Heads Up - What's On the Workbench

At the beginning of break, I didn't get a lot done.  I was too busy catching up on sleep and enjoying the absence of deadlines, tests, and papers.  By the time I had recovered from the past semester, the holidays hit.  Christmas in my family brings a wonderful sort of chaos that leaves you completely drained by the time our three straight days of festivities are over.  I spent last week working on the english saddle how-to, and I think I finished it yesterday.  I can't believe it's finally done!  I can't believe it so much that I'm going to sit on it for just a little while and make absolutely sure that I have all of the kinks worked out.

Now that the holidays and english saddle booklet are done, I've gotten some really constructive tack time in.  Here's what's on the work bench right now.

The english set in the back will have it's "official" pictures taken tomorrow afternoon and then will head to MH$P.  The saddle on the pony is done, but needs a girth and bridle.  I have a pair of rainbow reins in progress for it.  I'm thinking I'll do a crupper and breastplate to complete the cute pony look.  Maybe a couple of red bows for someone to sticky wax on the tail. 

That "thing" in the foreground is a western saddle that has me stumped.  I started it a few weeks ago, intending to make a parade saddle out of it.  The saddle decided that it didn't want to be a parade saddle, so we're going western pleasure.  I sort of lost...motivation on it, though.  The silver is giving me fits.  The carving I like, but I think I underestimated the level of difficulty my proposed silver pattern would pose.  Depending on how it turns out, it might be my donation to Show for the Cure Live, which is March 24.  That's....way too soon!

It's dark out and the light in my studio is no good for photos, but this might give you an idea of what it looks like...

Those are supposed to be feathers, not leaves, haha.  Of course, it looks better in person.  It sounds like a cop-out, but when the detail is blown up this much it can look really coarse.  Each of those little squares is a 1/4 inch square in real life. 

Class starts back up on January 17th.  I'm determined to finish school without any debt, and the new car means that I have to cut back on classes this semester.  It's a bummer, but it'll be worth it long term.  I'll be a part time student next semester, and I'm picking up an extra hour a day at work to fill in the time that a third class would take.  I think I'll have more time for tack, too, which will be an added bonus! I don't foresee commission books reopening any time soon, but if my classes end up being really light that could all change.

I have a year-in-review post planned for tomorrow, so stay tuned!


  1. The saddles are looking good als always! The stirrups are from RioRondo? These items are very expensive here and I am thinking of making them myself somehow....
    Can't wait to see your finished tutorial! ;-)

  2. The stirrups are from Horsing Around, actually! I did a post reviewing the available cast stirrups a while back, and I found that Horsing Around was not only the most realistic in shape and size (relative to the horse) but one of the cheapest. I now order my stirrups in bulk from them.

    I've had people tell me that it's not hard or expensive to cast things like stirrups and trees and whatnot, but that requires the ability to create something worth casting. THAT is where I doubt myself!

  3. Thanks for the tip, I take a look at horsing around! ;-)