Creature Comforts

Photo by Krystina Lynn Photography.

Our Gift Guide for the beloved equines on your list!

SHOW-STOPPING Pads
Show-stopping style is always a wise choice when it comes to gift giving and horse lovers. You will find a huge selection of cutting edge show pads, show shirts and other accoutrement at the Ranch by Design shop near Lacombe, Alberta. Luxx show pads are beautiful premium quality blankets made with 100% New Zealand wool. Oversized and just under nine pounds, these saddle pads come in a wide variety of colours and designs. $236. Online at: www.ranchbydesign.com

FOR YOUR HERD

The Equistro line of products is specifically designed to serve the needs of the equine athlete. With a range of supplements, their goal is to help your horse deal with the challenges of heavy training, frequent travelling and staying on top of the game. Use the promo code CLAY10 for savings on online purchases. www.equistro.ca

Use the promo code CLAY10 for savings on online Equistro purchases.

MAKE PAY DIRT
Not all gifts are meant to be under a tree! Put a big red bow on Conterra’s EquiGroomer-TR and watch them run (or drive) in circles with excitement! www.conterraindustries.com

EQUI-NUTRITION BOOST
Warm the bellies of your equine friends during colder days with locally-owned and operated. Equiboost Feed and Oil. Flax-based and made with zero soy products, this feed will have your furever friends feeling, looking and performing their best! $55 for a 30-day supply. Find them on Facebook @equiboost

FEELIN’ GOOD

Spread good cheer and good feels in every way, with Cavallo Pulse Therapy, based out of Cochrane, Alberta. Owner and practitioner, Keely Gibb, travels to her clients to help them feel their best. Specializing in equine bodywork and PEMF for the performance athlete. Gibb also offers massage therapy, K-Taping, myofascial release as well as stretching and mobilization services for your equine and canine companions. Find her on Facebook @cavallopulsetherapy

BARN DANCE
Why put gifts under a tree when you can put them in a barn? Make dreams come true with Affordable Barns, a company who has been building high quality barns for affordable prices for years! With base pricing starting at only $20,695, all barns come complete with finished 12×12 stalls, and many options to choose from. www.affordablebarns.com

Gifts Out of the Ordinary

Photo by BAR XP PHOTO

A unique selection of curated gifts, for the hard-to-buy-for. As it is more important than ever to shop local, many of the amazing gift ideas on this list are from local, small businesses.

HEART OF THE HOME
Unique western style area rugs that convey your western style within your home, are like artwork for the floor. Find a number of interesting shapes and designs at Cody & Sioux. Inquire for pricing. www.codyandsioux.com

FOR THEIR TUMMY
A gift that embodies the best of Alberta: solid, bold, rich, authentic, and spirited. Alberta Whisky Cakes come heat-sealed and most elegantly packaged, ready for gift giving, and with a lithographed ‘Artist Card’ promoting the work of a local emerging artist. True local spirit and taste in every sense. $40. albertawhiskycake.com

FOR THE TIME-STRAPPED RANCHER
The greatest gift you can give someone is time. Better Than Home Coin Laundry located in Okotoks, Alberta is a drop-off dry cleaner depot that caters to customers with western roots! Custom ironing and alterations for cowboys, cowgirls and cowpokes alike. They have designated machines for your pet and horse blankets, saddle pads, Navajo blankets and heavily soiled attire – perfect for those hectic days on the ranch! Leave the heavy cleaning to them. (403) 938-7788

Better Than Home Coin Laundry can handle the toughest laundry jobs, including heavy winter horse blankets.

IMPRESSIVE AMBIENCE
Just in time for the holidays, the all new ROMAL RAIN candles from Shannon Lawlor Galleries are ready for the giving! This thoughtful pairing of leather and Cuban cigars will offer you memories of the West through a luxurious scent, as the candle burns with great ambiance. Snuggle up and appreciate the sensory delight curated by one of Alberta’s foremost western virtuosos. $45-$70 www.shannonlawlor.com

THE WINE IS SO DELIGHTFUL
It may be frightful outside, but wine is always delightful! Toast your host or the ones you love most with horse themed wines this holiday season. Everyone will be trotting up to the bar for another glass of these fun and naturally festive selections of holiday cheer! Find them at your favourite local liquor purveyor.

