Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Breech Bitch

Ask anyone who knows me (well, maybe not my mom, but most other people) and they'll confirm that I am the queen of cool breeches. I am a fan of the unordinary. Part of it is likely rooted in my contempt with the droning simplicity of hunter ring fashion (the switch from polo shirts to sun shirts over the past few years has revived me), but then there's also the fact that I like to have fun.

My collection has grown from the two I had at the start of this blog to 11 pairs total. I very much used to be a jeans and rubber boots kinda gal, but times change. So, in ascending order of preference, here are all my coolio pants.

11. FixDesign Cotton Riding Breeches
Style: Euroseat
Fit: Runs small
Material: 67% rayon, 26.5% nylon, 6.5% spandex
Use: Rare

FixDesign is an Italy high fashion company that happens to have a line of riding clothing as well. It's like Gucci but more appropriately priced. I found out about them through fellow blogger Silvia of Equestrian Trend, and I was in love with these pants when I first laid eyes on them. Aesthetically, they're everything I like, but realistically they are lacking. First, they run quite small from the American perspective, so go up 1 or 2 sizes if you order these. Second, they are geared more towards fashion than function. The material is on the thinner side, and the knee patches are a super thin suede. On the plus side, the zip pocket is a nice feature, and it has back pockets (which I do use). Overall, I wouldn't purchase this model again, but they have since adjusted their design and added some new colors.

10. Harry's Horse Rimini Breeches
Style: Euroseat
Fit: Runs large
Material: 63% polyester, 32% viscone, 5% elastan
Use: Moderate

I was on the prowl for a pair of breeches that had the Animo look without the Animo price, and that's how I came across Harry's Horse. They're pretty much a makes everything kind of brand. While the Rimini's ended up being obnoxiously large at the beginning, a couple very warm trips through the dryer and few months of working out got the fit to be just right. They have a super cute four button detail on the front zipper as well as stars on the back pockets. The front pockets are DEEP, not even kidding, they fit my massive smart phone with room to spare. My only qualm is with the silicone knee patches, which are the exact reason why I bought these things. For my day-to-day riding, they're a bit annoying, but in times where I need more stickability, they come in use. Those times are just on the rare side for me.

9. TuffRider Lowrise Rib Pull-On Riding Breech
Style: Knee Patch
Fit: True to size
Material: 92% polyester, 8% spandex
Use: Moderate

These were my second pair of breeches that were purchased as an alternative to my Equine Coutures. These things really haven't aged since I bought them, and they have seen some abuse. I've used them through various seasons, in both the Dressage and hunter rings, and also for barn chores. They have yet to fail me, except for the one belt loop that ripped. I like the slight contrast of the knee patch, and the fit is great, but, for the life of me, I cannot get over the fact that they are ribbed. Look, my thighs rub together. There is a muscle high up that is used specifically for riding. Normally, this isn't an issue, but when your pants are textured, it leads to some, erm, music? Gets annoying really quick, and I always have to walk slow to avoid having my own theme song. Otherwise, these are fantastic.

8. Annie's Equestrienne Concord Breeches
Style: Knee Patch
Fit: Runs long
Material: 65% cotton, 30% polyester, 5% elastan
Use: Rare

These were definitely an early Christmas present to myself. These have been relegated to more of a winter breech simply due to the color, but they are just fine to wear in every season. They are my second pair of Annie's, and I believe they came right after the company changed their standard cut. These run significantly long on me, like 2"-3" too long, which was a big change from my first pair (further down this list). Another change between the two pairs is the addition of pockets and slightly higher rise on the concords. These breeches do feature the same super soft, stretchy fabric, vegan suede for the patches, and lining on the bottom of the leg. They have enough space that I can layer on the colder days without feeling claustrophobic. As with 99% of Annie's breeches, these were limited edition.

7. Horseware Newmarket Belle Breeches
Style: Euroseat
Fit: Runs slightly small
Material: 95% cotton, 5% lycra
Use: Rare

These were a compromise. I actually wanted the denim pair of these because it had that nice brown patch that I liked, but the universe hates me, and they were sold out before I could snag a pair. I got the pinstripe instead, and it's honestly 1000x better than I hoped. Horseware's clothing line is just the right amount of daring while still having some classic appeal. They have a denim base with a light wash and a slight fade on the thigh plus that integrated calf that I worship. These are a bit hard to get on, but they sit nicely, kinda like a good pair of skinny jeans. The pinstripe is subtle enough that it won't make your legs appear awkwardly long. They mainly give these pants some character. If you're not convinced by my review, let it be known that my trainer is in love with these things, too, and she is picky.

