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A Guide to Properly Storing Your Oilskin Coat

A Guide to Properly Storing Your Oilskin Coat

A Guide to Properly Storing Your Oilskin Coat


Oilskin coats are prized for their durability, weather resistance, and classic style. Whether you're an outdoor enthusiast, a rider, or simply appreciate a reliable coat for rainy days, properly storing your oilskin coat is essential to maintain its quality and prolong its lifespan. In this guide, we'll explore the steps to effectively store your oilskin coat, ensuring it remains in top condition for years to come.


1. Clean Your Coat:

Before storing your oilskin coat, it's crucial to ensure that it's clean and free from any dirt, debris, or stains. Follow the manufacturer's cleaning instructions, typically involving a gentle hand wash with cold water and mild soap specifically designed for oilskin garments. Avoid using harsh chemicals or machine washing, as this can damage the oil finish and fabric.


2. Dry Thoroughly:

After cleaning, allow your coat to air dry completely in a well-ventilated area away from direct heat sources such as radiators or sunlight. Hanging the coat on a sturdy hanger will help maintain its shape during drying. Avoid folding or crumpling the coat while it's damp, as this can cause wrinkles and distortions in the fabric.


3. Re-Wax if Necessary:

Over time, the oil finish on your oilskin coat may wear off, compromising its water resistance. If you notice that water no longer beads on the surface of the coat, it's time to re-wax it. Many manufacturers offer wax specifically formulated for oilskin garments. Follow the application instructions carefully, ensuring even coverage across the entire coat. Allow the wax to dry thoroughly before storing.


4. Choose the Right Storage Location:

When it comes to storing your oilskin coat, selecting the appropriate location is key. Choose a cool, dry area away from direct sunlight and moisture, such as a closet or wardrobe. Avoid storing the coat in plastic bags or containers, as this can trap moisture and promote mildew growth. Instead, opt for breathable garment bags or cotton storage sacks to protect the coat while allowing air circulation.


5. Hang Properly:

To prevent wrinkles and maintain the shape of your oilskin coat, always hang it on a sturdy, padded hanger. Avoid wire hangers, as they can cause creases and distortions in the fabric over time. Button or zip up the coat to ensure it hangs properly and retains its silhouette. If possible, leave some space between coats to allow for air circulation.

6. Check Periodically:


Even when stored properly, it's a good idea to periodically check on your oilskin coat to ensure it remains in good condition. Look for any signs of mold, mildew, or insect damage, and address any issues promptly. If necessary, gently brush off any surface dirt or dust with a soft brush or cloth.

 

Properly storing your oilskin coat is essential to preserving its quality and longevity. By following these simple steps, you can ensure that your coat remains in top condition, ready to protect you from the elements whenever you need it. With a little care and attention, your oilskin coat will continue to serve you well for years to come.

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Beaver vs Rabbit Fur

Beaver vs Rabbit Fur

Choosing the Perfect Hat: Beaver Felt vs. Rabbit Fur Felt Hats - Aitken's Saddlery Guide


Welcome to Aitken's Saddlery, your premier destination for equestrian gear and fashion accessories. As you embark on your quest for the perfect hat, we're here to provide valuable insights to aid in your decision-making process. In this guide, we'll explore the timeless debate between two exceptional materials: beaver felt and rabbit fur felt hats.


Why Choose Beaver Felt Hats?


Beaver felt hats are synonymous with durability and practicality. Crafted from the dense and fine fur of the beaver, these hats offer unparalleled resilience, making them ideal companions for outdoor enthusiasts and adventurers. Here's why you might consider choosing a beaver felt hat:


1. Durability: Beaver felt hats are renowned for their ability to withstand the elements. Whether you're trekking through rugged terrain or braving the elements on horseback, these hats are built to last.


2. Water Resistance: Thanks to the natural oils present in beaver fur, beaver felt hats boast excellent water resistance. You can confidently wear your hat in inclement weather without worrying about it losing its shape or integrity.


3. Timeless Style: With their classic silhouette and rugged elegance, beaver felt hats exude timeless style. Whether you're dressed for a formal occasion or a casual outing, a beaver felt hat adds a touch of sophistication to any ensemble.


Why Opt for Rabbit Fur Felt Hats?


