Wednesday, August 31, 2016

What Do Wednesday: DIY

Very simple post today, with a simple question. 

I know quite a few of you that have used your crafty talents and actually made or modified some things for your horses. Amanda dyed her saddle (Carley dyed some things too). Emma made a hackamore (wicked cool btw) and Olivia makes a ton of stuff, most notably, bonnets!

I too have some crafty talents, and besides painting I really love to sew, especially  by hand. Machines are just too much to deal with and I can hand sew stuff while watching TV or listening to a book on tape in my BED. Its amazing. 

We all know matching everything is of upmost importance and is absolutely necessary, so my labor is definitely worth it.



Jk, but it is cute and I loved how it looked in the ring this weekend. Plus, I am now in a place with SIXTY boarders, so having all my stuff look unique and have my colors on it helps me 
1) keep track of it  
2) hopefully keep people from stealing my shit

The first thing I ever made/modified was a bonnet for Yankee. He has wee little ears and all the bonnets you can buy are way too big for him. I was broke and had no money for a custom, so I made a pattern for his ears with fabric, ripped the seams out of the ears on the black bonnet and then re-sewed by hand to his exact ears. Later, as in this year, I added the teal for B, but I sometimes throw it on Yanks when the flies are really bad. He looks dashing in it still!



I did the same thing for my Secret Santa bonnet I got last year (:D) in the ears, and then this year I added a string of red rhinestones to match his leasers XC colors. This was more difficult and I admittedly did a pretty shitty job, last second, so I will be redoing it, but it looked cute for one show

Mahm these rhinestones are not straight, this is unacceptable
Also, I added teal piping to B's fenwick bonnet (aka magical hat) by hand, after the trial and error with Yankee's back bonnet. With Yankee's I learned what stitch works best and how thick to cut the fabric. Most recently, I've been dabbling in adding color to my boring and plain Back on Track pads.

B was not intersted in photos, but sniffing the new arena and the dirt that is about to be replaced


This project has been a BITCH, since BOT pads are super thick. It probably takes me about 2 hours or longer per pad to sew, by hand. I generally do this on nights I have "free" (aka putting off homework), sitting in front of netflix watching shows I've already seen. 

After finding the piping fabric (walmart) and big ole needles that could handle the thickness (Michael's) and thread (wax thread or doubled up embroidery floss) I played around with a good stitch and where the fabric was easiest to pierce. I did my dressage pad first, and I'm still not 100% sold on the color combo. The stitches would be easy to rip out if I ever change my mind, but I definitely prefer the black and teal best. I chose black thread, because our colors are technically black and teal, and liked the contrast, even though it was on a white pad. 


After I figured that out, I did my black jumper pad, which was actually easier to sew than the white for some reason. I was able to do in one night and my fingers weren't too sore afterwards! After the success of that, I did one for my leaser in her XC colors!

I spy helper dog

Helper dog not included
THEN, because I am moving soon and already moved the horses, I have been going through my giant pile of crap that I have accumulated over the years, deciding what to throw out, what to keep and what to try and sell. One of my most favorite pads I tried to sell once, but it never sold, and I didn't have the heart to throw it out because it was almost brand-new and my parents bought it as a gift for me a couple years ago when I still evented... Problem was, the spine pressed down on B's withers too much since he is an actual shark, and it cause him pain when I used it. 

Then I thought, I BET I can sew in a wither relief. I grabbed the box cutter and never looked back. It sliced through the thick pad with no issue and after winging the measurement, I knew there was no turning back. After I cut it, I applied some glue I bought for fabric specifically, to the frayed ends. The intent was to keep all the padding and frayed shit together so that when I sewed the piping on everything would stay thicksolidtight.

After using the boxcutter
I then hand stitched (ALSO A BITCH) the opening with the scraps of fabric I had left to keep the glued edges from rubbing on the withers. You might not see the fabric while tacked up, but its really there just as protection for the skin. It took me almost an hour to do this small area, simply because that pad is SO thick. Not the prettiest thing in the world, but works for schooling.

After glueing and sewing

There are others things I have done in the past too, like sew up my own blankets, make stall signs, bumper pads for my trailer, & make my own polos and halter tube sets. Additionally, I wouldn't call this crafty, just genius, but I also use a pantyliner on the inside of my helmet to gather sweat and makeup so it doesn't ruin the helmet. Lastly, I am still working on making a cooler for winter. Its going to take ages, and all I have right now is the wool cutout.

Stained, painted and glued; The "Yankee" is now red


Did this using pool worm floaties and silver duct tape




So what I want to know is if any of you have special or fun DIY projects you've done for the barn or for your horse, and explain the process a little! please tell me, what do!?





28 comments:

  1. After reading this I am highly suspicious that you are gonna enjoy a DIY I'll be posting next week (it's a surprise for a friend who occasionally reads, so I've had to sit on it for weeks but the time is almost here!!).

    Generally tho I love DIY stuff. The hackamore was most recent (and super easy!) but I've also made shadow boxes for my ribbons, a couple jumps, and enclosed my stock trailer with plexi. At one point I had done some DIY shims and shimmable saddle pads too... Tho it didn't look very nice haha. Mostly tho it's just a question of striking when inspiration hits haha

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    1. Also - I should say that I LOVE the trim and piping you added to the saddle pads too!!