FOR THOSE WHO HAVE EVERYTHING
Don’t know what to get the people who have everything? Memberships and subscriptions make wonderful gifts that keep on giving throughout the year and come with a host of benefits for all the people on your gift list. Alberta Equestrian Federation? Reining Alberta? American Quarter Horse Association? Subscription to Western Horse Review Magazine? Support local clubs, publications and your loved one’s passions all with one thoughtful gesture.

www.westernhorsereview.com

Gifts for Him

Photo by BAR XP PHOTO.

A wonderful collection of gift ideas for him!! For under the tree, under the saddle, in the barn or in his belly. All are amazing presents from local vendors.

OUTDOOR COVER
This Powder River Outfitters collection fleece bonded softshell jacket from Panhandle features a full zipper front, interior wind flap, adjustable cuffs and is water and wind resistant. Perfect for the man who lives in the outdoors. $139.95. www.lammles.com

Powder River Outfitters jacket from Lammle’s Western Wear.

A NIGHT OUT
A night out is a sweet surprise for anyone. Give a gift that includes great service, a spacious western atmosphere, a fantastic steak and a house-specialty mashed potato wrap. Silver Slate Steak house by Stavely, Alberta offers high fashion dining in a home-style way. Gift Certificates available at www.silverslatearena.com

A hearty meal at Silver Slate Steakhouse is exactly what he wants this year!

Sole Mates
He’ll get a kick out of a Christmas gift from Alberta Boot Company! Outfitting royalty, movie stars, athletes, public figures, and most importantly – ordinary people from all over the world! Alberta Boot Company has a wide selection of ready-made boots and can also help you create the perfect pair for your sole mate this holiday season. www.albertaboot.com

Alberta Boots carries a wide variety of boots for him.

SOLAR PROTECTION
BEX sunglasses are engineered to stay comfortably on your favourite wrangler’s face. Complementing active lifestyles, every pair is lightweight, polarized durable and designed to look great on everyone. The company understands that an active lifestyle causes normal wear and tear on the nose pads, which is why each pair of sunglasses comes with a replaceable set. bexsunglasses.com

Bex Suglasses and a wild rag by Brown Creek Wild Rags. Photo by BAR XP PHOTO.

GRAND TOPPER
The holidays just aren’t the same without a great topper, whether you choose a star, a tree and angel or a gorgeous hat from Prairie Wind Hatworks! Located in Pincher Creek, Alberta, they can make a custom hat from the band up or give a current hat a little bit of TLC. Find them on Facebook @prairiewindhatworks2018

Prairie Wind Hatworks will make the custom lid your guy is looking for.

Western-Styled Gift Guide

Our gift for you is this wonderful collection of gift ideas! As always, we are all for spreading some local cheer with amazing gifts for you and yours.

By MONIQUE NOBLE

PUT A RING IN IT
What’s a gift without a box to put it in? For a little extra western flair this holiday season, wrap your special someone’s gift in this extra special jewelry case available at Classic Rodeo Boutique (DeWinton, Alberta). It’s the store that has a little bit of everything for everyone! $250.

@classicrodeo on Facebook

TOWEL SETS
These amazing towel sets are a great way to add some western flair to any décor, a set of three towels includes one bath towel, one hand towel and one face cloth. Deliciously soft and fully washable, these medium thick towels are a quick and easy way to change up a bathroom and add a splash of on point style. Find them on Facebook at Starbound Horses and Western gifts – you won’t be disappointed in their huge selection of locally handcrafted baby blankets, jewelry, décor and more. $50 for a set. www.Starboundhorses.ca

ICING FOR HER
Add a little extra sparkle to the tree with treasures from Sweet Iron Silver located in Didsbury, Alberta. Using Canadian sourced precious metals, Shawna Whiteside handcrafts every piece with artistic western elegance. Gorgeous pre-created items are available, however if you have something more personal in mind, one-of-a-kind heritage pieces that include designs such as a family brand, meaningful designs or nicknames, or even a company logo can be lovingly rendered.  sweetiron.com

SAY WHAT
Gift your bohemian babe this Stellar military jacket emblazoned with a quote from Z. Stardust himself. No gift is ever boring when it comes from Cody & Sioux, one of our favourite local purveyors of all thing’s new west. $144.95. www.codyandsioux.com

Custom Wine Glasses
Wassailing festivities mean so much more when done with a personal touch. Customized glassware is a thoughtful and sweet way to honour your loved ones, loved ones. Award-winning Airdrie, Alberta artist and fellow horse lover Marni Koelln can produce your pets on washable glassware, tree ornaments or canvas with photorealistic detail and/or heartwarming humour. Inquire for pricing. Share your ideas with her at www.marnikoelln.com

FESTIVE CHARCUTERIE
Nothing says Christmas like Charcuterie! These amazing, locally made boards are almost too pretty to cover up with your favourite delicious delights. But who are we kidding? They will be emptied quick enough for everyone to marvel at the artistry below! Below the Bark Designs and Brand it Designs can both be found on Facebook.

