Show Saddles

The show saddle is designed for looking good rather than for working hard. These decorative saddles are for the horse show arena and are impacted by current fashion trends more than any of the other western saddle types. Particular styles and features come in and out of fashion, and if you want to be in the ribbons, you better know what’s in and what’s out. Nothing’s more embarrassing in the show circuit than to be caught with last year’s fashion.

Typical features of the show saddle include:

  • Ornate and deep tooling patterns
  • Silver trim on the skirts, cantle, horn, fork, and stirrups
  • Short horn and fork to avoid interference with the reins
  • Deeper skirts to show off silver and tooling
  • Seat with the balance point in the center for a proper rider position
  • Padded or suede seats for grip
  • Low cantle
  • Turned stirrups to present a proper line to the rider’s leg

Like all fashion, show saddles seem to run the gamut from the tasteful to the truly tacky. It’s up to you to police yourself.

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