Blog

The Dream Workshop 2.0

The Dream Workshop 2.0

Now some of you may remember a blog I posted last year about my less then ideal workshop. Although it was lacking in a number of areas, it did serve me well and I found ways round lots of the challenges it presented me with. However, if the last year has done anything for us, ...

Support small businesses!

Support small businesses!

I am often encouraging people to support small, local businesses, but with everything the world is going through at the moment it is more important than ever! For obvious reasons, this is something I am extremely passionate about and where possible I try to practice what I preach. I appreciate that at the moment money ...

Making small changes

Making small changes

Global warming. Something we are all very familiar with. While it’s difficult to completely transform your ways of living, there are so many small changes we can make to just do a little better! We are all getting very used to reducing our single use plastics, recycling and reducing emissions but we can also be ...

National Saddlery Competition 2020

National Saddlery Competition 2020

Well it’s that time of year again; the days are shorter, the weather is horrible, and all the saddlers in the country flock to London for the annual National Saddlery Competition. This year was another big year for me. After signing off from my apprenticeship in 2019, it was time for me to collect my ...

The Dream Workshop!

The Dream Workshop!

As much as I try not to be, I am a social media fan and spend a fair bit of time scrawling through posts and pictures. Recently though, it’s been getting me down. I follow lots of other small businesses and see a lot of beautiful workspaces; picturesque views, clever storage solutions and rustic furniture ...

Can we just all be a bit nicer to each other?

Can we just all be a bit nicer to each other?

Recently the horse community has been getting me down a bit. I find it really sad that this group of people who have so much in common, seems to be so judgemental and full of anger and hatred towards each other. Now before you all come at me, I know full well that it is ...

“How did you become a saddler?”

“How did you become a saddler?”

A question I get asked a lot, is “how did you get into saddlery?” The short story I tell people is that I stumbled across is by accident while trying to avoid going to university. That may sound like a bit of a joke, but it is the truth! During my time at school I ...

The Hertfordshire County Show 2019- Worry and Self Doubt

The Hertfordshire County Show 2019- Worry and Self Doubt

As I am sure most of you know (because I’ve been constantly posting about it on social media for the past few weeks), last weekend I had a trade stand at the Hertfordshire County Show. I’ve been going to the Herts Show almost every year for just about as long as I can remember, and ...

Rain, rain, rain!

Rain, rain, rain!

I am afraid I am being very British and writing an entire blog based on the weatherbut really, here in Hertfordshire the weather is vile. According to the local weather forecast, its going to be sticking around for a while! For all dog owners, equestrians and country lovers its business as usual but maybe with ...

Tack Safety Checks

Tack Safety Checks

Ok so a slightly more boring topic but this is just so important! Now let’s be honest, all equestrians know there are risks and must have at least a tiny bit of crazy to be riding horses. Ideally though, you don’t want to be having any accidents, especially ones that are easily preventable and before ...

BETA International 2019

BETA International 2019

It’s that time of year again! Last week I took a trip back to the NEC in Birmingham for the annual trade show BETA international. It was my 5th visit to the show but unlike previous years, this time I wasn’t there to compete in the trainee saddler competition, resulting in a much more relaxing ...

Success at The National Saddlery Competition 2019

Success at The National Saddlery Competition 2019

Every year Saddlers from all over the world flock to Saddlers Hall in London for the annual National Saddlery Competition. This year I was attending to officially receive my certificate of completion for my apprenticeship. It was a really nice way to round off 4 years of hard work. I was also fortunate enough to ...

Final Week of College

Final Week of College

This week was my final week attending The Saddlery Training Centre in Salisbury as part of my apprenticeship training. It was a week of mixed emotions… I actually completed all my compulsory exams at the beginning of the year but in order to make the most of my training I decided to try and squeeze ...

Successful first outing for the Stingray Saddle!

Successful first outing for the Stingray Saddle!

Well I’ve had a fabulous weekend. As you may know, for my final Saddle making exam, I had to make a saddle. However, rather than just make the basic GP that is recommended, I decided I wanted to make something I could actually use. Therefore, I made a dressage saddle, made to measure for my ...

Frustrating time at The National Saddlery Competition 2018

Frustrating time at The National Saddlery Competition 2018

This week has been a slightly stressful week. Part of me thought I shouldn’t blog about it because I feel I shouldn’t be advertising my mistakes. The other side of me feels that everyone makes mistakes and it’s best to admit it and see where you can go next. After all I am only an ...

BETA International 2018

BETA International 2018

Yesterday I was back at the NEC in Birmingham to visit the annual BETA international trade show. This was my 4th visit to the show and 3rd time taking part in the trainee Saddler competition put on by the Society of Master Saddlers. I always have mixed feelings about the competition at BETA. On the ...

Introductory to Saddle Fitting Course

I’ve had an action-packed week this week, all starting with a trip to Northampton to attend The Society of Master Saddlers Introductory Saddle Fitting Course. It was a fascinating course, starting with us looking at types of tree and saddle. We were all horrified to be passed some of the worst examples of saddle I ...

Bridle Fitting Course

Yesterday I attended a fascinating course put on by the Society of Master Saddlers about bridle fitting. Large portions of it I felt were basic knowledge that I feel I had from my pony club days such as where nosebands and browbands should sit and the function of different nosebands but there was also lots ...

Sewing Machine Maintenance Course

Last week I was lucky enough to attend a “Sewing Machine Maintenance” module. Although I don’t own a leather sewing machine at the moment, I do use them from time to time, most often as part of my apprenticeship. Although I am trained to hand stitch and I am a strong believer of hand stitching ...

Light-bulb moment!?

Light-bulb moment!?

Today at work as part of my apprenticeship we were out at a yard saddle fitting when a customer asked if we could repair a headpiece…pictured below is said disaster!? The story behind it is that the customers daughter had been cleaning her tack and once the headpiece was cleaned she hung it over the ...

BETA International 2017

BETA International 2017

Last week I was a competitor in the trainee saddler competition at the BETA international trade show. This was the second time I’ve agree to take part and after the event I am always glad I went but I’ve got to be honest, I tend to find the day rather stressful. I am very comfortable ...

The National Saddlery Competition 2017

This week was a really exciting week. We went down to London for the National Saddlery Competition. The main reason for my attendance was to collect my portfolio as the official recognition of me starting my apprenticeship. I also decided to enter a couple of classes – it is a competition after all! The exciting ...

First Trip to The National Saddlery Competition 2016

Well this week was an exciting week. My first trip (hopefully not the last) to The National Saddlery Competition. The competition is run by The Society of Master Saddlers and hosted by the Worshipful Company of Saddlers at Saddlers’ Hall, London. Well my first experience of Saddlers’ Hall was not a disappointment. It’s a beautiful ...

BETA International 2016

BETA International 2016

Wow this week seems to have gone by in a bit of a blurpossibly because I’ve had a stinking cold and have wanted to be curled up under a blanket! On Monday, we had a college trip to BETA international which is a huge equestrian trade fair held once a year at the NEC in ...