TRULY UNIQUE
Looking for something that is truly special? She’ll love anything from renowned silversmith, Scott Hardy. From custom-made buckles, to jewelry, to flasks or saddle silver, Hardy has the perfect signature piece for your one of a kind. Inquire for pricing.
www.scotthardy.com

Photo by Twisted Tree Photography

STAY COZY
WILD RAGS – Wrap yourself or a loved one in the warmth of a 100% silk wild rag from Brown Creek this winter. Starting at $55
www.browncreekwildrags.com

TEE TIME
These tees and tanks from Saskatchewan entrepreneur, Prairie Girl Couture are the staple she wants this year. Designed in a variety of colours and sizes, all are super soft and comfy. $30-$40 each. prairiegirlcouture.com

Introducing WHR Boutique!

The WHR Neck Wrap in Turquoise, with black fringe is a stunning piece to add to your wardrobe.

 

It’s autumn, and staying warm and cozy outdoors is a necessity for every cowgirl who lives in Canada. However, staying warm and fashionable is now a thing, thanks in part to our newest venture – the WHR Boutique! You can check it out here.

The WHR Neck Wrap in Aqua, made from Chief Joseph Pendleton® blankets.

 

In the WHR Boutique, you’ll find an array of beautifully, hand-crafted neck wraps designed by WHR Staff and hand-made in Canada by Janine’s Custom Creations, exclusively for Western Horse Review. Crafted from real Pendleton® Blankets, or iconic Hudson’s Bay Point blankets (not labelled), or with other beautiful western blankets, these wraps are stylishly functional and look attractive with any style of outerwear.

 

The WHR Neck Wrap in Iconic Canadiana, with a red fleece inside lining and without fringe.

 

Light weight and lined with a fleece or sherpa material for comfort and warmth, they are the perfect way to give yourself more protection against the elements. With easy snap closures, they can also be worn over the shoulders or as a wrap.

The WHR wrap in Teal & Eggplant.

We think these wraps make the ultimate gift and are just in time for the chilly weather. With fringe or without, they are also the perfect way to dress up a denim jacket, or give a leather coat more of a cowgirl quality.

WHR Neck Wrap in Turquoise

The other beautiful aspect of these wraps is that when purchased, you are supporting true, local businesses. Hand-made and designed in Canada.

WHR Neck Wrap in Turquoise, with Burgundy and Tan Accents.

 

Now we have to introduce you to the talent bringing these beautiful pieces to life. Janine Stabner (of Janine’s Custom Creations), is a local Calgarian, born and raised. She has over 35 years of sewing and design experience and graduated design schools with top honors. She has worked alongside a number of top designers. In addition to this, Janine is also an official sponsor for the Calgary Stampede Royalty (Queen, and Princesses) and for The Calgary Stampede First Nations Princess. Those outfits you see on the Stampede Royalty on parade day come from Janine’s workshop – which continues to be her favorite place in the entire world. Drawing, design, creating, sewing and helping others bring their visions of design to life is what inspires her.

If you’re a fan of reality TV, you can catch Janine on October 7, on an episode of STITCHED, a fierce, television competition series that fuses jaw-dropping creations and big personalities from the world of North American fashion. The series matches wits and stitches in an epic fashion throw-down in three rounds. In every high-style-meets-high-stakes episode, four competitors face off in dramatically themed challenges with one designer eliminated each round. Facing the resident judges and a new guest judge per episode, designers create ambitious outfits inspired by unique materials and concepts under tight timelines. In the end, the top designer from each episode rises to the top with a couture-level creation that earns them the $10,000 prize.

The WHR Neck Wrap in Aqua, with Fringe.

We can’t wait to see who makes it to the final round! But for now, we are extremely proud to be affiliated with Janine’s Custom Creations in our newest venture. Stay tuned for other exciting products on the horizon of the WHR Boutique!

Try a Bit Before You Buy It!

