Welcome To Hats Off Boutique Blog

Hello Everyone! I am Sherri Lower, owner of Hats Off Boutique.. Above is my retired advanced single driving horse Nikko.. in the dressage ring at Live Oak...On my blog you will find great tips to improving your carriage driving turnout. How to shop for appropriate clothing, How to fit a hat, Pictures of other turnouts and many more helpful hints

Friday, August 5, 2011

What To Shop For?

So if you have some time to go shopping for Carriage Driving accessories.. what should one shop for?
Let's talk about jackets... Look for jackets that are more tailored and have at least 3 buttons or a zipper up the front.  If you are a fuller bodied woman look for jackets that have princess seams.  These are seams that are set in the side back and side front.  They create a more tailored jacket and won't make you look like a box! 

Necklines.. notched collars, mandarin collars, no collars ... all are great.  The main point is to not have a huge downward plunging open neckline. 

Sleeves... make sure that the jacket sleeves are long enough.  I personally like the bottom of my sleeves to come down to where my thumb joins my hand.   This length of sleeve will allow us to move our arms and the skin between the end of sleeve and glove doesn't show! 

A scarf is a great accessory!  It helps cover up an open neckline and tie the jacket and hat together.   A scarf can be tied several different ways making the overall appearance have a  "tucked in" and "polished" look!

What to wear under the jacket...  a nice thin "dickey", camisole  or mock turtleneck.  A turtleneck rides far enough up your neck that when you tie your scarf, the skin between the jacket and turtleneck doesn't show!  Once again giving the "polished" look.

Pants... Wearing a nice pair of dress slacks that matches your apron as close as possible works well.  Dress slacks are comfortable under your apron too.

Don't forget to get a nice pair of earrings.  Keep the earring small and a "little bit"of sparkle is great.  It is an accent not an attention getter!

Happy Shopping!
Sherri - Hats Off Boutique

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Where To Shop!

For some people... This is the next worst task!  Where do we shop for clothes?  
First Stop:  In Your Closet!  You would be amazed what you will find to wear in your closet... I used to work in the corporate world.  I had alot of dress jackets from suits.. I ditched the skirts and kept the jackets.  Most of you know that I am not a fan of white shirts and vests being worn in the carriage.  If that is all you have then make it work. 
Second Stop:  Thrift stores and consignment shops... I am such a junkie when it comes to these stores..  I can spot them a mile away!  They are a great place to find bargains.  Men and women can find jackets, slacks/pants, ties  and shoes here.  Just check the clothing over for stains, snags and missing buttons...you might have to take the jacket to the cleaners before you wear it or replace the buttons but most of the time there are "diamonds in the rough" just waiting to be purchased!
Third Stop:  Department Stores... Check the clearance racks..sometimes you have to dig but I have found great buys just by digging through the racks and watching for sales.
Fourth Stop:  Ebay..  This takes a lot of patience and time.. and the disadvantage is that you can't touch it or try the garmet on before you buy it.  However, if you have time to sit at the computer, sort through pages of  garments, risk the color being what they say it is,  sleeves being long enough and the fit being close enough..Then Shop Away.. Great Bargains Await You!
Fifth Stop:  Have a jacket custom sewn. Yes, this is more expensive, but if you don't have time to shop this is a great option.  Plus, you know that the jacket will fit and look great!
Stay Tuned:  "What Style of Jacket"