Rabbit fur felt hats offer a luxurious alternative with their soft texture and lightweight feel. Crafted from the fine fibers of rabbit fur, these hats prioritize comfort without compromising on style. Here are some reasons to consider choosing a rabbit fur felt hat:


1. Luxurious Comfort: Rabbit fur felt hats are prized for their plushness and supple texture. They are incredibly comfortable to wear for extended periods, making them ideal for everyday use.


2. Versatility: Whether you're running errands in the city or attending a social gathering, a rabbit fur felt hat adds a touch of elegance to any outfit. These hats are versatile enough to complement a wide range of styles and occasions.


3. Affordability: Compared to beaver felt hats, rabbit fur felt hats are often more affordable without sacrificing quality. You can enjoy the luxury of fur felt without breaking the bank.


Choosing Your Perfect Hat at Aitken's Saddlery


At Aitken's Saddlery, we understand the importance of finding the perfect hat to suit your style and needs. Whether you're drawn to the rugged durability of beaver felt or the luxurious comfort of rabbit fur felt, we have an extensive selection of hats to choose from.


Visit us today and let our knowledgeable staff assist you in finding the hat that's just right for you. With our commitment to quality and customer satisfaction, you can trust Aitken's Saddlery to provide you with a hat that will not only elevate your look but also stand the test of time.Welcome to Aitken's Saddlery, your premier destination for equestrian gear and fashion accessories. As you embark on your quest for the perfect hat, we're here to provide valuable insights to aid in your decision-making process. In this guide, we'll explore the timeless debate between two exceptional materials: beaver felt and rabbit fur felt hats.


 

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Shaped Girths vs. Straight Girths

Shaped Girths vs. Straight Girths

The Curves of Comfort: Shaped Girths vs. Straight Girths


When it comes to horse riding, every detail counts. From the saddle to the reins, riders meticulously choose their gear to ensure the utmost comfort and safety for both themselves and their equine partners. One crucial piece of equipment often debated is the girth. Traditionally, riders have used straight girths, but shaped girths have gained popularity in recent years. In this blog, we'll explore the pros and cons of both shaped and straight girths to help riders make an informed decision.


Straight Girths:


Pros:


1. Versatility: Straight girths are the classic choice and are readily available in various materials, lengths, and styles to suit different needs and preferences.

2. Stability: Some riders argue that straight girths offer better stability, especially for horses with well-defined girth grooves.

3. Ease of Use: Straight girths are straightforward to use and adjust, making them ideal for riders who prefer simplicity in their tack.


Cons:


1. Pressure Points: One common issue with straight girths is the potential for pressure points, especially in horses with sensitive skin or those prone to chafing.

2. Limited Conformation Adaptation: Straight girths may not conform well to the horse's body shape, leading to discomfort or restriction of movement, particularly for horses with more prominent shoulders or bellies.


Shaped Girths:


Pros:


1. Enhanced Comfort: Shaped girths are designed to follow the natural contours of the horse's body, reducing the likelihood of pressure points and enhancing overall comfort.

2. Improved Stability: Many riders find that shaped girths provide better stability by distributing pressure more evenly along the horse's barrel, which can contribute to a more secure fit.

3. Conformation Adaptation: Shaped girths often offer a better fit for horses with unique conformational features, such as high withers or a broader barrel.


Cons:


1. Limited Availability: Compared to straight girths, shaped girths may be less widely available, limiting options for riders who prefer this style.

2. Adjustment Challenges: Some riders find shaped girths slightly more challenging to adjust due to their specific design, requiring careful attention to ensure proper fit and alignment.

3. Cost: Shaped girths may come with a higher price tag compared to traditional straight girths, which could be a deterrent for budget-conscious riders.

 

Choosing between a shaped girth and a straight girth ultimately boils down to personal preference, the horse's conformation, and specific riding needs. While straight girths offer versatility and simplicity, shaped girths provide enhanced comfort and stability, particularly for horses with unique conformational challenges. Riders should carefully consider the pros and cons of each option and experiment to find the best fit for themselves and their equine partners. After all, a comfortable horse makes for a happy ride.

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Mastering the Fit of Your Show Coat

Mastering the Fit of Your Show Coat

Unlocking the Winning Look: Mastering the Fit of Your Show Coat

As show season arrives, the anticipation builds for riders gearing up for the start of the show season—a time filled with excitement and perhaps a flutter of nerves for some. At Aitken's Saddlery, we understand the thrill of embarking on a new season, and we're here to support you every step of the way.