There’s no question – top riders across the globe favour Tom Balding’s handcrafted bits and spurs. With Balding’s meticulous attention to detail, knowledge of the horse and high quality materials used to create his bits and spurs, it’s no wonder Balding’s company is a leader in the field. Fans include the National Reining Horse Association $5 Million Rider Andrea Fappani, National Cutting Horse Association Hall of Famer Phil Rapp, and National Reined Cow Horse Association Million-Dollar Rider Zane Davis, to name a few.

If you’ve ever considered purchasing a high quality bit, Tom Balding Bits & Spurs offers a wide variety of custom bit combinations. No matter what you are looking to attain from your horse’s performance, there’s a bit that will offer customized assistance. Tom Balding Bits & Spurs knows a high quality bit purchase requires the best educated decision possible; as it is an investment that will often last a lifetime. Which is why the company created the Trial Bit Service, offered to those who would like to try a mouthpiece before purchasing – to ensure they are comfortable with the function in relation to their riding style.

Photo by Jenn Webster.

Within the Trial Bit Service, clients are welcome to try up to three bits for two weeks. Additionally, the company tries to offer most combinations; however, because of the large number of possible combinations, clients may have to try a bit with a similar shank to the one requested. The only out of pocket expense you may incur are the shipping costs. For more information about this unique service, check out the Trial Bit website page here.

There are also multiple resources on the Tom Balding Bits & Spurs website available to help you select a mouthpiece and shank combination you might like to try. They include:

•  The Tom Balding blog.
•  The online catalog.
• The bit creator.
Sample buy-it-now-options.
Endorsements.

 

When you are ready to request your trial bits give Tom Balding Bits & Spurs a call or message them with the desired mouthpiece and shank combinations. They look forward to getting you into the right bit for you and your horse. Request your trial bits today!

Give Tom Balding Bits & Spurs a call at 307.672.8459 or visit them online at: www.tombalding.com

 

Mother’s Day Gift Ideas

Happy Mother’s Day!

 

BY ESTEBAN ADROGUE

With Mother’s Day just around the corner, Western Horse Review wanted to give you a hand selecting the right gift for the most important woman in your life. If you need a last minute gift idea, here are a selection of our favorite items, available online now. Show Mom how much she means to you with these great ideas!

Who doesn’t love a pair of new boots? These Aztec, All-Around Square Toe Boots, from Noble Outfitters, are perfect for the Mom on the go! With a tough, leather exterior and an interior with lightweight Physio Outsole, designed for ultimate comfort, they are perfect for the woman who’s always on the move.

$239. Check out: Noble Outfitters.

With all the hard work she does, the least you can do is ensure Mom’s horse is comfortable. “The Rancher” 5 Star Saddle Pad is the ideal gift! Designed for all those ropers and ranchers out there, this super thick 1-1/8” wool pad eliminates double padding and reduces cinching, excellent for long trial rides! Not a Roper or a Rancher? Not to worry! Visit the  – 5 Star Equine Products website for many other saddle pad options and disciplines to find the perfect gift for Mom. $263.95.

What defines a mother is the love and commitment she had for her children, whether they have two or four legs! Maybe it’s time to treat yourself by treating that 1,500lbs, lovable goof in your life with a brand new “Mesh Sheet” from Back On Track. Their amazing Welltex fabric, reflects the horse’s own natural body warmth creating a soothing thermal warmth – the horse will not get over heated, but the sheet allows sweating to relieve and loosen inflamed or sore muscles. It also helps increase blood circulation and speeds muscle recovery. It’s the closest thing to a good, old fashioned bear hug for your furry creature! Starting at $199.

This beautiful dark leather bridle with extensive silver buckles, conchos and accents is designed for the Cowgirl within you! Make Mom’s horse look fantastic – and by extension, you look fantastic – with this piece from HB Leather.

Complete Mom’s outfit with beautiful hand-made belts, bracelets and accessories from Noble Outfitters offers many mix-n-match options such as the Aztec bracelet and belt. Why not top it off with an Ombre headband? Perfect for those cold days in which she wants to ride and still look great! (Even though Mom always looks great, right?) $22.95-$69.99.

Finish Mom’s special day by treating her to an amazing culinary experience. Gaucho Brazilian BBQ is a one of a kind Brazilian Barbecue. Experience the original taste of Churrasco, an authentic barbecue style made famous by Gauchos – the cowboys of South America. Want to become the best husband ever? Obtain a gift certificate from Gauchos, offer to take care of the kids, and let her enjoy a night to herself with her friends instead! (If you are lucky enough, she might even brag about how good of a man you are!)
Located in Calgary and Canmore. To make a reservation or for more information visit Gaucho Brazilian BBQ online.