6. Annie's Equestrienne Not So Boring Beige Breeches
Style: Euroseat
Fit: Runs long
Material: 65% cotton, 30% polyester, 5% elastan
Use: Often

These are my third pair of Annie's bought mainly for use at clinics or first impression type rides. They are also a really nice pair of back-up breeches in the event that my regular show breeches get stained, scratched, burned beyond repair, etc. I've found that they are well suited to hot summer weather as they have that yoga pants feel without the yoga pants see-through-ness. They also worked well the one time I used them for an IHSA show and didn't feel like paying $3 to launder one pair of pants. In that case, I did layer with a pair of fleece tights, and they were fine just like the concords. They've graduated to being a staple in my collection. The silicone horse head doesn't have as much of an effect on my riding as the full silicone patch on the Riminis does, so I'm a lot happier with them for that reason.

5. Shires Oakland Side Zip Breeches
Style: Euroseat
Fit: True to size
Material: 67% cotton, 26% nylon, 8% lycra
Use: Rare (only for shows)

It was a long time coming, but dang it these were worth it. I went through fake breeches to leggings to a size too big breeches only to finally end up with these as my permanent show breeches. If you're looking for the classic hunter breech with the side zip, structured fabric, and that weird seam that goes towards the knee patch, these are your breech. Seriously, these are a top alternative to Tailoreds. They are mid rise with a leg that ends right at my ankle. If you're on the shorter side, there's nothing to worry about with these breeches. These are the perfect shape for me, and I love them more every time I put them on (which hasn't been super often lately, and I miss them, but I won't risk stains). I'd never use these as everyday breeches because I prefer a front zip, but these are classic for eq and hunters.

4. Annie's Equestrienne Original Blue Breeches
Style: Full Seat
Fit: True to size
Material: 65% cotton, 30% polyester, 5% elastan
Use: Rare

These breeches are honestly where it all started for me. These were my first pair of "cool" breeches (and also my first pair of full seats which makes no sense considering the fact that I didn't actually start riding Dressage until well over a year later). When I used to be a Pinterest junkie, these were a popular item floating around with equestrians. Miss El also really liked these the first time she saw them. I did a full review of these already which you can view here. To be clear, the breeches I own are the first original blue without the crystals, pockets, or integrated calf. The recently updated style likely has the same higher rise and longer leg that's typically of current Annie's Breeches.



3. Tredstep Symphony No. 4 Nero Breeches
Style: Euroseat
Fit: Runs slightly small
Material: 95% cotton, 5% spandex
Use: Heavy

I can't say enough good things about these breeches. After feeling a bit bitter about letting go of my too big Tredsteps, I finally got something in my size, and these breeches came to be mine. I did a full review of them a while ago which you can read here. They have the integrated calf, and Tredstep's is the best I've come across so far. They hug your body; these breeches are a second skin, but getting that skin on does take an effort. The fabric is thicker and stiffer, but you're paying for something sturdy that's made to last a while. I used these somewhat interchangeably with my TuffRiders when I used to be a barn hand, but I tended to save these for IEA lessons due to the fact that they were more sturdy. I highly recommend the slate blue because it's super easy to match. Be aware that they do fade with abuse.

2. Romfh Scandia Winter Breech DISCONTINUED
Style: Knee Patch
Fit: Runs slightly small
Material: 85% polyester, 15% spandex
Use: Heavy (only in winter)

So I got more or less lucky that I didn't have to use these last winter, but these are great breeches, and it saddens me that Romfh no longer makes them (or any winter breech, what gives?). These were reviewed as part of an item haul that I did a couple winters ago. Let it be known that I get cold very easily, and I am not happy when I am cold. These are basically my "It's under 50 degrees" breech, and the quality makes up for the fact that they sound like a windbreaker when I walk. I have worn these in straight up cold weather, regular rain, freezing rain, snow/sleet, at home and at shows, and they have come through every time. The style is simple, and since I got a tan pair, I do have the option to show in them if need be. I love having toasty thighs.


1. Annie's Equestrienne Retro Rust Breeches
Style: Euroseat
Fit: Runs long
Material: 65% cotton, 30% polyester, 5% elastan
Use: Moderate

Honestly, it shouldn't even be surprising that these are my favorite breeches overall; I freaking designed them. These breeches have the same standard design as the Not So Boring Beige, so I do have to roll up the ankles. Otherwise, they're perfect. Annie's is the bomb. They got the rust coloring just right (not too red, not to orange). As much as I love them, I do try to limit my use simply because I thrive on changing up my look, but dang it's difficult. They're sooo comfortable, just like all my other Annies. I kind of went in blind getting the knee patch since they only had the full seat up on the website, but I'm overjoyed with how they look and feel. I also really like the gray trim on the pockets that matches the knee patch. It's a nice touch. I'm not sure how long Annie's is going to keep producing these, so snag a pair while you can!

3 comments:

  1. omg your breech collection. especially the retro rust <3333

    ReplyDelete
  2. Quite the collection!! I wanted so badly to love Annie's breeches... But alas despite the awesome color they did me zero favors. So sad. Great company tho and easy to work with!

    ReplyDelete

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