"Smile! It keeps your brain from falling out when you're frustrated!" - Clinton Anderson (Downunder Horsemanship)

"They say boys never grow up, their toys just get bigger. I say I never grew up, my 'My Little Ponies' just got bigger!" - Me

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


Ok, so I don't completely get the whole Steampunk costuming fad, and haven't ventured into it yet myself.  But some of my costuming friends have, including my photographers from the Renaissance Photoshoot of Cody and I (still waiting for the pics of Lady and I with the dress).

But in exchange for the Renaissance photos, Lady and Cody helped out with some steampunk photos (Cody for ground pics, Lady for mounted ones)........

You know you have a steady eddie when there is a highly modified noise making Nerf cannon involved and she could care less!

So what the heck is Steampunk?  Good question.....and one I seem to have a hard time answering when asked.....but it seems to be a combination of Victorian era meets Wild West era meets Steam Power era meets Science Fiction.  The best example that everyone seems to come up with is Will Smith's movie "Wild Wild West".  Lots of brass and gears and strange things.  

Who knows, I may venture into it yet.  I mean, Victorian era riding outfit gone steampunk?  It could happen!  And I have the horses to make it look good!  Yeah, we'll see, I have many other costuming projects to finish this winter, and I'll be lucky to get through all of those.

Though I must say, I think my favorite Steampunk costume that I've seen so far.......Steampunk Boba Fett.....but then we already know I'm a Star Wars geek!

Ok, sorry about the total derailment!  Back to your regularly scheduled program, with a little more horse and a little less weird......

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Blanket Washing

Today was blanket washing day.  Cody decided to help.

"Ok mom, I'll hold it down!  You scrub!"

Thanks Cody girl!  Lady decided to stay out of the way.  A little cold to be getting wet.  But blankets are washed.....well, rinsed and spot scrubbed, way too cold and insanely windy to do much more than that today.  Someday I'll actually do this during the summer instead of waiting till it's fall and cold.  But now I can get the ripped ones sewn up, and finish getting them rewaterproffed for winter. 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Step Back In Time

So this past weekend, I took a step back in time.....in a couple of ways......  Back to the Renaissance, and back to when I could still ride my Cody girl.....  Well, in pictures anyway......

I started making this dress a few years ago.  I picked out the fabrics specifically because the colors would go so well with Cody's beautiful red dun coat.  And I was going to get pictures riding Cody in it when it was done!

I had a few pictures taken on Cody in it a couple years ago, but it was still very much a work in progress at the time.  It was wearable, that was about it.  The bodice didn't come out right and needed to be remade, sleeves weren't done yet, beadwork was only half done, still needed to make the partlet and the caul for my hair.  So we had work in progress pictures, but I wanted pictures on Cody with the finished product.

And finally this summer, just in time for the festival season, I sewed on the last of the beadwork, tied on the bejeweled sleeves, put everything together, and after literally hours upon hours of sewing and hand beading, declared my first court gown officially complete!

And I can no longer ride my Cody girl........

Cody's knee never completely fused after her surgery like it should have.  She's pasture sound, but not rideable sound.  At least not yet......  After going back to see the surgeon and find out our options, I think we're going to try the surgery again.  Dr. Caron has never had one of these fail before, unfortunately Cody had to be the first.  But she is in great health and of sound body, the rest of her joints are fine, if we can just get the rest of that knee joint to fuse, she should be sound enough to ride again.  As soon as finances allow, we'll try the surgery again (thankfully at a reduced cost).  Probably end of this month, or first of next month. 

So here I am with my dress finally done, and I can't ride my girl.  Yes, I have sweet Lady (and I did get some pictures riding her in the dress as well and will post some when I get them from the photographer), but this dress was made for Cody.

I finally decided I was getting on my girl, even if only for a few minutes, and even if all we did was just stand there.  I wasn't sure how it would go, she hasn't had anyone or even a saddle on her back in a year and a half since she first got hurt.  And here I am climbing on her back in 10+ yards and several pounds of court gown.  Maybe that was wrong of me, but she showed no signs of concern as I carefully climbed on her back off the mounting block.  She honestly could have cared less. 

She even willingly walked off on her own without my asking and was happy to walk around, even if just slow and easy.  And she hasn't forgotten a thing.  She collected up so nice and light in the bridle.  Even did some leg yield and side passing, remembered how to turn on the haunches and forehand with light aids.  She was an absolute angel.  I nearly cried.  Heck, I am crying right now.  I miss riding her so much!

Thank you Cody girl!  It might have only been a 15 minute ride, but it was worth every second of it!  You have no idea how much you made my day! 

And how much I love that beautifully expressive face of yours.  A noble steed indeed, befitting of the Duchess stature of that dress.

Thanks big girl!  I needed that.

And if all goes well, we'll do this again in the spring....in more appropriate riding gear, out on the trails, with Lady as the pony and you as my mount.  I hope and pray.

Yes, you can have some grass now!  You deserve it beautiful!

All photos (c) New Age Duchess Designs