Everyday glamour - the world of Annabel Brocks

This week we're focusing on a wonderful brand that epitomises style and substance with bringing a little glamour to the country and equestrian lifestyle scenes. Annabel Brocks combines beautifully versatile designs with an eye for different colour combinations that really mark the brand out among a crowded market, and Annabel's commitment to British design and manufacturing means that the quality is second to none. In the beginning... Like those of us who are always cold, Annabel found British winters a challenge following her gruelling fight with cancer. The lack of garments that combined warmth, colour and style for an outdoor lifestyle inspired Annabel to design them for herself, creating

Beauty and simplicity in tweed - Butler Stewart

In an increasingly crowded sea of tweed, one brand stands out as offering simplicity, elegance and quality. Founded by Anna Butler, Butler Stewart is the brand bucking the trend for ‘alternative’ tweed, offering beautifully tailored classic pieces that work for every situation – from the shooting peg to the city office. How did it all begin? After a period working in London’s luxury retail industry, where she fell in love with fabric and the art of tailoring, Anna moved back to her rural roots and realised her dream of setting up a luxury country tailoring brand. It has always been a central theme of Butler Stewart to specialise in tweed pieces that can be worn both in town and country, and

Getting back in the saddle - the final countdown

As Hannah counts down the hours until she can get back in the saddle later this week, we look back at her final few days of her rehab fitness programme and see what she’s been up to in her quest to be riding fit before she gets back on board. As we’ve seen over the last few weeks, the main story has been one of adding in different exercises as the period has gone on. Apart from one not-to-be-repeated session on the bicycle, where the machine somehow set the resistance so high it almost stopped the pedals being able to be turned by the average human, Hannah has maintained the cardio aspect of using the elliptical trainer. As in previous weeks she has slowly built up the intensity of this part

Out of Africa - relaxed luxury with Hyde & Hare

As part of our continuing look into great British brands, we really wanted to bring you the story behind one of Britain’s most exciting new luxury brands – Hyde & Hare. Based in the beautiful Cotswold countryside near Cirencester, Hyde & Hare are committed to bringing us beautiful and unique accessories, fully designed and made in Britain from ethically sourced 100% natural cow hides. Each hide, as you would expect, is unique, and this means that with every Hyde & Hare product you can be sure that no one else will have one the same. In our era of mass-produced fashion this is a real plus point in our eyes, and the quality of Hyde & Hare pieces makes each unique bag extra special. So how did

A wonderful world of accessories with Hortons England

Continuing on our journey meeting the best up and coming British brands, today we're delving into the wonderfully accessorised world of Hortons England. With a love of quality clothing and the country lifestyle, founder Chris Cox set up Hortons England to create products that are stylish but able to stand up to the outdoor life. Taking day-to-day inspiration from the beauty of the changing seasons, Chris and his Oxford-based design team work to bring us essential products that offer quality design and comfort, as well as little design details to bring a smile to our everyday. Despite increasing difficulty in sourcing the whole collection from within the UK, using British manufacturers is som

Getting back in the saddle - a fitness journey: Week 2

It's been an intense week for Hannah, with a flurry of activity meaning that it's been a struggle to motivate herself to get to the gym as often as she would have liked. When she did get there, Hannah made the most of it by ramping up the intensity of her workouts. She again used the cross trainer to get a full body workout, but used the settings on the machine to set a higher resistance to increase the average heart rate of the workout. Although this is completely necessary to improve aerobic fitness, there's nothing like feeling the burn in the muscles when you've only just started the workout session! Those of you who read last week's post will know that Hannah planned to add in more core

5 autumn riding outfit essentials

Continuing with our equestrian theme on the blog this week, we at The Finer Horse have been looking at stylish autumn outfit ideas for riding and yard duties, which both look good and can cope with the often unpredictable weather at this time of year. Here are our picks for a great autumn look… Spooks Penny gilet We’re big fans of the Spooks brand at The Finer Horse, and our founder Hannah swears by her show jacket that is still looking as good as new after years of wearing and washing (yes really!) – including 18 months of almost daily use. This gorgeous quilted Penny gilet looks really stylish, and is perfect for layering without the bulk as it has an internal waistcoat that can be zipped

5 autumn-related issues for your horse

So you’ve staved off laminitis in the spring, and sweet itch in the summer – surely autumn is a time to enjoy the “season of mists and mellow fruitfulness” with your horse before the onslaught of winter? If only it were that simple… To help you make the most of this glorious time of year with your horse, we at The Finer Horse have put together a (by no means exhaustive) list of autumn-related issues to be aware of to help keep your horse happy and healthy. Laminitis Firstly, let’s look at a surprise inclusion on this list of autumn-related potential pitfalls,laminitis. Often a condition associated with spring, the wet weather commonly associated with autumn, combined with temperatures just

Getting back in the saddle - a fitness journey: Week 1

In a new series, we’re following the journey of our founder Hannah as she prepares to get back in the saddle following the fracture of her hand (the 5th metacarpal bone, to be precise) while cross country schooling in August. Although a relatively minor bone to break, it still resulted in an enforced period of no exercise for the first month of healing, to minimise the chance of the bone re-breaking or moving out of alignment. This has left Hannah with much work to do in order to be fit for riding at the end of this month, when she plans (in agreement with her doctors) to return to her usual early morning riding for the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment as a civilian support rider. With her

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