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    2. I can't WAIT for your post!!! And thank you, I really love the black, such contrast

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  2. I love the teal trim on the bonnet and black pad. Looks so sharp on B.
    I made some baby pads last year, and have since made a second batch for christmas gifts. https://jumppretty.wordpress.com/2015/04/28/the-one-where-i-was-crafty/ I do use a sewing machine, I don't know how you did that thick pad with your hands!

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    1. Omg I need to make some of those! You can never have enough bay pads!
      And thanks! It was a little rough on my thumb. Using a thimble was inefficient since I needed to grip the needle, so I had to be careful. I had to take little breaks and couldn't do a pad everyday, usually rested the fingers for a few days haha

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    2. Question - what do you guys mean by 'baby pad'? We don't use that term in Oz & I'm picturing a teeny little saddlecloth with a rattle & a nappy.

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    3. I'm crying laughing hahah! That was a visual. A baby pad is a smaller, thinner pad used everyday for schooling purposes. A lot of people customize them in fun colors etc. essentially they're pads to be used everyday, that are typically a little smaller in size and thinner than regular pads or show pads

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    4. ooooh right! I think I'd call that a 'cheap saddlecloth' haha

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  3. I've been eyeballing the ear-shrinking project for my bonnets and fly masks... my horse looks sad because the extra fabric droops at the ends of her ears. Your mods look great- makes me want to try it!

    I might have to do a post about my own DIY. So far, I've added quilt binding to saddle pads (for color) with a sewing machine and moved a buckle on a bridle to shorten the strap. The buckle move was more annoying than I anticipated and I don't know if I would do it again... but it is kind of nice to know that I *could* refit the bridle to full horse size vs. the weird not cob not horse size my mares are. I'm loving the BOT pad modification!

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    1. Thank you!!
      I am impressed you modified leather! That is one thing I've never done minus cutting the ends off a too long bite. Hahah. I usually take it to the leather guy in town. Super impressive

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  4. Love the trim on those saddle pads. Obviously I do a lot of DIY. I have a draft post that'll be coming soon on how I modified my vest and I'll say you can get this spray on fabric paint and a stencil and customize all your stuff without having to sew anything.

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    1. Thank you! And I can't wait for it! Also fabric paint, never thought of that! How permanent is it?

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  5. ok - A) You've got mad skillz and B) Pantyliner trick? What is this magic? I was just dreaming this morning of how I can get the innards of my CO skullcap clean so I don't smell like death after taking it off.

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    1. Yes, please explain this trick!

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    2. It's so simple! Just buy a pack of pantyliners and every couple of rides change it out. I peel the backing off and stick it right in the forehead area! It acts as a collecting device for sweat/makeup WONDERFULLY! I change it every two rides in summer and like every 4-5 in winter and fall. Helmet is still clean and doesn't smell as rank

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    3. Way to go feminine products! Saving lives everywhere (we used maxi pads for leg wound awhile ago).

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    4. I did that too on B's feet for a little bit hahaha

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    5. Tampons are great to staunch bloody wounds - sterile, absorbent and the handy string of course. Feminine products ftw.

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  6. I've been loving to black+teal lately. So cool you find a way to do it.

    I'm... not overly talented in that area. ;-)

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  7. All you bloggers and your awesome DIY projects are making me feel so inept and useless 😂 love the pad modifications! My main colors are black and teal too (although I'm a sucker for really anything matchy).

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  8. Your stitches are awesome! Mine look horrible regardless if I've done them by hand or with a machine. :|

    Another question: how the hell are you already at 18% before ten in the morning?!

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    1. BAHAHA, because I charge my phone at work (I routinely forget my charger and ended up just leaving it there so I know where it is at all times). So when I wake up it's pretty much almost dead. I need to find my spare charger....

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  9. Your stitching is nice - those pads look sharp. Sounds like you could use a thimble for finger saving. ;D

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  10. My mom is super crafty and makes me all sorts of stuff! She crochets ear bonnets, sews quarter sheets, Ogilvy covers... pretty much anything I can come up with! I sell a few of the patterns on my Etsy store... and I really need to add more.

    My mom actually made all of the curtains in my house, including extra-large roman shades for my sliding glass door. She's a boss!!

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  11. (I just found this blog, love it!)

    I've made my own saddle pads, crocheted my own fly bonnets since my mare has a large noggin and storebought ones never fit, made stall plates and jump standards!

    I'm also going to attempt to make my own riding pants.

    These are some of the things I've made:
    http://fireflyranch.blogspot.com/2014/12/craft-projects.html

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  12. Hey we have to DIY when broke lol!!! I've made several things. The hardest was probably the rope halters.... those are not as easy to tie as you would think. They turned out really great though.

    I've also sewn a dog blanket (modeled after a horse blanket) for my dog, modified a dressage bridle into a sidepull without cutting anything, made stall signs (not for mine since I don't have stalls haha), slow feed hay nets, training pedestal out of a tractor tire, etc. We also do all of our own building (horse barn, mounting block, etc.) but my hubby gets more credit than I do for that. I just help haha. I was thinking there was other stuff but I'm drawing a blank now.'

    Your stuff looks amazing. I had no idea you had put the piping on that black and teal pad I was admiring. Good job!! I want to make saddle pads, but I just haven't found the time.

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