There’s always something going on here, whether it’s with me or with my amazing equestrian and rural business clients… so this is the area you’ll find their (and my!) business news.

News doesn’t always have to be a ground-breaking thing. Actually, this is something I always talk about when teaching people how to write press releases for their equestrian or rural business. News is something that’s new or newsworthy. This can be something you feel is small but, actually, it really isn’t. You might feel that a product you’ve just launched isn’t worthy of being shouted about. Or maybe because you’ve been working on it for so long it doesn’t feel all the new to you! The thing is, if you customers don’t know about it, it’s news!

Of course, HUGE news is also a very exciting thing to share, and you’ll find big game changing news in this category too!

How to… dress for a TEDx talk… well, what I’m doing anyway!

How to dress for a TEDx talkAs you may have seen in a previous post, I’m a speaker at TEDx Malvern later this month. I’m completely honoured and excited to have been asked and actually can’t wait to give my talk. I mean, any form of public speaking, especially something like TEDx, does get the heart pumping a bit faster and give the tummy butterflies a work out, but I really am excited about it.

Why does how to dress for a TEDx talk matter?

Bizarrely, the bit that has caused me the most ‘discomfort’ is what I am planning to wear. I know. Does it even matter? Well, yes, the more I have delved into this area, the more I really believe it does. So much so, that I have ‘recruited’ a ‘Glam Squad’ to help me dress for my TEDx talk, and will be putting together a fair amount of content around the subject. Yes, I’ll be looking at how to dress for a TEDx talk, but I’m hoping that the insight that I can produce (well, the Glam Squad can!) will help anyone who is planning to do something that’s a bit more public than they’re used to. If it’s public speaking, attending an event, meeting new people, networking – whatever, what you wear matters. But not just on a superficial level. It’s actually about the way it makes you feel, and that’s something I am really focusing on for my TEDx talk, and one of the things that has been at the front on my mind when deciding how to dress for my TEDx talk.

Meet the ‘Glam Squad’

I titled our Facebook Messenger chat ‘Glam Squad’ and it’s stuck (for me anyway!!) but I wanted to introduce you to two ladies who have been a massive massive help in helping me put together outfit ideas. The first is Karen McConnell (of KA Equestrian and Karen & Clan), and the second is Sophie Callahan (of, well, Sophie Callahan!).

About Karen 

Karen is a mum of two, she’s horsey, she has a dog, she’s a Toggi blogger and has really exceptional taste in clothes. Both of Karen’s blogs show this. Her equestrian style is best showcased through KA Equestrian, and the clothes she wears when not on the yard are showcased through her lifestyle blog, Karen & Clan. Karen’s style, for me at least, ticks a lot of boxes. It always looks well thought through and everything just works. The clothing is practical (OK, unless she’s off out somewhere swanky, then it’s full on glamour!) and by that I mean she can actually walk, play with the kids and move about when wearing it. I see many, many gorgeous outfits and clothes on my travels but, for me, it has to be practical. I always like to feel that I can be ‘useful’ if needed, and if I’m wearing something I can barely move it, I’ll struggle to drive, let alone anything else! Comfort is a word that makes me think of pyjamas and hoodies, but when I say comfortable here, I mean it as an extension of the above. Comfort is a big deal in my world. If I wear a top that’s an inch too short, I will spend the whole time pulling it down. The same applies with every other item of clothing too – I’ll fiddle and faff with it constantly. This isn’t sit on the sofa comfort, it’s more a smart comfort. I feel Karen does this so well.

About Sophie

Sophie is an absolute diamond too, and I’ve always loved the way she dresses. She’s best known for her photography – well, I say best known, she’s also very well known as an equestrian and country lifestyle blogger and vlogger!

