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Equestrian Couture

From left, Kasia Struss, John Galliano with Karlie Kloss and Chanel Iman

Spring-summer 2010 haute couture displays shot out of the gates on Monday with a whinnying equestrian themed collection at Dior. In the first heavyweight show of the season, Christian Dior designer John Galliano looked to the skilled horsewomen of the 19th century for his collection of nip-waisted jackets and flowing skirts.

Forget the “it” bag. Dior called on the chic women of the world to ditch their handbags for a truly useful accessory: the riding crop. The models, in skirt suits of fine red and grey wool, wearing veiled top hats and lace-up boots with towering heels, were all carrying whips.

Kylie Minogue, one of a gaggle of A-list guests at the show, was sure the accessory could come in handy. “I’m sure I could make a few moves with a riding crop,” the pint-sized pop star – dressed in a black-and-white check Dior dress – told The Associated Press.

Besides the equestrian garb – built on a variation of Dior’s iconic Bar jacket, with heavily draped peplums – the collection also included short cocktail dresses covered in outrageous embroidery and jewel-toned ball gowns that evoked the long, stately silhouette of a John Singer Sargent painting.

Galliano, who always appears in costume to take a final bow, strutted the catwalk in white jodhpurs, a velvet jacket with tails, boots with a considerable heel and the summer’s next big accessory – a swishing whip.

Critics love the collection, as they usually do. “There was one sensational dress on Chanel Iman, a cocktail of lace and tulle flowers, which rendered the U.K. model so beautiful you could just count the hearts being broken,” Godfrey Deeny wrote for Fashion Wire Daily, clearly getting a little carried away by the magic of couture.

Read more at The Cut Blog on nymag.com.

Rachel Zoe’s pick: Christian Dior Riding Boots

The powerhouse stylist says nothing reeks sophistication quite like a pair of luxurious riding boots. As such, she is constantly searching vintage boutiques and designer emporiums alike for that perfect equestrian set. The hunt is over this season, thanks to Christian Dior, who shows us how it is done with these refined leather beauties. They are the ones!

“Though riding boots got their start as purely practical footwear for jockeys, they have long been a huge player in the fashion world. This fall, they are more on-trend than ever before with countless designers interpreting the style—Rag & BoneBurberryAnn Demeulemeester…the list goes on. Today’s Christian Dior pair won me over because of their stacked heel and enameled buckles. A little obsessed. They will transition you from autumn to winter, while instantly revving up any outfit with a dash of casual cool. For a getup that is guaranteed to be posh, throw them on with stovepipe jeans or leggings, an oxford button-up and structural coat. Now, off to the races!” RZ

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Farms We Love: Double H Farm

Owned and operated by the Harrison family, Double H Farm produces, competes and sells top quality show jumpers. The Harrison’s have campaigned numerous incredible athletes such as Quickstar II Z, Sands of Time, Night Train, Carlsson Vom Dach, Goldika, and Sapphire and the impressive Stallion, Orlando. Double H Farm is located in Ridgefield, Connecticut. Since 2005, the farm has undergone a series of renovations to turn it onto a working horse farm. The 3.5 acre Grand Prix field is especially noteworthy, compete with two open waters, double liverpools, a table bank, slid bank, grob, ditch and hedge jumps. 

From Ridgefield Magazine: Equine Dreams at Double H

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The Middleburg Mystique

Horses, lavish parties, elegant estates, murders, and rivalries – an inside look at the people, places and mystique that surround Middleburg, Virginia. “Middleburg Mystique” by Vicky Moon, reveals the charms, gossip, and scandals of this small well-to-do village, and the surrounding swath of horse farms just 50 miles west of Washington, D.C. It tells of scandalous divorces (like actor Robert Duvall’s wife running off with the poolman) and racy murders (like arms heiress Susan Cummings shooting her Argentinean polo-playing lover). Middleburg has captivated the Kennedys, Elizabeth Taylor, Robert Wagner, and Oliver North. It has gossiped about misdeeds, then turned around and protected both rich and lowly as if they were all family. “Middleburg Mystique” also provides an insider’s peek behind the grand stone entrances of massive estates with names such as “The Meadows” or “Heathfield” that belong to families such as the Firestones, Mellons, and Marriotts.

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At Home in Lexington

bagley barn


The duo behind American fashion label, Badgley Mischka, Mark Badgley and James Mischka, have beautifully refurbished a farm in Lexington, Kentucky, featured in Elle Decor. The two met at Parsons and founded Badgley Mischka in 1988. They’re known for their red-carpet ready evening gowns which are worn by tastemakers such as Oprah Winfrey. Their use of of equestrian themes and stylized accessories in a restrained manner, makes you yearn to sip coffee in their home and watch the horses grazing outside the window. Beautifully crafted leather saddles, bridles and tall boots are all finely constructed with special attention to detail. This fastidiousness dovetails nicely with the interior design world. A balance of black, white and natural wood elements in the backdrop of this elegant, historically rich area creates a warm and inviting home.

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A Continuous Lean

A Continuous Lean

A Continuous Lean is about things. American things, good looking things, well designed things and all sorts of other things. Sometimes A Continuous Lean even talks about people and ideas. That’s it, keep it simple. More good, less bad. ACL is the product of Michael Williams, a native son of Ohio. Currently, Michael lives in New York City and works on the factory floor at Paul + Williams, a marketing and pr firm.

Old American Flag

ACL Shop

ACL maintains an online shop for items Made in the USA. There are many Made in the USA lists throughout the internet, nearly all of them tacky and in poor taste. These awful websites have led ACL to compile a list of stylish and cool brands that make their goods in America. One of their goals with this is to make it easier to locate and buy domestically produced apparel products. Another motivating factor is their desire for things Made in the USA to be embraced by a younger, more stylish consumer.

contact@acontinouslean.com

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Wellie Field Tote

Wellie field tote

The town of East Aurora, New York, a patchwork landscape of horse farms and agriculture, sets the tone for this versatile tote bag in Italian rubber. Inspired by the Wellie Boots worn by riders and outdoor enthusiasts alike, this well designed tote is easy to wear and deceptively roomy, to keep everything from your iphone and keys to your helmet and half chaps stylishly at hand. Highly polished chromed brass halterfittings add a final luxe flourish.

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JumpLine Designs

 

 

Pole Bracelet   

Pole Bracelet

Jump Poles

JumpLine Designs

According to Oregon-based designer and equine entrepreneur, Mollie Wolfe, the goal of Jumpline Designs is to represent the love of the horse, without giving up style that transitions from stable to show ring to an elegant dinner party. Jumpline Designs creates enamel jewelry that captures the essence of the equestrian world with subtleness and sophistication. Visit jumplinedesigns.com

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