A Western Valentine

Horses-love-greeting

February 14. The annual romantic holiday. Did you forget? If so, fear not! We have some heart-warming ideas for the special cowgirl, loved one and little ones in your life.

HEART-SHAPED BLING

This unique buckle from Tom Balding is custom crafted to order. The dots featured are a signature Tom Balding finish. Add a little flare to your cowgirl’s wardrobe by custom ordering it with her initials, or a brand and make this Valentine’s Day one she’ll never forget!

tombalding.com

buckle-stainless-three-heart-3-dots

ONE FOR THE KIDDOS

Here’s a handmade Valentine card for kids, created by Skip To My Lou which features a good pun! These Don’t Say Neigh Horse Valentines are so easy to put together for your child’s classmates. Add some cute horse figures from the dollar store and your child has an incredibly cute card to hand out.

Kids-Valnetine

 

HEART ARMITAS

These beautiful heart detailed chinks can be found on Western Horse Review’s Pinterest pages:

WHR Pinterest

Hearts

14 HANDS AMOUR

The Cupid’s Arrow variety pack from 14 Hands Winery features a 3-bottle Red Blend that includes: a 2014 Sauvignon Blanc, Washington State, a 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley and a 2013 Merlot, Columbia Valley. This gift is perfect for the romantic holiday.

ImageProxy

FORGING LOVE

A set of hand-made horse shoe hearts crafted exclusively by Barbara Thoreson of BT Farrier services range are truly a unique way to say “I Love You.” 

Heart-Shoes

 

DAINTY ADORATION

A lava rack and leopard jasper bracelet with heart and arrow accent from Cactus n’ Sage boutique is delicate way to beautify your cowgirl’s wrist this Valentine’s Day.

Heart-&-Arrow-bracelet

 

DATE NIGHT

Heritage Ranch near Red Deer, AB, offers all kinds of romance packages today and throughout the month. Their carriage/sleigh rides offer the unique experience of riding behind a team of powerful horses combined with beautiful woodland scenery. Combine your carriage or sleigh ride with a lunch or dinner from their great ranch style restaurant and you have the perfect day or evening out. Spoil your partner with romance with a private sleigh ride and 5-course dinner then, the roaring fire on their patio will help warm those willing to brave the cold!

Wedding-Carriage

CUPID’S BIT

This beautiful E.Garcia concho and heart shank bit with low port roller would make anyone’s heart soar this Valentine’s day!

Heart-shank

 

Alberta Whisky Cake

It’s becoming increasingly prevalent to consider source (local) and company (niche) in our world. In a sense, our western culture has perhaps always leaned more towards a high standard of craftsmanship, than an overload of cheap trappings. We cherish one well-made bit crafted from a local artisan, over 10 made overseas. A pair of chaps so beautifully constructed they must be passed on from mother to daughter. And so on.

I’ve as much as possible refined and practiced the same criteria in my kitchen and lifestyle. I’d rather have less, and enjoy quality than stack up on bulk buys of ridiculously processed foods.

awckamlaAll part of why I never grow tired of this friend, and her consistently positive mind and joy of life.

It took baker Kamla McGonigal of Calgary, Alberta, four years to perfect her recipe. Determination, baby, that’s what it took. The fourth generation Calgary native wanted to use whisky, locally distilled at Highwood Distiller’s, from grain at nearby farms as one of the main ingredients in her delectable cakes. Finally after countless hours over an oven, McGonigal developed one of the best tasting and most unique baked-goods available to those with discerning palates – the Alberta Whisky Cake.

awcwhiskeycakeboxUsing only the finest locally-sourced ingredients, Alberta Whisky Cakes offer a seductive flavor. You will be able to smell it’s sweet, distinct goodness before you will ever taste it, but as whisky advocates know – this is a desirable trait.

awcradioSo, as I’m working through my Christmas list of gift-giving and thank-you’s – both personal and corporate, Alberta Whisky Cakes in their delightful western-styled packaging are a top pick. The beautiful bundts are simple to order, and because of the dense, whisky intinction, keep well through shipping and into the Christmas season.

Find Alberta Whisky Cake on Facebook or, here.