There are many similarities between Sophie and Karen’s overall style vibe in many ways – practical as well as pretty. Sophie tends to wear jeans a lot (same as me!) and she has curves that she freely admits/blogs about. Since having my children, I’m more conscious then ever about certain areas, mainly my stomach, so having Sophie’s knowledge of how to dress curves well is a huge help to me. If you saw Sophie’s blog last year about what she was wearing for HOYS, you’ll find out a lot more about her style, and you’ll see why I wanted her as part of the Glam Squad too.

Both these ladies have been a HUGE help. They have dealt with me sending pics of things I’ve seen and liked at various times of the day and night, chatted through colours and ideas, accepted my many (many) quirks and been very accepting on the areas I want to hide/not draw attention to. I am going to go into this in more detail in the blogs to follow. And I see the irony that I am quite literally highlighting the areas I want to hide, but what I’ve come to realise is that we all have these quirks. I think both Karen and Sophie’s figures are fab- enviable in fact – but both have areas that they’re not as confident about. And they address this by being careful about the clothing that they pick. I tend to huff and puff, get cross about it all and revert to something that has tent like qualities. Sure, this hides a lot of issues, but creates another in that it increases my overall mass by a huge amount. Which is not what anyone really wants to do!

What was the brief?

I spoke to Sophie and Karen about helping me when I first found out about the talk. They’re both clients and friends and I respect their opinion. We also have a relationship that means they can tell me that I’m wrong and be completely honest. And that’s what I need. I need people whose opinion I trust and I can be honest with. Because I have pretty strong opinions too.

I’m not sure either of them realised just how ‘quirky’ I could be when it comes to what I wear.

So, the TEDx talk will be filmed, I’ll be speaking against a black background, and it will be in front of an audience of people, on a stage. That’s the easy bit.

As for how to dress for the TEDx talk… the girls had some criteria to work with…

  • I’m tall – 6ft tall in fact, and although this is something I clearly can not change, it’s not something I’m hugely comfortable with. Some styles and cuts elongate and make you look taller, that was something to avoid.
  • My stomach – yep – I’m not sure I was that thrilled with my whole stomach area before, but after having twins it’s certainly not an area I’m very pleased with. OK, that sounds harsh, it looked after two tiny humans for nine months, so I can’t be too cross at it, but it’s not toned or flat. Again, I’m OK with this day to day, but I wouldn’t want anything to particularly draw attention to this area. So they had to contend with that too.
  • I’m pale. I have pale skin, darkish hair, and I am not confident when it comes to the application of make up. So the colours picked need to work with what I affectionately refer to as a ‘pasty’ complexion.
  • Jeans. I made it very clear from very early on that I was planning to wear jeans. I can do dresses (just!), I can do skirts, but I am 100% more confident if I’m wearing jeans. Maybe it’s something to do with being useful? They’re dark and smart and skinny in appearance. But they were pretty much a non negotiable.

See, I bet you thought the ladies had an easy time, didn’t you?

I’ll be creating a variety of different content over the next few weeks to show you how I’m dressing for my TEDx talk and why, some of the lovely products I’ve borrowed, what I’ve bought and more. I have some gorgeous pieces to show you and I think you’ll love them too. So here’s to our little journey about how to dress for a TEDx talk!

Why I love… why the new blog series

Why I love... my new blog seriesI’ve been trying to think of a way to share with you the numerous gems I come across in my travels… because I am lucky to find a lot. This might be a book (and I read a lot), or a podcast, or a gorgeous bit of stationary or maybe something even more special in terms of a stunning or clever product that I’ve bought, been given or have helped to promote. I promise that everything in the ‘why I love’ series will be something that I genuinely love. I do get to see a lot of lovely products in my equestrian and country PR and marketing role for a couple of key brands, and even more in my business coach role, but I want to give you my take on some of my top finds in this blog series. It might seem self indulgent and that really isn’t the intention. And I’ll explain my reasoning…

