Horse Stockings

horse-stockings

milos-stockingA few years ago, I made these cute little stockings for my horses (the total cost for everything was under $15.00). The horses don’t seem to care that their stalls bring some Christmas cheer, but I love seeing them hanging on their doors and filling them with treats. They are such a cute way to bring personalized Christmas decorations into the barn. Because they are made with the inexpensive felt stockings if they get ruined (by hungry or curious horses), you aren’t out a lot of money. Someday, I would like to branch out into even more spectacular horse stockings, like the completely hand-made and embroidered stocking I made my niece. Do you decorate your stalls? 475123_10152354495935635_689482873_o

New for the New Year

Lately, I have had a lot going on; searching for a job in Stevens Point, visiting family and Todd, and a new adventure into reining. Maybe it isn’t the new year yet, but I’ve made a lot of changes to the site and finally created my Etsy shop! I am so excited about the changes and hope it brings me new inspiration in 2014! I also took time to really examine various parts of Homemade Horseman including logos and fonts. I wanted to be absolutely sure I was using “free for commercial use” fonts. I chose a new, very simple,  fun font. I also remade the general non-text logo. The horse-shoe and clover sort of became my trademark with the first set of cosmetic bags I made, then even more when I began embroidering and painting them into things. It’s my special little way of wishing my buyers, “Good Luck.”

Some days, I think did I start this site too early? Did I start selling my products before I really should have? Maybe. If I didn’t start somewhere, no matter how long it takes to get established, I wouldn’t be improving at all. I thank everyone who has supported Homemade Horseman this year and I hope to bring more in the future years!

Now some fun stuff… here are few of the logos-labels-brands…whatever you want to call them:logos

The bottom two labels will be used for a couple of the new ideas I have. Keep an eye out for announcements for these projects!

FYI…

Yes, I have been neglecting the site and facebook page. I have just been up to a lot of stuff and doing some thinking about where I want to go with the site. In the next few days…or weeks, I plan on doing some serious site remodeling. If you check the page and it looks really crazy, remodeling is probably the reason! I am hoping for some new inspiration from a new look! See you all soon!

Stall Signs…

Before I left for the show the weekend before last, I felt it extremely important to paint a stall sign for Tango. I had an idea and I wanted to try it out; even if there really wasn’t the time to do it. Chalkboard everything has been fairly popular for a while now and I will admit, I really don’t mind that. I like the high contrast of black and white and many of the fonts associated with the trend. So, I went for it. It turned out OK! It was a pain trying to see any of my outlines. After I had painted “Tango” and the text, I realized I was going to have to seal it, negating any use of the chalkboard paint in the background. I also wanted to make sure it really had the chalkboard feel so I high-light and erased, with chalk, around the paint. That totally disappeared under the sealer. All in all, I am pretty pleased with the sign which I rushed through painting just before left (the sealer was still drying on the drive to the barn)! Check it out! Oh and below it, my final (I think) revision of her breeding chart. The horses which appear as just black are horses I can’t find any pictures of!

Tango's stall sign, "chalkboard edition"
Tango’s stall sign, “chalkboard edition”
Now, to just get it printed large enough to frame and read. Canvas? Hmmm...
Now, to just get it printed large enough to frame and read. Canvas? Hmmm…

Bloodlines, Breeding, Pedigree…

50th Anniversary Registration APHAWhatever you want to call it a lot of work goes into breeding the show horses we ride and nowadays many studs even have their own logos and fan clubs! Since I hit a brick wall doing my own family research, I turned to my horses with a fantastic idea for some artwork. Last year, APHA celebrated their 50th anniversary and to commemorate it they offered limited edition registration papers with the 50th anniversary logo and hand-colored likeness of your horse. I was all over that and really excited to get mine in the mail (they were $50 a piece). They are pretty cool but when it came down to it, I’ll admit I was a tad disappointed because I thought I could probably make something just as cool for a lot less money.

So, I’ve been doodling and Photoshop-brush-making in my spare time at work…

If you don’t have APHA +, I highly recommend spending the $15.00 for a 1 month subscription. I’ve been having more fun than I probably should looking up horses and their adorable registration photos! I would also quickly like to give APHA a shout-out for being awesome and to tell PtHA and AQHA they should get on with adding registration photos to their websites as well.

