The beautiful Central Park Horse Show last September heralded the return of equestrian sport to New York City. But travel south on Madison Avenue to 24th Street and you’ll find Manhattan Saddlery, its cavernous showroom steeped in over 100 years of history and a longstanding equestrian outpost in this modern metropolis of millions.
If the distinctive carousel horse in the window could talk, it would tell not only the tales of horsemen of a bygone era, but also a family story of hope, loss, and promise.
Originally opened in 1912 as Miller’s Harness Company, the shop peddled tack and saddles to New York equestrians like the Kennedy and Rockefeller families and also operated a popular mail order catalog for almost 80 years. (Nostalgists will remember Miller’s classic horse sweaters.) Along with H. Kauffman & Sons, Miller’s made the stretch of 24th Street between Lexington and Park Avenues the city’s premiere equestrian destination for most of the 1900s.
Change, though, is always inevitable and in the 1990’s Miller’s was sold and the shop rebranded as Copperfield’s. Enter June Tsang, a mother of two boys who insisted her entire family take riding lessons as a way to connect with her autistic son. June was a passionate equestrian and, having been a long time Miller’s customer, purchased the shop and christened it Manhattan Saddlery.
You guys!! It’s been such a pleasure to hear the enthusiastic response from readers who have seen new Dappled Grey blog posts published over the last several months. And now… I’ve got even more exciting news to share!
If you are not already familiar with them, The Scout Guide is a collection of locally-focused publications that feature independently-owned businesses, artists, entrepreneurs, craftsmen, and events. TSG Equestrian is the first national book to be added to Scout’s 50+ local city guide network and will focus on highlighting the very best of the equestrian lifestyle.
In the network of TSG editors, I’m joining a wonderful team that shares my passion for scouting the best finds and supporting independently-owned businesses. Of course, Dappled Grey will also still exist as a place for me to talk about equestrian trends and items we all covet.
So, please, you are officially invited to join me not just here on Dappled Grey but as part of TSG Equestrian too! I promise it will be beautiful, inspiring, and fun! And if you’d like to learn more about being involved, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
The new year is the perfect time to share some exciting new styles from a few of my favorite designers, starting with the stunning MFH Reynard shirt from designer Kimberly McConnell’s Middy ‘n Me collection. Kimberly is a genius with prints and creates this impeccably tailored collection of structured and crisp shirts for riding and resort.
This shirt could be styled in a number of ways, letting the print take front and center by pairing with slim black leggings and the new Katharine Page ballet flats (shhh! still on the down low!) or nodding to the dapper fox’s traditional roots with jods or tweed. See all the new styles here.
Long time DG fans will remember this fabulous chair that reader Kristen McDonald created using her custom-designed dappled grey textile. Well, she’s back, this time with handmade crepe de chine silk infinity scarves sold under her new Nice Filly label.
Style it down with a beachy tee (above) or dress it up for urban equestrian chic – these scarves would make a smashing holiday gift for any equestrian on your list.
Available backed in either seafoam green or blushing pink.
There’s nothing like Fall and a new crop of boots to bring an equestrian style blogger out of hibernation!
When family-owned (since 1870!) Australian boot maker Blundstone reached out to me with their new styles, I knew I had to share them with Dappled Grey’s readers.
I’ve long appreciated Blundstone boots for their comfort and versatility. My black chisel-toe Blundstones have seen literally hundreds of miles of grooming, handwalking, riding, and everything else in between.
On top of being a great all around boot, Blundstones are a favorite because they always manage to look cool too – even better perhaps after acquiring the patina of daily wear. Which is why it’s so exciting that they’ve released some very stylish variations on their iconic elastic-sided chelsea boot.
Because I’m a fan of the chisel toe style, the Rustic Brown Brogue boot (above) is my personal favorite among the new styles, but only by a slim margin because Blundstone also answered my longstanding wish for a taller work boot with the Rancher style (also in Rustic Brown). The olive green and orange elastic styles put a new spin on the classic Stout Brown Blundstone and for fans of alt-equestrian style there is now a Grey and Steel Grey option too.