Why I want to share what I find with you

You know those people who find something extraordinary and then hide or keep it to themselves? One of my children is currently going through this phase with small rocks and acorns. You see his face light up when he uncovers a dirt encrusted rock and he’s delighted… and then you see the sneaky little devil go and stash it in the seat of his push along quad thingy or the hole that the parasol fits down on his sandpit. Why? Because he’s not too keen on me, his Dad or his brother touching, looking at or finding out about his ‘precious’. He’s really into rocks. Anyway, I’m pleased to say that the things I get excited about are ever so slightly more useful that rocks or acorns (well, to adult humans anyway), and I like to share. If it’s a resource I have found that has helped me learn something, I want to share it with people I think will benefit. If it’s a lovely ‘thing’, well, I just like to share the knowledge of things I have found, bought and adore with people I think will love them too. And if it’s a client product that’s jaw droppingly gorgeous, well, I really, really want to tell people about that. I know it’s sad cliche and everyone says it, but that thing about raising others up and helping them progress and improve? Yeah. I’m all in on that score. And I also really like it when people tell me about brilliant things that they have found that  they think I might like. Recommendation for someone you know and trust is a big thing for me, so I am extending that to you. Equally, I would LOVE to hear about things you recommend. I am planning to cover one ‘thing’ in each post, and anything connected to that thing that you would recommend would be brilliant.

Will be be all business things?

Nope. There will be a good amount of things I love that are connected to business. I have a vice for business books and have a collection that could rival Amazon, and there are lots of other lovely business-y things I do like from Apps and software to podcasts and other businesses… but I also love well made products with a story, brands with a heart and the brilliant people behind them. I find the detail and design of some products completely amazing and I find it equally gutting when no one knows the story behind why something is as it is. So I have adopted the role for the things I love. To share with you why they’re special and why I love them.

So, that’s it – the reason behind the ‘why I love…’ series. And if you have something you think I’ll love, or know of something you think it right up my street or could be of benefit to my clients, friends, Small & Supercharged VIPers and more, Well, I would love to hear from you.

Stay tuned for the first one next week… I just thought giving you an explanation to the thought process was a good idea. I’ve been struggling with the Monday blog theme for a while now, but I am hoping that this ticks all the boxes. Here’s to ‘why I love’. I hope you love it too.

It’s a Burghley Horse Trials Must-See!

Annabel Brocks Quilted black Gilet With Natural Collar fIf you follow me on social media, you may have seen the short videos I have been putting out this week with my must-sees at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials. In case you missed it, here are some of my top picks… in alphabetical order…

Annabel Brocks– whether you’re looking for luxurious clothes for autumn/winter or fabulous products for some winter sun, Annabel Brocks (in the Lifestyle Pavilion) is a must see. I adore the faux fur head warmers and am kind of looking forward to the winter and when I can wear them again! In addition you’ll find capes made using tweeds, faux suede gilets, kaftans, ponchos and even sun hats! Definitely add them to your list!

Butler Stewart – for tailored tweed, make sure you check out Butler Stewart. For ladies and gents there are off the peg garments as well as Made to Order and the new Made to Measure collection (the latter being launched at Burghley). And if you saw Oliver Townend at the trot on Wednesday, you will have already seen some Butler Stewart in action…

Dogs & Co – Melanie and the team are LOVELY, but more than this, the products are exceptional. I regularly rave about the UniWalker (it’s been a favourite too, but I call it by its old name, the Figure Of Eight), but the rolled leather collars and the brightly colours microfibre ones have also really caught my eye…

Fairfax & Favor – yeah – I love them. I have my eyes on a pair of Explorers as my next purchase but give the Reginas, Drivers and Windsor bag my hearty seal of approval. At the start of Burghley, Fairfax & Favor launched the new Electra velvet Chelsea Boots… and don’t forget the Amiras. The over the knee beauties.

Hiho Silver – for all your equestrian and country jewellery needs, obviously! At the start of Burghley, Hiho launched a new 4 Star solid gold bead with diamonds that fits on the foxtail and Cherry Roller Bangle. The company has also released a special Burghley charm and some other stunning sterling silver, solid gold and gold vermeil pieces. So go and see them.

