Dear Hobby Horse,
I am sometimes concerned that I will see someone with the same Hobby Horse outfit on when I go show. How can I avoid seeing my twin in the show ring?
Thanks for your nice note. I appreciate what you're talking about with people concerned that they will look like twins in the show ring. This has always been an issue of concern for me, but I have found two things over time:
1. I have never seen the same Hobby Horse fashion item (say a vest or a jacket) on two people in the ring at the same time. We have done ten annual catalogs now, and each one has had about 50 different garments. We usually make a garment for one season only, so this means that there are more than 500 different Hobby Horse fashion pieces floating around out there. We sure don't want to wear the same dress to the prom, but I still have never seen it happen with Hobby Horse clothes.
2. On the other hand, people sure seem to want to look like twins in the show ring! Why else would they all wear black chaps and a black hat, so that they are as black and boring as at least half of the class? The show ring is a place where tradition can become dull: you will look like everyone else if you cover half of your body in black and don't take pains to do something very exciting between your neck and your navel. Try something a little different- at least a light colored hat- and plan a wardrobe instead of buying an outfit so that you have interesting pieces to mix and match that create many different looks for you. And next time you think it's bad to look like anyone else in the ring, glance at a hunt seat class- it looks like twin city!
I make lots of different clothes and suggest many different combinations in our catalogs, but if you're too afraid to show off, I cannot force you to look wonderful by making you try something interesting! Yep, I get frustrated about this myself, but when I show, I wear all Hobby Horse clothes, and I don't ever look like anyone else in the ring because I use accessories to make any outfit a mirror of my own somewhat flamboyant personality. Clothes are our second skin, so don't hide in the corner if you want the judge to think you're worthy of winning.
Thanks again, and good luck!