Thursday, 30 December 2010

Making Progress!

I think we have finally figured out how to ride a 10 metre circle! Hattie and I had a short schooling session yesterday and we did end up making some progress. The extra padding I put between the panels helped to keep it balanced so I was able to feel both seat bones better thereby enabling me to sit properly and balanced. With this improvement to my position, Hattie started to work in a nice outline and was more forward which is what I want for dressage!

For our 10 metre circles, I've been struggling with either over shooting them or making them too small or weird shaped but riding yesterday, I kind of gridded up the arena in my brain and got a light bulb moment. If I think of the arena in terms of a grid and imaginary lines going across from one letter to the other, it helps me to plan on where to turn, my bends, etc. We just did 10 metre circles yesterday and was going to practice 20 metre ones today but Hattie decided to go and pull her shoe off in the stable last night!!!

I just called the farrier but he suffers from slipped discs and had another flare up this month. He said he would try to get out sometime next week to shoe Hattie so in the meantime, there will be no hacking for us although we may still get practice our test at a walk in the arena as the footing is super soft in it (as long as it is not frozen!). It's a shame too as we were going to go on a New Years Eve hack to the pub tomorrow and I was going to wear my Hohlwein inspired riding habit!

I also contacted the saddler today to see if they would be able to come out sometime this month to reflock my side saddle as I can't go on forever with grip foam between the panels. I will see if they can reflock my off-side saddle while they are here as well since I'll have to pay the same call out charge for 1 or 10 saddles.

While surfing the internet, I happened across the Christie's auction house website. I LOVE looking at antiques and Sotherby's and Christie's always have the nicest things and sometimes have side saddles!

Two side saddles were sold in one lot in the July 2010 sale, An Owen and an ornate Victorian one made by Oldham of London.

Here is the auction description:

The first with leather seat and panel with decorative stitching, pommels, applied pouch and safety stirrup iron by Latchford of London, and indistinct paper label; the second with buckskin seat, pommels and stirrup, serge and cotton full panel lining, stamped on safety fittings, saddle and stirrup 'BY APPOINTMENT TO HER LATE MAJESTY OWEN & CO. SADDLE & HARNESS MAKERS LONDON' and with paper labels. The Owen saddle: 27 in. (68.5 cm.) long."

The original estimate on this lot of saddles was £400- £600 but in the end, the lot went for £2250!!


  1. That Owen has come up on eBay, too. I don't know if the eBay seller was the Christie's buyer, or just acting as a broker, but clearly someone bought it as an investment.

    Good on ya for figuring out the "connect the dots" aspect of dressage! Some days I find it helps if I don't even consider the whole circle, just half or even quarter arcs. Good circles are very hard!

  2. Ah! Was it the Owen that reportedly belong to the family of Lady Diana? That was was £3500 and did not sell both times it was on Ebay. I was in the market for a saddle both times it came up but couldn't justify spending that sort of cash on a non custom saddle. I liked that saddle too as it would have fit me and Hattie and it had forward placed billets.