Lula Bo – I found out about Lula Bo through the lovely Emily and Inkpot & Press… and then drooled over the products. At Burghley, in addition to all of Lula Bo’s other carefully selected products, Clare Shaw’s scarves will be on sale. And they are lovely.

Mackenzie & George – THE place to go for your belt and fedora needs! Mackenzie & George’s Chester Belt was my favourite in a recent vlog, and after seeing Imogen Murray in a felt fedora and feather pin from M&G at the trot up on Wednesday, I want one more than ever now! In addition, Mackenzie & George offers a personalisation service, so you can have your belt or clutch bag personalised with foil or just a simple debossed finish. LOVELY!

Noble Outfitters – a brand I’ve long admired – will be unveiling the new autumn/winter collection. With rich autumnal shades to complement any skin tone, technical prowess for busy people and clever touches too, Noble Outfitters is somewhere I would spend a bit of time!

Rudds Wellies – yep – we all need them – and Rudds Wellies are lovely. They’re made with a special rubber to give them a 12 month no split guarantee, have a super comfy lining, stirrup friendly soles and lots of other features too. You can find them in Rural Craft, which is also where you’ll find Mackenzie & George.

Teddy Edward – since I spoke to Stephen, founder of the brand, for my ‘a few minutes with‘ feature, I have become a teeny bit obsessed with the company’s range of British made products. Combining classic designs that are easy and flattering (amen!) to wear with Great British manufacture, I’m ever so slightly obsessed.

 

If you’re going to Burghley, there’s a chance to win some GORGEOUS Hiho Silver jewellery by taking a selfie, posting it on your Instagram and tagging with #HihoStyleSpotter, created with the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials, Hiho Silver AND judged by Hiho Silver ambassador Sophie Callahan. Actually, she’s written a a blog all about it here!

Business tips and the chance to win goodies! Sign up to my newsletter

Newsletter subscriber goody boxI know, I know – my inbox gets bombarded with newsletters too, but I promise you that this is a good one. OK. I might be a bit biased, but I will do my very, very best to make sure it provides you with genuinely useful information that you can use to improve your business if you choose to sign up and join the fun. AND, each month, I’ll be sending one newsletter subscriber a box of goodies that I have picked. Interested? You can sign up here.

What’s in the newsletter?

I’ve had my newsletter on the go for a while, but I was very aware that people don’t want to receive ‘crap’ in their inboxes, so I lost my way with it. I then started my 40 day blogging challenge and the response was amazing. People loved the blogs, I know that they have directly helped some people with their businesses, and I was getting lovely feedback. I went through a phase of publishing a blog a day for 40 days, which was great, if not a bit exhausting, and I know that people who really loved them will, no doubt, have missed a few. So I thought, let’s keep this simple, let’s use the newsletter to promote three blogs from the week with info about what’s in each, and let’s add a video on too – because everyone knows I like a good video. And I’ve also added a client shout out as I have so many lovely clients achieving great things, so I wanted to mention them. I decided to just keep it simple, short, easy to read, interesting and useful. And I really hope you think it is. Convinced? You can sign up here.

And what about this box of goodies?!

I regularly talk about good books I’ve read, things I’ve learnt and I am a stationery addict, so I thought that what I would do, as a thank you for agreeing to receive my newsletter and being part of my community, is bundle up some best finds each month and send them to one newsletter subscriber. It’s as simple as that really. I’ll announce the winner on my Facebook page each month, and one lucky subscriber will receive a box of things that I love and/or have found useful. I’m keen to grow my subscriber list and, of course, retain the people on my list, and while I know that content is key and will be a big focus (of course!), who doesn’t love the idea of winning something lovely? No one. So that’s what I’m doing it!

Would you like to sign up?

All you need to do is click here and fill in the form, or if you’re rather, just email me here explaining you’d like to be added to my list and I’ll do it. And if you think any of your friends might like to receive it, please send them a link to this blog, the sign up form or ask them to drop me an email and I’ll add them. I’d be really grateful.