OK….so minus most of the QH in my mare’s breeding I’ve created a pretty sweet little piece. With a few more edits, I think I’ll blow it up a little larger, have it printed, and frame it. (I want to see if I can find any pics of missing QHs and add a different font too). I really like the look of the ‘hand-sketched’ details.

Tango's breeding draft 1...I still have some other cool ideas for it.
Tango’s breeding draft 1…I still have some other cool ideas for it. (click on the pic to make it larger, if you want to see more of the details).

A Horse Box: Review & Give Away!- Winner Announced!

All the goodies that came in the August Box!
All the goodies that came in the August Box!

CONGRATS TO SEPTEMBER BOX WINNER: MONICA SEIBERLICH!

I was so excited when I found out about the “Birchbox” of the horse world, “A Horse Box.” I promptly liked the company’s facebook page and added a subscription to my “Horse Things” wishlist on Amazon. I was so excited when A Horse Box got in touch with me and offered to send me the “August Box” to review (and a bonus they offered a giveaway for the September box).

Now, I’ve been out-of-town for a week but when I arrived home the box was waiting for me and I was pretty excited. The box was filled with these products:

·         Nicker Bait,  horse treats

·         Majesty’s Animal Nutrition Wafers, horse treat supplements

·         Absorbine Ultra Shield EX Roll On Insect Repellant

·         Miniature Horse World Magazine

·          Equine Wellness Magazine

·         Arnicure Equine Spray Liniment

·         Silverquine Horse Wound and Summer Sore Dressing

The August Box was planned to fit the summer necessities of horse ownership, which really shows the care and thought that goes into the boxes. The items were also presented very nicely in a roomy box with a few informational cards, and a 15% discount coupon to Just Dandy Beautique. I was pleasantly surprised at how large most of the samples are and that I recognized many of the brands, but I was also excited to see some brands new to me. I absolutely love trying new products of any brand! The magazines were also a nice addition and I especially enjoyed the Equine Wellness magazine; however, the Miniature Horse World doesn’t really fit me in particular. Maybe it was a sign I should get a mini? My horses loved the treats and the fly repellant will definitely not go to waste!

A Horse Box subscription runs from $12.00 to $30.00 per month and would make such a great gift for the horse-person in your life. I rarely get horse-related gifts because people are always worried they will get me the wrong thing. You can’t go wrong with A Horse Box.  The retail value of the boxes range from $25.00 to $75.00 which is well worth the subscription price. I can only see this company growing and I can’t wait to see what products they will add to their line! You can purchase a subscription on its website .

Have I “Ooohed & Ahhhhed” enough about it yet? Is there anything I would change about the box? Nope. But! I dream in the future of a market place or links to full size products on their site, even if it is just products by month. You know, in case I feel like I need to buy some more! I would also love to see a list of the brands that may be included in the boxes (I swear I saw one somewhere but now I can’t find it)!

I highly recommend A Horse Box for all horse owners. It is such a fun way to try new products and spoil yourself and horse each month.

Now, how would you like a chance to try one out yourself!?

The Giveaway!

The Winner Receives: A Horse Box’s September box!

How To Enter: Like A Horse Box on Facebook  as well as Homemade Horseman on Facebook and leave a comment on this post letting me know that you have.

Details: This giveaway will run until Sunday, September 1, 2013 at 11:59pm ET. The winner will be chosen at random and announced here and on FB on Monday, September 2, 2013. Only open to those living in the continental US.

If you are interested in subscribing to A Horse Box, visit their website’s subscription page: A Horse Box – Subscribe.

A Horse Box was kind enough to gift me this month’s box and the opinions stated on this website are my own.

All Bloggers Are Great Photographers…

It seems that way at least, especially if you look at many of the successful blogs. It also seems many of their friends are fabulous photographers as well. I see the lovely photos up on many blogs and think to myself, “I can make this happen.” Well, folks, I am not a particularly spectacular photographer. I get some pictures and they look O.K. but they surely aren’t fantastic. The other night, I went to the barn with my camera strapped around my neck prepared to take some awesome pictures of the  new polo wraps I’d made in action. I got a few good shots of Tango standing in the cross ties but I can’t really take a photo of myself riding…so, I enlisted the help of my mother. She may be one of the world’s worst photographers even when she can figure out the camera. It did not help that on that night, Tango and I were being far from photogenic.  Since, I can’t afford to hire a professional photographer to follow me around and make me look good, you will just have to enjoy and chuckle at what I end up with. Please keep in mind; these are still the best pictures of many! Also, check out the cool things I’ve been making! Painted Pattern Horse Shoes and Polo Wraps with custom logos!

