by Shannon Crocker and Courtney Young
image by Josh Walker from Rolex 2010
The jogs at 3-day events are a time to confirm your horse’s soundness and wellness before a strenuous trial of their (and your) athletic ability. They’re also a time to showcase your style and personality. Who would waste an opportunity like that? The only catch is that it’s harder than it seems. Trot your horse down a lane looking super fly, how hard can that be? Not so fast. Make sure to read these do’s and don’ts so that you’ll be on this year’s Best Dressed list.
Do: Wear pants that fit you well. Better yet, take your pants to a tailor who knows their way around a seam and have them fit them to you. For 40 bucks or so you’ll be wowing the crowd in a pair of basic black slacks. Audrey Hepburn didn’t need anything more and neither do you.
image via Avenue51
Also, cash in on the current trend of high-waisted, wide-bottomed pants. This line will balance proportions, mask imperfect areas (we have lots of those), and elongate the leg. Why would anyone wear anything else?
image via Emerson Made
Don’t: Wear white pants. Well, at least be super careful. We can say for sure that we wouldn’t be sprinting down a jog lane in white pants but if you’re careful, you could pull it off (Hawley Bennett did). Be careful that they’re lined and fit impeccably. Any imprefection in the fit here will multiply many times over given the color. Remember, black is universally flattering. Please draw the subsequent (and opposite) conclcusion here about white.
Do: Wear accessories in your hair or a hat on your head. Headbands, fascinators, and hats are all welcome in the jog lane. (Refer to Kate Middleton, Kelly Pugh, and Will Faudree below). This is an excellent place to express yourself.
Don’t: Wear scrunchies. Ever. Or show bows. In the jog lane or on your horse. Please. We’re begging. And, while hats and fascinators are adorable, they’re not if they’re spooking your horse or blowing off your head thanks to a gusty wind. Cringe.
Do: Polish your shoes before you jog in them. Whether they’re your everyday paddock boots, loafers, or patent leather heels, make sure they’re tidy and clean.
Don’t: Wear clogs. In the barn, yes (maybe). But not for the jogs at Rolex. And, please, if you’re going to wear heels you better be able to sprint in them. We’re not sure we could pull them off despite our love of them so we’d go with a ballet flat (try Tory Burch) or a low, stacked heel (like Stephanie’s in the top photo). Nothing is worse than a pretty picture in high heels and then awkward flailing when trying to keep up with a horse who’s ready to run a 4-star event. If you can’t run in heels then stick with the flats.
image via Tory Burch
More Rolex 3-Day Event Equestrian Style:
Bring style options for rain and sun. Wednesday might dawn bright and sunny and then switch her humor to rainy and chilly. Be ready for that and beat everyone to the punch by bringing options. Though, careful, if it rains please don’t wear Dubarrys to the jog. These are appropriate for the barn aisle but not for the panel of veterinarians evaluating your horse or for the hordes of fans who have come over hill and dale to watch you. Try Hunter Wellies if you must wear rain boots or suck it up and get your shoes wet. It’s Rolex, go all out and channel that little kid who liked to jump in puddles. Your horse does it, so give it a go you might be surprised.
Coordinate with your Horse. Remember, while this is a moment to express yourself you are first and foremost showing off your best friend and partner. Everything you wear should enhance them and their appearance.
Do step out of the box with the choice of your horse’s bridle. Last year at Rolex Buck Davidson jogged Titanium in a brown bridle, an unusual choice for a grey. It made for a classic and vintage-inspired look that stood out from the crowd. You also might choose a brow band with personality here (the Germans excelled here at the World Equestrian Games). Though, be forearned, blingy rhinestones will not score well on the best-dressed list.
Wear something that you like and is flattering to your body. While we can’t get enough ruffles and pleats those might make you want to double over and throw up. That’s cool. Know what you like and, most importantly, what looks good on you. When you walk up to the jog lane you should feel like you can take over the world – the way your horse feels when you two step into the start box. Wear what brings that out in you and the two of you will be unstoppable.
Choose something that can become your iconic style. When we say Stetson you think Will Faudree. When we say gorgeous, swinging blond hair you think Allison Springer. Bow ties (try Billy Reid), pocket squares, headbands, and stunning heels can all become your own signature items. We like that.
image via Billy Reid
It’s better to be overdressed than underdressed. This is always true in life as well as in the jog lanes. Why not go more formal and really stand out?
If you’re still lost in a labrynth of choices look back at the Rolex 2010 Best Dressed for some style inspiration. There’s nothing wrong with taking one of those looks and recreating it. We’re forever going back to Coco Chanel and Audrey Hepburn for inspriation. Lean on Laine Ashker and Lauren Kieffer who led the pack last year.