Sign up for my newsletter here.

Are you small and supercharged? You’ll want to read this (NB – it’s small business…)

Are you small & supercharged?The irony of starting a Facebook group with the word ‘small’ in the title has not been lost on me. At 6ft 1, I’m far from small! However the name, Small & Supercharged (which took a lot of thought to get to) reflects the lovely small business owners that we have the pleasure of dealing with each day. Their businesses maybe small in size, but their ambition, their focus and their dreams aren’t – hence the supercharged bit. It makes sense, now, doesn’t it?

Here, we’re (and I say we because although it’s mostly ‘me’, I work with a number of talented people who have expertise in certain areas, like video production, SEO, etc) all about helping small businesses promote themselves well, without having to sell any limbs or organs to do it. Advertising in printed media can be seriously expensive and, whilst is can work, the investment needed to place even a small ad in some of the more popular titles will wipe out an ad budget.  In one hit. Honestly. HOWEVER, don’t worry. Before you put your first born on eBay (do not do this…it’s an amusing comment and not a suggestion!), you need to be aware of everything else that’s available to you – the numerous opportunities that are at your fingertips for little or not cost that can generate as good, if not better, results. Honest. Definitely have a look at the ‘what we do’ section on the site for more about that…anyway…

So, we love small businesses. We’re all about helping them get out there. And that’s why the Small & Supercharged Facebook group came to be. This little corner of the internet, well, of Facebook, is there to help inspire, motivate and educate. The plan for the group is to provide a ‘safe’ space (as it’s a closed group!) to learn, to form real connections, to push comfort zones (we’re putting out challenges – oh yes, this isn’t your average group!) to enjoy. In the first few hours of starting a group, one small business owner ventured onto Facebook Live for the first time (actually, it was video for the first time) despite being terrified, and someone connected in a way that led to a sale. In a few hours.

As any school teacher will tell you, there have to be rules. But they’re simple. We don’t like SPAM and ads (who needs more of those clogging up their timeline, right?), but if you have news and exciting stuff to share, you for it! We don’t like unpleasantness and it just won’t be tolerated. There’s no need. And content posted inside the group shouldn’t be shared out of it as it’s a closed group and, therefore, it was not posted with the thought that it would be shared. It sounds like a dictatorship and it really isn’t, but ‘rules make games fun’ and all that.

So, if you’re a small business going places, if you want to improve what you do and take your business to the next level, why not join the group? Taking part in the random challenges set and just being part of our Small & Supercharged adventure could be really, really good for you and your business, just click here and request to join!

One to one coaching!

We’re very excited to announce the launch of a new service here at RFPR, and that’s a one to one coaching package. Well, the title is a work in progress, but let me explain…

We all know that businesses need to be promoted in order to get work, earn money and so on. You could have the best product in the world, but if no one knows about it, it’ll never do well. Simple. Now, each week, people contact the Facebook page, or send emails, asking about PR, marketing and social media support for their equestrian and country business. Many of these are start ups who have time but not necessarily the finance to support a PR package. Actually, some aren’t at the stage where they’d necessarily be able to fully utilise a PR package. But they know they need help to get them to the next level. To help focus them and to come up with a plan. And that’s exactly what the new service does. It’s split into three parts – there’s a 20 minute ‘Nice to meet you’ chat, where we discuss objectives; then an hour chat where we look at how to achieve your business goals; and then there’s a 20 minute review that allows us to look at what has been accomplished and adjust anything needed.

This service works for all sizes of business. Yes, it’s great for small businesses who need a leg up and a bit of guidance from someone in the know, but it’s also ideal for larger businesses who want to brainstorm an idea with a PR and marketing person, or plan a product launch – the list goes on!

Due to regular clients, there’s only a limited number of ‘coaching’ slots available each month, so if you’re interested in working together in this way, to help improve your equestrian business or polish your PR and marketing, just contact me.

Have a look at our lovely Youtube Channel!

