Ever have one of those days where you wake up, look in the mirror, and decide you don't want to adult today? I had one of those days recently. I just didn't have it in me to be an adult. Fortuantely I work from home, so no one cared that I was in ripped, baggy jeans and an Invader Zim tee shirt that I've had since high school. When it came time for me to head to the barn for my lesson, I kept the shirt but swapped to breeches. Trainer A promptly asked 'are you wearing an Invader Zim shirt?'. Evidently I'm usually very clean cut in my presentation at the barn.
At one point, I rode at a barn where tucked in collared shirts were required for lessons. Collared shirts, usually polos, were also required for instructors when working. It seems the habit stuck. I got caught up on my laundry today and took a look at my riding wardrobe. I might as well be wearing a uniform.
Yes, yes, I have a section in my closet specifically for my riding shirts. No, I'm not a perfectionist or detail oriented at all.
The light colored shirts on the right are my office shirts. The shirts on the left are my sweatshirts. The ones I separated out in the middle are my riding shirts, and they are all collared shirts in some shade of blue, green, or purple. My breeches are all dark with contrast stitching (except the one pair of tan breeches I loathe but couldn't pass up on when on clearance for $15). For me to show up to the barn in a graphics tee with a bright green alien dog was probably a bit startling. It wasn't until I stopped and looked at my clothes that I really noticed how similar all of my riding clothes are.
I also appear to have a thing for plaids. I didn't realize this until looking at the photo. Why do I have so many plaid shirts?
It's not necessarily a bad thing to have a uniform for riding. I don't have to do any actual thinking when I dress for the barn, which is a good thing after a long day of work or before an early morning lesson. It also means every thing matches without me having to do any type of decision making.
I have the attitude that you should show up for your lesson ready to work. It shows respect for your trainer. You wear a snug shirt or tuck it in, your hair is neat, your horse is well groomed, and your tack is tidy. I typically tuck my hair under my helmet, wear gloves, and use my white saddle pads (as opposed to the saddle pad with hearts all over it). Having said that, I think I need to shake things up a bit. Get some other colors in the wardrobe, and not necessarily wear something with a collar every single ride. Theo would look stunning in some strong red and I actually look good in pink, even if I rarely wear it. I could even use more royal blue, since that's supposed to be part of my cross country colors, and soft yellow works for me. No orange, though, I draw the line there. I'm too pale for that color, it makes me look unhealthy.
Maybe, just maybe, I should start busting out the tee shirts when I ride on my own. I don't think I can unbend enough to wear a tee shirt in a lesson regularly, but what's the harm in wearing some Hello Kitty on other days? Other than to my respectability as an adult that's supposedly a responsible member of society, but who needs that?