A well-fitted show jacket can make all the difference in your presentation, enhancing your appearance and boosting your confidence as you enter the ring. Here are some key tips for checking the fit of your coat or finding a new one that complements your physique:

  1. 1.Try on the coat with your show shirt, breeches, and any undergarments you typically wear during competitions. These layers can impact how the coat drapes on your body.


  2. 2. Start by assessing the fit around the shoulders. The shoulder seams should align with the edges of your shoulders for a polished look.


  3. 3. Next, focus on the torso fit. Ensure the fabric lies smoothly across your back, with lapels resting flat on your chest. Closed buttons should not cause any puckering, and the waistline of the coat should sit naturally at your waist.


  4. 4.Take a seat in the saddle to check how the coat falls. Make sure the hem doesn't cover your cantle or interfere with your seat.


  5. 5.Test the mobility of the coat by putting your arms in riding position. The sleeves should end at your wrist bones with your arms bent as if holding reins, allowing for unrestricted movement.

Finding the perfect fit off the rack can be challenging, but don't hesitate to consult with a tailor for alterations if needed. A skilled tailor can make adjustments to ensure your coat flatters your figure and enhances your overall look.


As you prepare to make your debut in the show ring, remember to have fun and embrace the experience. We wish you the best of luck for a successful and enjoyable season ahead!

Do you have a winning show look? Share your photos with us on Instagram and Facebook by tagging @aitkenssaddlery! We can't wait to see you shine.

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Decoding the 600 Denier vs. 1200 Denier Mystery

Decoding the 600 Denier vs. 1200 Denier Mystery

Horse Rugs: Decoding the 600 Denier vs. 1200 Denier Mystery

In the world of equine care, choosing the right gear for your beloved horse is crucial. Aitken's Saddlery understands the importance of providing top-notch products for both horse and rider. One key aspect of horse care is selecting the right rugs, and among the various options available, the denier count plays a significant role. In this blog post, we'll delve into the differences between 600 denier rainsheet rugs and 1200 denier ones, helping you make an informed decision for your equine companion.


Understanding Denier:


Before we delve into the specifics, let's briefly understand what "denier" means in the context of horse rugs. Denier is a unit of measurement used to determine the thickness or density of fibers in a fabric. In simpler terms, it indicates the strength and durability of the material. The higher the denier, the stronger and more robust the fabric.


600 Denier Rainsheet Rugs:


600 denier rainsheet rugs are a popular choice for horse owners looking for a lightweight and breathable option. These rugs are ideal for milder weather conditions, offering protection against light rain and wind. The lower denier count makes them more flexible and comfortable for the horse, allowing for ease of movement. However, it's important to note that 600 denier rugs may not be as suitable for harsher conditions or more active horses.


Key Features:


1. Lightweight and breathable.

2. Suitable for milder weather conditions.

3. Offers protection against light rain and wind.

4. More flexible for ease of movement.


1200 Denier Rainsheet Rugs:


On the other end of the spectrum, 1200 denier rainsheet rugs are designed for durability and strength. These rugs provide excellent protection against harsh weather elements, making them suitable for colder climates, heavy rain, and rugged outdoor environments. The higher denier count adds extra toughness to the fabric, making it more resistant to wear and tear. This makes 1200 denier rugs an excellent choice for active horses and those exposed to rough conditions.


Key Features:


1. Durable and robust construction.

2. Ideal for harsh weather conditions and rugged environments.

3. Offers superior protection against heavy rain and wind.

4. Suitable for active horses.


Choosing the Right Option for Your Horse:


Ultimately, the choice between a 600 denier rainsheet rug and a 1200 denier one depends on your horse's specific needs and the prevailing weather conditions. For mild climates and less active horses, a 600 denier rug might be the perfect fit. On the other hand, if your horse faces more challenging conditions or is highly active, a 1200 denier rug provides the necessary durability and protection.


Aitken's Saddlery understands the diverse needs of horse owners, offering a range of quality products to cater to different preferences. When selecting a rainsheet rug, consider the denier count alongside other features to ensure your horse receives the best care possible. Whether it's a 600 denier or a 1200 denier rug, Aitken's Saddlery is committed to providing top-tier equestrian gear for you and your equine companion.