Have you seen our Youtube Channel? It’s a work in progress (what isn’t?!), but we have a good number of videos on the page now, and plenty more in the pipeline, so please subscribe and stay up to date with RFPR. The videos are packed with small business tips.

On the channel you’ll find lots of different things – plenty of marketing and PR, marketing, social media and even video tips. In addition, due to our extensive experience in equestrian PR and marketing, you’ll also find videos on rider sponsorship dos and don’ts for riders and businesses, information on equestrian events such as BETA International and how to survive a horse trials. The list really does go on. If you’re interested in equestrian PR, marketing and social media, and how to promote your equestrian business in a cost effective way, it’s definitely worth a look. Equally, if you’re in the country and rural sector, or if you’re a small business in a completely unrelated sector going places, you’ll learn lots from the hints and tips provided as many apply to all businesses.

And, if you want to take your learning a step further, why not come on over and become part of the Small & Supercharged community? This group combines small businesses from all industries and shares ideas, advice, goals and a whole lot more. It’s supportive, fun and genuine connections and business has already been done as a direct result of the group. How good is that? Come on over and join us if you’d like to take your small business to the next level.

Here’s the link to the Youtube channel- enjoy!

Happy New Year!

It seems like forever since I’ve blogged on my own site…and looking at the date of my last post, that’s very much the case! The truth is that I’ve been so busy working with my clients across various media that my own ‘stuff’ seems to have taken a bit of backseat – and for those snippets of news I want to share, I write on my Facebook page…so if you’d like to hear what’s going on with my lovely bunch of clients, the Rhea Freeman PR Facebook page is your best bet! I’m hoping and planning to do more blogs this year, but as they’re usually more in-depth and ramble on (!), they take a wee bit more time! Hope to see you on the RFPR Facebook page!

I would, however, like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very happy, healthy and successful 2016. I do think that people put too much focus on the ‘new year, new you’ idea. If you want to change, then just crack on! If you’re looking to improve your business, spread your message, increase your profits, get more people talking about you and what you do, don’t let a silly date stop you or, worse still, put so much pressure on you that you set yourself up for a fall and become completely demoralised! If you want to have a booming business by the end of the year, then don’t wait to start promoting yourself, and don’t set yourself huge goals without thinking how you’re actually going to achieve them. It’s just depressing if you don’t have a vague plan! You don’t need to spend the national debt on ads, you can start small by getting yourself organised on social media, filming yourself or your product and posting these clips, getting a tried and tested in a magazine. Setting little, achievable goals is more do-able, a hell of a lot easier, and forms a great foundation to build a more joined up campaign. So, if this New Year is all about building yourself a better, bigger business, remember that there are very few overnight successes…but there are many perceived overnight success stories that have come from years of hard work!

‘What’s the best bit of your job?’

I was lucky enough to be invited to give a talk to a group of students about PR, marketing and social media a couple of weeks ago. It’s always nice to talk to the industry’s future movers and shakers, and despite showing them the new Money Supermarket advert to illustrate a point, I think it all went rather well.

I like my talks or lectures to have an interactive quality, because I always find that I get the most out of events I go to if I can get involved in someway, even if it’s just asking a question. I always want the people I’m chatting away to to get something really useful out of what I’m telling them (even if it is just the link to a crazy advert on the TV), and I feel that giving people the chance to interact and comment is a good way to do this. At the end of my lecture, I asked: ‘Ok, does anyone have any questions about what I’ve been talking about?’. There was silence. I don’t really like silence. ‘Anyone?!’ I said. One person said: ‘well, actually, I have a question about you – what’s the best bit of your job?’. I wasn’t really expecting that as a question, so started the answer with my obligatory ‘ummmmmm’…

