Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Premier Raised Fancy Stitched Breastplate Review

Schneider Saddlery Premier Raised Fancy Stitched Breastplate
There are some things that I buy for Casey that are solely for functionality. Then there are the things that I buy her just because they are fun, or cool, or fancy. But the best things to buy are those that are both functional and fun, cool, and fancy. Schneider Saddlery's Premier Raised Fancy Stitched Breastplate is exactly one of those things that ticks all of the boxes.

I started looking into breastplates, because I noticed that as the jumps started going up in height, my saddle started to very slightly slip back. Now, my saddle isn't perfect, but it has been approved by both my trainer and my vet as a saddle that fits Casey very well. I think that a little bit of saddle slippage is ok, but I knew that I would feel better if I had an extra piece of equipment as a backup.
Extra stability while jumping
Since buying a breastplate wasn't a super essential thing, I really didn't want to spend a lot of money on it. I knew that I wanted a leather breastplate, but didn't really care if it was super fancy. Schneider Saddlery's breastplate was super affordable, only $40, and so that's what I bought. For the quality, I think that $40 is a great price. When I recently looked at the price I saw that the list price has gone up to $70, but it is still currently "on sale" for $40.

The Premier Raised Fancy Stitched Breastplate is made out of buffalo leather. Buffalo leather is known for its suppleness and durability. I'm not a leather expert, but I'd say that this product seems to be strong, and it is definitely bendable. It molds itself around the shape of the horse. The leather feels smooth and seems tough, like it would take a lot to hurt it. It isn't a soft leather, but then again, I don't think that breastplates should really be made out of soft leathers.
Buffalo leather breastplate
Since this is the "fancy stitched" breastplate option, it does have the raised stitching pattern. The thread is the same color as the leather and so doesn't really stand out in the way that white/ivory thread stands out.

Even though this breastplate isn't the fanciest of all breastplates, it is pretty awesome looking. It has simple clean lines, and the silver heavy-duty hardware provides a nice accent to the dark brown leather. The middle ring that holds together all of the straps looks especially nice in my opinion. I really like the simplicity of this breastplate. Other styles are in trend right now, like fluffy sheep fur pads, multiple connection points, and colorful straps, but those trends might fall out of fashion and straight-up clean leather will never be out of fashion.
Clean leather and silver hardware
Breastplates typically serve two purposes: 1. To help the saddle stay in place, and 2. To be the attachment piece for a martingale. I wanted a breastplate only to serve the first purpose, since Casey revolts against martingales. The Premier Raised Fancy Stitched Breastplate is able to serve both purposes. It has a removable standing martingale attachment. Since I didn't need it, I just took it off, which was a very easy and quick task, but it's nice that it comes with that for the people who need it.

There are very few options when it comes to this product. The only color option is havana, but that works for me since it's the color of the rest of my tack. As far as sizing, there are two options; cob or full size. I opted for the full size for Casey, knowing that the belly strap was going to be too long. I wanted to make sure that she had plenty of shoulder room and since it's always possible to punch holes in leather I decided to go bigger. Casey's a pretty standard size Thoroughbred and the full size is a bit big on her. The shoulder straps are about the right length for her, but the belly strap was huge. I had to punch 3 holes in it to make it fit her. That being said, I do not think she would have fit in the cob size and so I think I made the right choice.
Jumping with the breastplate
In terms of use, this product is definitely holding up to my expectations. It is wearing in really nicely and the leather is becoming nicely pliable. It is easy to get on and off of Casey (only takes a few seconds) since it only has three connection points. I have had absolutely no problems with the product and am happy with it.

Overall I think that this is a great breastplate if you are looking for something that is simple and affordable.
Casey approves too!

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