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When to Replace Girth Points

When to Replace Girth Points

When to Replace Girth Points with Aitken's Saddlery 

For passionate equestrians, the bond between rider and horse is something truly special. Ensuring the comfort and safety of both rider and horse is paramount, and one crucial aspect of this is maintaining the integrity of your riding equipment. Girth points, the straps that secure the girth to the saddle, play a pivotal role in this equation. In this blog post, we'll explore when it's time to consider replacing your girth points and how Aitken's Saddlery can provide a reliable and efficient solution.


Understanding Girth Points:


Girth points are subjected to significant stress during each ride, bearing the weight and movement of the rider. Over time, the wear and tear on these crucial components can compromise their strength and reliability. Regular inspections are vital to catch any signs of damage before they escalate into safety concerns.


When to Replace Girth Points:


Visible Wear and Tear: Inspect your girth points regularly for visible signs of wear, such as fraying, cracking, or stretching. If you notice any of these issues, it's a clear indicator that your girth points may be reaching the end of their functional life.


Loss of Elasticity: Girth points typically have some elasticity to accommodate the horse's movements. If you find that the elasticity is diminishing or if the points have become stiff and inflexible, it's time to consider replacement.


Inconsistencies in Length: Girth points should be of equal length to ensure even distribution of pressure. If you notice any discrepancies, it could lead to uneven pressure on the girth, affecting the horse's comfort and potentially causing discomfort or injury.


Regular Maintenance Intervals: Even if there are no visible issues, it's advisable to replace girth points at regular intervals as a preventive measure. Aitken's Saddlery recommends considering replacement every 12-18 months, depending on usage.


Why Choose Aitken's Saddlery:


Aitken's Saddlery is a trusted name in equestrian equipment, renowned for its commitment to quality and rider satisfaction. When it comes to girth point replacement, here's why choosing Aitken's Saddlery is a wise decision:


1. Expert Craftsmanship: With years of experience in the industry, Aitken's Saddlery boasts a team of skilled craftsmen dedicated to delivering top-notch products and services.


2. Efficient Turnaround: Aitken's Saddlery understands the urgency of getting back in the saddle. With a 3-7 day turnaround for girth point replacement, riders can enjoy minimal downtime.


3. Transparent Pricing: Aitken's Saddlery offers girth point replacement at a competitive rate of $220. This transparency ensures riders know exactly what to expect, both in terms of service quality and cost.


Maintaining the longevity and safety of your riding equipment is a responsibility every equestrian should prioritize. Regular inspections and timely replacement of girth points are crucial steps in ensuring a secure and comfortable riding experience. With Aitken's Saddlery, riders can trust in the expertise and efficiency of a dedicated team, providing a reliable solution to keep the bond between horse and rider strong.

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Outfitting a Horse Float: Essentials for Safe and Comfortable Travel

Outfitting a Horse Float: Essentials for Safe and Comfortable Travel

Outfitting a Horse Float: Essentials for Safe and Comfortable Travel

Embarking on new adventures with your horse is an exciting journey, especially when you've just acquired your own horse float. To ensure your horse's safety and comfort, it's essential to have the right equipment on board. If your float isn't already equipped, here's a comprehensive list to help you get started.


1. It’s a Tie: Breakaway Float Ties


Consider using breakaway ties or secure a regular tie to your float's wall with a loop of twine.  Ties should have the ability to release in case your horse slips and falls during transport. Opt for durable materials like nylon and Velcro for added security.

6. Trouble in Paradise: Roadside Breakdown Supplies


Be prepared for unexpected roadside breakdowns with a fire extinguisher designed for electrical fires, suitable jack for changing trailer tires, and road safety triangles for enhanced visibility in case of emergencies.


7. Protecting Your Investment: Float & Tire Covers


Ensure your float is well-maintained by using tire chocks when parked and covering the spare tire to shield it from sun and harsh weather. Invest in a hitch cover to prevent water damage to the electrical system and consider a trailer cover for long-term storage to protect your valuable investment.


Is your horse float fully stocked and ready for travel? Share your preparation journey with us on Instagram by tagging @aitkens_saddlery and Facebook by tagging @aitkenssaddlerySafe travels and happy riding!

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A Comprehensive Guide to Fly and Mosquito Control

A Comprehensive Guide to Fly and Mosquito Control

Defending Your Equine Companions: A Comprehensive Guide to Fly and Mosquito Control

As much as horses enjoy the soothing touch of a well-scratched face, the relentless annoyance of buzzing insects can be a real bother. At Aitken's Saddlery, we understand the importance of ensuring your equine friends are comfortable and protected during insect season. In this blog, we'll explore various natural, environmental, and chemical strategies to keep flies and mosquitoes at bay.