There’s a time and a place to think about this, and probably in front of a group of students in a university lecture room isn’t either, but as I was asked, well, I was in the thick of it. The thing is, it’s actually a very difficult question for me to answer. There are LOTS of aspects of the job I enjoy. I love working with likeminded, pro active people. I love looking at new products and ooing and cooing, giving opinions and contributing towards the design. I like the satisfaction of a job well done. I like the buzz I get when I can help people achieve their goals. These are all true…but they’re all a bit expected, aren’t they? I thought a bit more, and do you know what I think the bit I most enjoy is? It’s seeing people that I work with do well. It’s seeing a campaign work well. It’s seeing a great product fly off the shelves. It’s seeing a deserving company get the recognition it should from appreciative emails or even making it through to finalist stage in a prestigious awards…or better still, winning. And the best bit for me is helping them to achieve this. Even in a small way. PR people should help to highlight the best bits of a business…but there has to be a good business there at the start!

I’m lucky in that I work for a number of companies who tick all the boxes above, who make working with them a joy. One of these companies is Trilanco. Trilanco is the UK’s largest animal health and equine wholesaler, and twice winner of the BETA Trade Supplier of the Year Award. Most recently, they’ve made it through finalist stage in two categories of the Red Rose Awards, an awards set up to celebrate Lancashire businesses. Trilanco is modest. It doesn’t thrust its successes in the faces of others…I sometimes think that without me saying ‘we really should tell someone about this’ that they’d keep more things quiet. This isn’t a criticism at all, on the contrary, in my eyes it proves more than ever their worthiness. The team don’t sit there, pat themselves on the back and pop their feet up to enjoy the glow of their latest achievement. They smile and just crack on with further improvements in the quest to be bigger and better than they are. See, that’s something to be proud of, and being part of something like this is the best bit of my job.

Find out more about Trilanco here.

It’s worth waiting for…made to measure bridlework that’s ‘worth it’!

As you may know, I work with a number of lovely companies who make entirely brilliant products…and the one that I’m going to talk about today is Kate Negus Saddlery. See, Kate Negus Saddlery isn’t a normal saddlery. First of all, it’s entirely British, which is something that’s not common nowadays. Julia (KN’s MD), designs the products in Wiltshire, the leather is tanned in Yorkshire and the beautiful new bridles, breastplates and leather accessories are made in Walsall. At Kate Negus Saddlery you can buy ANY piece on its own. You want a keeper? That’s fine. How about a new clip for your breastplate? Yep…that’s fine too. You name it. The company is known for being very accommodating to all its customers, and the new range of nosebands really pushes this point. See, Julia is excellent at listening to what her customers want and acting on this. But as anyone who’s in business will know, just because one person wants something doesn’t mean that the rest of the population will too. Sadly. What do you do with these people? Well, you do your best to help them is what. One of Kate Negus’s unique selling points is that it can make products to order…so if you’re looking for something a bit random, or you need an ‘odd’ size, Kate Negus is the place to come.

One of the new made-to-order nosebands, the Elastic Grackle.

We got chatting about made to order products, you know, the type people would have to wait for…would it work? When people need a new item, do they want it as soon as possible and time is the only factor? The answer is actually no. We decided to ask Kate Negus Saddlery’s Facebook fans what they thought – the question was, would they wait three weeks for a made to order item. The answer was an overwhelming yes. And do you know why? It’s the quality. Kate Negus’s leatherwork is beautiful. It’s bespoke because you choose the size and style of all the parts when you order. With correct care, it’ll last years and years and years…and then some. Super cob Marilyn has a beautiful Leather Lined Padded International Flash with Diamante Browband and X-Suregrip Reins and it’s really out of this world. Quality and service are two aspects of the brand that are always emphasised because they’re second to none. But what’s really, really great is that Kate Negus’s loyal fans really get that too. And by ‘get’, I mean understand. They’re happy to wait because they know that what’s coming is worth waiting for. They know that it’s going to fit their horse perfectly. They know that it will get to them in a timely fashion. They know that they can adjust bits and have their new bit of kit exactly how they want it.

In a world where everything is required now if not sooner, it’s lovely and reassuring to know that the horsey lot at least still appreciate quality.

Find out more about Kate Negus Saddlery here.