What’s my favorite thing about this most wonderful, magical time of the year? That’s an easy answer – stockings. And I don’t mean the kind you pull on to your feet. (Sorry, fam)
Hung by the chimney with care, holiday stockings in my childhood home weren’t filled with toiletries or candy. They were brimming over with pint-sized gifts that were as good as anything that fit under the tree and perfect for a horse crazy little kid. We're talking horseshoe earrings, hoof picks, stock pins, unique horse-themed tree ornaments, and, once, a bell from a flying reindeer’s harness (which I still have and it's one of my favorite things).
I've always loved 'opening' my stocking, gently feeling each small item for clues of its identity before bringing it into the light. The gifts in my stocking these days are decidedly more adult but nevertheless equestrian related. (Yea, I still get a stocking at 30 years old. It’s the only thing I ask for because I’m a child at heart.) Here are some stocking-sized surprises for the horse lover in your life this holiday season.
(Dear Santa, please consider this an official list.)
I’m a simple girl with simple taste, and the soft, pebbled leather Piccolo Medio by Asmar Equestrian is just my style. Available in classic black, pink, or blue, this leather case can go with you anywhere.
I’m bad at carrying clutches because I’m usually carrying a bucket, a feed bag, an extra jacket, what have you. So I’ve been on the hunt for a fanny pack that doesn’t look like it came from the thrift store. Enter the Equestrian Hip Bag by Free x Rein. This stunning little number is versatile and chic and will hold all your essentials while leaving your hands free for barn chores.
Good on bags, but seeking a belt with both fashion and function? Look no further than Clever With Leather. In a snap, this beautiful handmade Kentucky Country Belt converts into an emergency lead rope, leash, trailer tie – the possibilities are endless. You’ll never leave home without a belt again. Pony Club would be proud.
Yesteryear, ladies' gloves were delicate silk and impossible-to-keep-clean colors like white and pastel. But I’m a horse girl. I need gloves that are durable and grippy. The Samshield V2 Gloves in a gorgeous matte grey are perfect for schooling or an off-season clinic. They also come in ring-ready black and brown, and I’m pretty sure multiple pairs would easily fit in a holiday stocking.
When it comes to hands, we all know the equestrian’s struggle (it's rough, pun intended). One Christmas my grandmother reached over, took my hand in hers, looked at me with those loving eyes and said flatly, “You do not have soft hands.” No, Grandmother, I don’t. But maybe with the help of Sentuals Grapefruit Turmeric Hand Repair Cream, I could.
I love hosting (and attending) dinner parties with friends, but when you’ve got a gaggle of gal pals floating between the kitchen, couch, and porch, misplacing or flat out walking away from their drinks along the way, you’ll never find anything more handy than washable Wine Glass Markers. Label each glass as you pour preferred libations and Caroline won’t keep stealing Lizzy's recently refilled bev (or maybe she will – hard to say).
How many times have you been away from home and bought a bottle of wine to enjoy after a long day, only to realize you don’t have a bottle opener? Well, now you do. And it’s in your tack trunk. Behold! The equestrian’s new best friend and proverbial Swiss Army knife – Noble Outfitter’s Wine Down Hoof Pick.
Speaking of useful tools (and stepping back from the quickly unraveling wine theme), one of the best stocking stuffers I’ve ever received was a tire pressure gauge that is also a multi-functional tool for emergencies. There are a ton of different ones out there, but this 5-in-1 tool by Fosman is the exact one I have. This is a digital tire pressure gauge, seatbelt cutter, window breaker, flashlight, and red LED all rolled into one life-saving gadget, perfect for the equestrian constantly on the go.
I was born on the coldest day of the year in New England, and there’s no mistaking that I’m a winter baby. My closet is mostly an array of cool color tones that I love to layer. My go-to winter wardrobe is the the perfect sweater/vest combo with a cozy knit scarf, like the Wanderer Scarf by Alexa Fairchild.
Don’t forget your toque! For practical purposes (heat escapes from the top your head) and to pull the whole ensemble together. Don’t skimp on quality, go for cashmere. The Josa Cashmere Toque by Asmar Equestrian or Miasuki Pansy Hat will be your new winter weather staple.
Simply can’t decide on which accessories are the perfect fit? Santa can’t go wrong with a gift card to NF.shop, available from $100 to $1000 (exactly how good were you this year?).
Feature image by Alli Addison.
Written by Hossein Maleki
Having grown up on horseback, Leslie Threlkeld, Managing Editor at NOËLLE FLOYD, treasures her career in the equestrian industry as a writer, photographer, and eventing technical delegate. Leslie thrives on frequent travel but never tires of returning home to the serene mountains of North Carolina.