Natural Products for Defense


  1. Fly Masks and Sheets:Commercial fly masks act as a protective barrier, keeping annoying insects at a distance. Additionally, fly sheets prevent direct contact with a horse's body while allowing air circulation. Equipping your horse with mesh leg boots is especially beneficial for those sensitive to fly irritation on their legs.

Combining these strategies will create a comprehensive defense against pesky insects on your horse property. At Aitken's Saddlery, we prioritize the comfort and well-being of your equine companions. Implement these tactics to enjoy insect-free seasons and keep your horses content.

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Battling Rain Scald in Horses: A Guide to Treatment and Prevention

Battling Rain Scald in Horses: A Guide to Treatment and Prevention

Battling Rain Scald in Horses: A Guide to Treatment and Prevention

After a particularly wet summer, many horse owners may find their equine companions grappling with the common skin condition known as Rain Scald or Mycotic Dermatitis. In this blog, we'll explore what rain scald is, its causes, and most importantly, how to effectively treat and prevent it.


Understanding Rain Scald:


Rain scald is a bacterial skin infection caused by Dermaopilis Congolensis, thriving in moist conditions. Typically affecting the back, rump, lower limbs, and neck areas, rain scald can range from a few scabs to severe cases with matted hair, warm skin, and painful, raw areas.


Treatment:


Gentle Cleansing:


  1. Application of Topical Ointments:


    • Apply an anti-fungal ointment like Dr Show GG Healer or a soothing cream such as White Healer to promote healing.
    • These products aid in softening scabs, which can then be gradually removed over the next few days.

  2. Keep the Horse Dry:

    • Maintain a dry environment during treatment to facilitate healing and prevent additional moisture on the affected area.
    • Shelter your horse from rain, and consider using a weather-proof rug for added protection.

    • Prevention:
    • Stabling and Shelter:
    • Where possible, keep your horse stabled during wet weather to minimize exposure to prolonged moisture.
    • Providing a well-ventilated shelter or using waterproof rugs can offer protection against rain.

    • Regular Grooming:
    • Implement a regular grooming routine to keep the horse's coat clean and free from excess moisture.
    • Inspect the skin for any signs of rain scald, especially in vulnerable areas like the back and rump.
    • Consultation with a Vet:
    • In cases of uncertainty or severe rain scald, consult with a veterinarian for professional advice.
    • Antibiotics may be necessary in extreme cases, and a vet can provide tailored guidance for your horse's specific situation.
    • Preventing and treating rain scald involves a combination of proactive measures, careful grooming, and timely intervention. By understanding the causes and taking appropriate steps, you can ensure your horse remains healthy and comfortable even in the face of challenging weather conditions. Remember, the key is to act swiftly, and when in doubt, seek the guidance of a veterinary professional for the best possible care.




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How to care for a Thorowgood Saddle

How to care for a Thorowgood Saddle

There are many reasons a Thorowgood saddle makes an excellent choice for a first-time horse owner, so it follows that not all our Thorowgood customer will know how to look after their new purchase. Fortunately, being easy to care for is just one benefit of our popular T8 and T4 models.

T4 wipe smmoth sections with warm water

T4 SADDLES

1. Wipe down the smooth sections with warm water and a cloth. If it's really dirty, a mild detergent can be used. Remember to clean all surfaces.

2. Allow the saddle to dry naturally. DON’T put it on a radiator or leave it by the fire.

3. If the saddle has leather stirrup straps, take care NOT to apply saddle soap to the surface which comes into contact with the saddle flap.

4. Use a soft bristled brush (such a a body brush) to remove dirt from the seat and knee rolls.

5. DON'T use a suede brush. The wire bristles are too coarse for the T4 saddle material and could cause damage.

Use a soft bristled brush 

 

T8 saddle cleaning

T8 SADDLES

1. Wipe down the non-leather sections (skirt,  flap and panels) with warm water and a cloth. A mild detergent can be used to remove stubborn dirt. Remember to clean all surfaces.

2.  If the saddle has leather stirrup straps, take care NOT to apply saddle soap to the surface which comes into contact with the saddle flap.

3. Apply Rapide Leathergel to the leather parts of the saddle (seat and knee rolls) with a clean, dry cloth. 

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