Packing, Part II: My Weekly Wears of WEF

Packing, Part II: My Weekly Wears of WEF

Marina is a guest blogger for Hunt Club chronicling her adventures at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival.  She has been riding for twelve years, currently competes in the jumpers, and recently graduated with a degree in English Literature from the University of Pittsburgh.  Follow along as she captures what it's like to be a snowbird at the winter show jumping capital of the world. Joining her is her super-pony mare, Capri, who will be giving her input for many of the blog posts as well.


In addition to being a twelve week showjumping circuit, WEF is also a lifestyle destination. While a majority of my time down here is spent at the barn and horse show, there are plenty of other occasions that I need to dress for.  Just when you thought Capri's tack trunks were bursting at the seams, my suitcases might just take the cake.  Below, I discuss some staple outfits that are necessary for a winter in Wellington.

Some Key Essentials:  I had a revelation a few years ago, when showing in trendy-brand boots and half chaps was becoming an acceptable fashion statement, that I would really never need a pair of tall boots again.  Thus, I now ride in boots and chaps everyday.  I show in them too, and I love it.  They are very functional when doing barn work, and in my opinion, last longer than tall boots.  I also always pack a pouch with my spurs, Capri's information, hairnets, etc, and keep this handy when I'm back and forth from the ring.  The WEF 2017 prize lists where just released, and I have obtained one that will be carried with me everywhere I go for the next three months. 

Schooling Days at the Barn: Our day to day at the barn tends to be relatively casual.  I like to wear either a button down, sweater, or a t-shirt of some sort, be it either flowy or crisp.  Sometimes, I tuck the shirt in all the way around, or just behind the belt buckle.  I typically buy my breeches in neutral colors, such as navy, black, or beige.  These colors are timeless, classic, and match almost everything.  When I don't have my boots and half chaps on, I will mostly be wearing a pair of loafers to complete the look. 

Shown: Pikeur Show Coat, Cavalleria Toscana Show Shirt, B Vertigo Breeches, Hunt Club Logo Socks, Hunt Club Derby Belt.

Shown: Pikeur Show Coat, Cavalleria Toscana Show Shirt, B Vertigo Breeches, Hunt Club Logo Socks, Hunt Club Derby Belt.

Show Days: These are the highlights of the week. I like my outfits to be trendy, but classic.  I don't mind bling if it's not overdone.  I have shirts that have some sparkly collars, and some coats with shiny accents... I like to use the fact that I have a little jumper mare to my advantage when justifying my sparkle usage.  However, I try to only allow bling on one part of my part of my body at a time, meaning if I have same on my jacket or shirt, you won't find it on my belt or anywhere else.  Most of my show clothes are mix and matchable, so I can efficiently create as many outfit combinations as possible across multiple weeks of showing.

Shown: J. Crew shorts, Lilly Pulitzer sweater, Jack Rogers sandals, Ralph Lauren belt.

Weeknight Activities: Weeknight activities can range from trivia at the local sports bar to having a fancier dinner at a sushi restaurant.  Similarly to my choice in colors for breeches, I tend to wear a lot of neutrals outside the barn as well.  The weeknight outfit is casual, but chic. Most of my clothes are interchangeable, and I don't usually wear that many patterns unless I'm going into Palm Beach (this outfit feature is coming up).

Shown: Burberry T-Shirt, True Religion jeans, Kate Spade belt, Forever 21 sandals.

Shown: Burberry T-Shirt, True Religion jeans, Kate Spade belt, Forever 21 sandals.

Saturday Night Classes:  Saturday Night Lights is a highlight of each of the twelve weeks of horse showing at WEF.  These nights hold a featured class which is typically a grand prix, but can also include some fun events like the Great Charity Challenge and Battle of the Sexes.  It can get a bit chilly in the evening, so I tend to pair pants with a nice top, or a long sleeve dress.  The Gallery is an on-site nightclub, so this outfit should serve two functions: be comfortable for watching the class, but chic enough to wear out after.  I always add a pair of heels suitable for walking the course with my trainer before the class and appropriate for dancing after.

 

Questionable Weather Days at the Horse Show: I try my very best not to complain about the weather here, but sometimes, just sometimes, it's a bit unpredictable.  In turn, it's necessary to bring outwear for all seasons: rainwear, down jackets, sweatshirts, sweaters, vests.  Anything you can layer and take off easily is ideal.  As a person who absolutely hates being cold, I have no problem with dedicating an entire bag to coats. 

Shown: BCBG Romper, Kate Spade wristlet, Forever 21 heels.

Shown: BCBG Romper, Kate Spade wristlet, Forever 21 heels.

Sunday Nights: Sunday nights are what close the busy horse show week.  There are two nightclubs in Wellington that are mostly attended by horse show people.  These venues are pretty dressy, so I pack an array of dresses and rompers and fancy attire to wear out.  Matched with a pair of heels and a bag, this outfit should be comfortable but photo-ready.  I love wearing capes, so I will gather as much clothing that pairs fabulously with a cape as humanly possible.  

Mondays in Palm Beach:  Mondays are days that are either spent in bed, or spent trying to be productive and explore life outside of the horse show.  I try to get up early and do some "normal" errands, like grabbing breakfast and going to the supermarket.  In the afternoon and evening my friends and I like to go to Palm Beach for a nice dinner.  If we are there in the afternoon, it is not uncommon to stop at the beach as well, so I like to try and wear an outfit that is cute enough on its own, but also functional enough to hide a swimsuit under it. Wearing a Lilly dress is most likely the only time you will see me in a pattern this vibrant.


All of these outfits for twelve weeks takes up a lot of suitcase and closet space.  Luckily for Capri, she has a relatively strict uniform that does not change on her trips to and from the ring.  However, my outfits vary a bit more, and I would say that the packing struggles of what to bring to Florida are greatest for me.  I consider myself quite the "clothes horse" though, and love digging through my closet and discovering that I brought clothes that I forgot I even owned.  It's always good to be prepared, because you never know what kind of occasions you are going to need to dress for down here!

The Stages of Showing at WEF After Not Showing Since… Last WEF

The Stages of Showing at WEF After Not Showing Since… Last WEF

Pony Packing 101: A List of Tack Essentials that Capri Brings to WEF

Pony Packing 101: A List of Tack Essentials that Capri Brings to WEF