The painted pattern on these horse shoes make them more fun than just a solid color!
The painted pattern on these horse shoes make them more fun than just a solid color!
wraps5
My first attempt at hand-painted logos on polo wraps!
wraps2
A close up of the polo wrap and logo
wraps1
Tango’s new fancy wraps!
wraps3
Tango takes modeling very seriously…as you can see.
Custom Painted Logo for Polo Wraps (hand-painted).
Custom Painted Logo for Polo Wraps (hand-painted).
tango and me4
Once we got Tango to put her ears up the window to snap a picture was milliseconds. Inevitably, the rush resulted in a blurry picture.
tango and me2
Out of all the pictures this is the only one that isn’t blurry and both Tango and I are somewhat paying attention.
tango and me 5
I thought getting out of the saddle and grabbing a handful of grass would make pictures easier. Tango just wanted the grass but not in exchange for nice pictures. We gave up after this.
A fantastic picture of my 'photographer' while I was explaining how the camera worked. Her shirt says, "It's my job to be difficult" (It's the truth).
A fantastic picture of my ‘photographer’ while I was explaining how the camera works. Her shirt says, “It’s my job to be difficult” (It’s the truth).

New Again

Since the beginning of the year, I have been saving any cash I earn selling things and from odd jobs. My full-time job earns me just enough to pay bills and that’s about it. So, I’ve been saving…but not just for the sake of saving; I’ve had a goal. A few years ago I bought a beautiful Billy Cook show saddle. It was lovely and had quite a lot of silver on it too, but I didn’t love it and it was really uncomfortable for me. I sold it and used the money for bills and school. But then, I didn’t have a show saddle which was O.K. because I really wasn’t showing anyway. Now that I am trying to get back in the game (I will admit it is a painfully slow process), I need a show saddle again. After months of saving and a lot of looking, I found one! It is a 1997 Circle Y and I love it. The price was fantastic and I love the tooling. It’s not your standard basket and floral pattern. I took for a test ride the day it arrived; can I ride in it every day please? It has found a new life and new show career.

Another “New Again” story? Yep. Have you seen all those chalkboard Breyer horses and animals on Pinterest and Etsy? They are pretty sweet. While, I have plenty of old beat-up Breyer horses to DIY chalkboard-i-fy, I never had any other Breyer animals. I saw a listing on eBay for a set containing Breyer’s Bison, Elk, and Moose. I snatched it up for a whopping $20.00 (shipping included). The Bison sells on Etsy for $75.00 from “Chalk it Up” by Hounds tooth Design.  It’s pretty cool and now for less than $7.00 I have one sitting at my house. (I am no professional painter though)! The moose, I painted with glossy red and I still need to finish it and the elk I have yet to paint.

While I was chalkboard painting the bison, I did a little side project with some contact paper and an old jar. I painted the inside red, attached my cut-out contact paper designs, then chalkboard painted over the outside. I like it! There is no limit to what I could be painting next!

I love getting a good deal and giving things new lives!New Saddle vase1 vaseChalkboard Buffalo

Weekend Inspiration

In just a couple short months, I will be moving to Stevens Point, Wisconsin. And so will my horses and all my horse things. Currently my massive amounts of ‘extra’ horse gear is hanging out in the trailer, an entire corner of the garage, and a few other random locations throughout the house. The trailer belongs to my mom, and well, so does the house and garage. I will soon need to find a storage solution that works for the 2 bedroom apartment Todd and I have. I have a cool trunk filled (really, really stuffed) with reins, bits, cinches, halters, headstalls, brushes and an assortment of other horse-related things. It works nice but just scratches the surface of my storage needs. My plan? I’m going to build a tack storage unit/armoire/closet or maybe I can re-purpose something. I’m thinking a re-purpose project would be better, as I have no carpentry skills whatsoever. Someday, someday, I will. Any who, I hope I can find something to get started on this weekend. Last weekend, I cleaned my room and did laundry. Oh yes, very exciting. It had been neglected for quite sometime. Let’s hope for a more productive and interesting weekend! Have fun! Below are a couple of tack storage inspirations (though Pinterest holds so many more).

via Pinterest (I could not seem to track down the original source...I would love to know where this is!)
via Pinterest (I could not seem to track down the original source…I would love to know where this is!)
via Georgetown Stable Outfitters
via Georgetown Stable Outfitters