Posts Tagged ‘Arab tack’

Early Arabian Tack

I used to make A LOT of Arabian tack. It’s been several years since I’ve made anything new, and while I’ve tried to get back into it, the interest just isn’t there right now.

But it was really appealing to me when I first got started in the hobby. I was really inspired by Liz Shaw of “Arabian Acres” (now “Tick Tock Studio,” but I don’t know if she’s active in the hobby anymore 😦 ) and spent so much time on her website, admiring all her costumes and collection of gorgeous Arabian models, most painted and haired by Faye Cohen. ❤

One thing I loved about Arabian tack was that I could find all of the materials I needed at a local craft store. The cost to make it was also much, much less than the cost of making leather pieces, so that was a plus for the jobless-teenage me. 😛 (fun fact – tack making, especially when you’re first starting out, can get really expensive really fast!)

I posted pictures in the past of my first and second Arabian costumes, but I don’t think I’ve ever shown all the (surviving) halters, so here goes!

First, a ribbon halter:

It’s so cringe-y and the chains are WAY too long and unsafe, and I want to say I put it together with a glue gun.

Here’s an early attempt at a braided halter.

The chain is better, but really tarnished.

Here’s a different style. If I remember right this was going to have a Hollywood style breastcollar and costume made to go with it.

I got really interested in Native style tack, so here’s a first attempt at a braided halter with cowrie shells. Getting better!

I’ve always liked the texture and color of this halter. It was made by blending two shades of blue together.

Here’s another costume attempt, also in the Hollywood style. I wanted to make something that would fit over an english saddle (like what’s commonly used in the show ring) but it just wasn’t working, so I gave up.

Lastly, here’s another native style halter. I did post photos of this one (years and years ago) and even though the chain is STILL way too long, I’ve always liked it.

That super tiny three strand braid took FOREVER.

I can’t see myself getting back into Arabian tack anytime soon, but you never know! Seeing these old pieces again has definitely inspired me some. 🙂

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Sorry for the lack of posts here… I’m stuck in the middle of this weird hobby burnout. In January, I feel like I started full speed ahead, then immediately hit a wall. I’ve been working on a lot of Etsy orders but aside from that, haven’t felt motivated or inspired to get anything else done… which is frustrating because there are things I’d really like to get done.

I want to get back into blogging but it’s been tough to get into that again too. Recently Copperfox posted a 10 Day Challenge on their blog, and in an attempt to get back into the swing of things, I’m going to give it a go. (scattered over the next few weeks/months or so? Cause ten days in a row is too much for me right now)

So, Day 1: Inspiration Day.

“An easy start to our challenge! Find something that inspires you. It could be a picture of an unusual colour of horse that you would like to turn into a model, a how-to tutorial video or a piece in your favourite magazine about collecting things that you love. Or it could be a song, film, piece of poetry- whatever it is, find something that gets your creativity going!”

My inspiration comes from a mix of things. Real horses, obviously, a life-long fascination/love for miniatures, and my younger self’s desire to own a horse of my own.

I’ve always liked horses, but the “horse crazy” didn’t quite hit until I was in my early teens and taking weekly riding lessons. It was all very basic, casual and laid back, but I loved it. I was obsessed with anything horse related, whether it was books, movies, music, and eventually Breyers.

I *think* this was one of the last rides before moving to MT

I *think* this was one of the last rides before moving to MT

Owning a real horse wasn’t possible so the models became the next best thing. I had been making miniatures of sorts for years, so I was really drawn to making horse-related miniatures, whether that was tack, props or buildings. I think I still have the plans for a huge stablemate-sized ranch, loosely based off of the one I rode at. It had stalls, pastures, a tack room, arenas, wash racks… the works.

Start of the madness collection:

First halter and “arab” halter:


First western saddle… heyyy there’s the tack trunk in the back!


It’s been at least 13 years but the “horse crazy” phase is still going strong… maybe not quite as strong as it was at one point, but strong enough. I am still unable to keep a real horse, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. I guess, in a way, models are still the next best thing.

My account on Pinterest is stuffed full of things that inspire me… real horses, tack, minis, etc.

Aside from that, I get a lot of inspiration from the people in this hobby. I have since I discovered it and will continue to do so as long as I’m involved with it. The level of talent and creativity in the hobby is awesome, and it’s always encouraging to know that there are people like me out there… who get excited over tiny stuff and new colors on plastic model horses. XD

There are too many individuals for me to list as inspiration here, so here are the first few who come to mind.

Juliane Gartska of Luckenbach Ranch – her photos have fooled me multiple times, as many of them look like full sized horses instead of models.

European hobbyists in general… some of the photos of models and miniature scenes I’ve seen are incredible and extremely realistic. It’s a side of the hobby that I rarely see among hobbyists in the USA, but I LOVE it. I have a love of haired models as well and am sad that it’s not very popular nowadays. If I ever get into customizing I think all my horses will be haired… 😛

CharArt – Char’s work is amazing. Whenever she updates with new tack photos I feel inspired to start working on my own pieces again.

Liz Shaw of Arabian Acres (now Tick-Tock Studio) was a HUGE inspiration for me and my interest in Arabian tack. I’m not sure what she’s up to nowadays, but I remember spending so much time on her old website, admiring her beautiful horses and Arabian costumes.

Last Alliance Studios – one of my very favorite hobby blogs, and always a huge inspiration! I love the amount of detail in all of her miniatures and dioramas. Plus, Julips are fantastic. 😀

Jennifer Buxton of Braymere Custom Saddlery – Jennifer’s work and blog have been a source of inspiration for several years now. Her tack tips and tutorials are a huge help and her photography is always a treat.

Outside of the hobby, there are several miniature artists that I take inspiration from as well. Here are a few of them:

Sugar Charm Shop – she makes 1/12 scale food, miniatures, animals and dolls. (and makes it look super easy!)

Mimine Mini – her miniatures are incredibly detailed and often work exactly like the real thing. She’s from Korea, so even though I don’t understand what’s being said in her videos, they’re still easy enough to follow along.

1 inch Minis – While I haven’t been following her for very long, I do admire the way she shares step-by-step photos of the creation of her miniatures.

Writing all this out has helped somewhat, so I’m off to finish some bell boot orders and hopefully get some miniature Breyer boxes completed as well… the digital files are so close to being done!


Until then…

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Green Presentation Set

A few months back I accepted a commission for a couple Arabian tack sets. Over the weekend I completed the first, which was based off a halter/collar set for real horses:


The goal was to try to re-create it in miniature as closely as possible, which brought a lot of challenges. I like being challenged in tack-making though, and this set had me thinking outside the box for quite a few things.


While it’s not an exact copy of the original, I think it’s still pretty close, even with the slight changes in design.




I am really pleased with the gold medallions and “beaded” tassels. The medallions were made from black Sculpey clay, with a layer of gold Pearl Ex pigment brushed on.

The tassels were created with a mix of thin wire and polymer clay as well, in both liquid and solid form.



All in all, I’m pleased with how it turned out, as so is the new owner, which makes me happy. 🙂

In other news…

I’ve had several people ask me when I’ll be posting more things for sale on Etsy, and my answer is that I don’t know yet. Soon, I hope, but “soon” can mean so many different things. I am planning on posting a preview on my blog (with a date!) first, so really, the best way to stay informed is to subscribe to my blog via email, or like my page on facebook, since I crosspost over there. I’m not trying to gain new followers by saying that, haha, but since I will not be following-up with individuals whenever I post something new for sale, it really is the best way to stay informed. Thanks so much for the interest in my work, I really appreciate it. 🙂

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