The good news is this Saturday marks the first day of summer. Yay! The bad news is the Farmer's Almanac predicts the 2014 season will be especially hot, humid, and, well, downright oppressive in many parts of the country. Oh, LOVELY!
This got us thinking about breeches that are both "hot" (in the sense of hip, stylish, chic) .. and "cool" (i.e. functionally wearable) in even the steamiest of climates.
The Animo Nisotta breech. The Nisottas were created specifically for dressage riders, with a higher-rise design and "full" patented Animo Gripping System. We chose two to try, one in the color Bianco (Animo's competition white), and a second in Ottanio (picture the azure waters of the Mediterranean off the coast of Capri, darling.)
Why Animo is HOT:
Many of us think of Animo as an ultra trendy, metal-stud-trim-on-your-shadbelly sort of brand, but it's much more than that. Take a minute to watch this Animo advertisement on YouTube. Oh come on, just humor me on this - it's SIXTY SECONDS ...
... Back? Ok, don't panic - SHADBELLY is a wholesome, family-friendly dressage style blog, so we're not about to venture into an analysis of the symbolism here. And frankly, I don't even care to know how it translates into English, because THIS is how I like to imagine it:
Man alone in darkness. Doors open. Woman enters, walks toward man. Woman slowly unbuttons and removes jacket.
WOMAN: I bought a new horse today.
Man looks up, hesitates, then hands woman his checkbook.
MAN: Get two.
See my point here? I have GOT to start wearing more Animo.
Why the Animo Nisotta breeches are COOL:
One ride in the Animo Nisotta's and you too may proclaim traditional full seat breeches are ridiculously obsolete when temperatures rise. The gripping technology on the Animo breeches ingeniously secures your position in the saddle, while still offering a significantly more "breathable" (aka cooler!) garment. An added plus: you can actually MOVE and STRETCH in these things. Suddenly zipping up boots and putting on spurs is gracefully effortless!
Animo eliminated a major trouble spot, the knee, by anatomically shaping the design around it and eliminating seams where your knee bends. Brilliant. Oh, and thank you for the soft, stretchy ankle design as well - no Velcro to catch and snare EVERYTHING tumbling around it in the wash.
The Nisotta's are made of Animo's light and breathable summer weight fabric. We believe the true quality of a garment is best seen from the inside, and the Nisottas don't disappoint (click the photo above to see detailed inside-out images). The breech features an inner layer of an anti-microbial, anti-static lining that is soft and beautiful against the sensitive innocence of your fanny. And we ADORE the surprise of the bright "Liberty of London-esque" flowery print fabric on the inner pockets of the blue breeches - nice touch!
Competition worthy? Oh yes, most definitely! The Bianco color is beautifully bright and crisp with soft grey stitch detail. The clean styling of the Nisottas pairs perfectly with the newer, more modern dressage coats we love. Surprisingly, we find the tone-on-tone of the Nisotta's Animo gripping system to be a LESS distracting look, as compared to the high-contrast shapes and colors on some other breeches. And let's face facts, ladies, sometimes having an attention-grabbing visual target on your butt is not the wisest stylistic choice. The Nisotta's offer a refreshing subtlety to one's posterior.
The Animo Nisotta breech is available from US Animo. The breeches are 100% Italian made and retail for $399.00. US Animo is offering $20 off shipping on orders in June with code EASYSHIP at checkout.
Bring on the heat, baby!
- The SHADBELLY Team