles, and I had procured two new super stylish brands to add to my collection. Finally I had to give my trailer a little make-over and commit to do at least a few weeks in the desert at the start of 2024. And here we are! 


So how am I doing so far in the desert?  Well considering I was moved to the end of vendor row, nearly electrocuted myself on my first day when my converter blew in my trailer, and then broke my favorite skinny mirror in the process, I am actually feeling quite relaxed and positively hopeful about my future.  Customers new and old have found me, and have quickly reminded me, that despite all the new vendors and brands popping up at the shows, LA Saddlery still brings the best in sass and class every time. 


I walked around the showgrounds and realized how much the industry has changed, including this horse show. When I walked back to my set up, with it’s simple, clean and effective look, full of original items, beautiful colors, and treasures to peruse in every corner, l also realized that LA Saddlery has not changed one bit since I first set out in this business 16 years ago.  I used to get all stressed out looking at other store’s/brands social media, thinking I had to keep evolving, especially when so many of them were just carbon copies of what I had already done years ago.  But now I don’t feel that same angst. Mostly because I can see through the façade of social media and branding. 

Most of these new brands and stores, are for lack of a better word, trash disguised as gold.  I told one of my customers the other day that I would probably never be truly successful in this business because I have too many principals.  It’s still important to me where and how something is made. And all of my brands are built to last both in function and in style through the years.  I loathe fast fashion and false branding, making a cheap knock off and then parading it around like it’s the next big “it” thing to wear.


So it’s rather ironic that I chose to binge watch a show that literally is about social branding and how much influence one silly girl can have on so many people. But I definitely relate to the content, at least from her professional life, if you can even say that what she does is a profession. I often feel like my job is frivolous in the grand scheme of the universe. But I don’t identify with the Emily character, I am more aligned with the middle aged French woman who lives and breathes style, but not over substance, who believes in originality over mass branded copies, and who understands that a luxury item should be a whole body experience of the senses, not a fast food item.


I am not going to lie, I love the often outrageous fashion choices by Emily and the rest of the silly ensembled cast, and it emboldens me to embrace my own sometimes off the beaten path outfits, especially when I am working at the horse show.  But I loathe the fact that her entire life is lived and recorded on Social Media, and that her whole job is to essentially manipulate the public to liking and buying things. I struggle with using social media for LA Saddlery because I never want to portray a brand or item in a false or over exaggerated manner. It’s also why I have stayed away from influencers or what we used to call “brand Ambassadors” because in reality they are not authentic believers in any one product. They are selling themselves, not the product, and have zero brand loyalty.


I love content that is more authentic, more in tune with my store and my philosophy on horses, fashion, and everything in between.  Because that is what always keeps me coming back to this magically fucked up world, the horses and the people that love them as much as I do! 

I hope you all enjoy the new collections I have brought to LA Saddlery!


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