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Picking Color Schemes for Your Hunter

I’ve been lucky enough that my two horses, Indy and Loki, are gray and black, so pretty much any color would look good on them. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t need a signature color! Growing up, my childhood trainer was big on having everyone’s horses’ gear match the barn colors, which at that time were navy and white. So that general idea has always stuck with me a bit, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that your barns colors are going to look good on your horse. So if matching with your barn isn’t a must, then I think it’s important to branch out and figure out what color schemes work best for your individual horse. Here, I’ve outlined some of the colors that go best with common horses colors to help you choose the perfect color scheme for your horse.

Light Bay
My first pony, Belle, was a coopery colored bay and despite my training preferring traditional colors, nine-year-old me insisted she wear purple. Purple was my favorite color; therefore, it was also Belle’s favorite. Although, I do have to say she really rocked that purple. Even today Belle is still wearing her purple. She is now loved by my younger cousin, who shows her in the lower dressage levels. Belle arrives to the horse show in style wearing her sleek black leather halter with purple trim, and continues to rock the purple in the show ring with her blinged out purple browband. I would strongly discourage this look in the hunter world unless you are looking to give your trainer a heart attack.

Despite the fact that your light bay would probably rock purple too, there are more traditional colors that are more fitting for the hunter world and still look great. Hunter green is a great option for this color, and especially with green hunt coats making a reappearance you can look sharp in and out of the show ring. White saddle pads and polos are also a very classic look for your lighter bay.

These top picks in hunter green would look great with your light bay:

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RJ Classics Xtreme Collection Grey Label Soft Shell Hunt Coat

 $230.00 - $232.00
(6 reviews)

Dark Bay:
Hunter green is also a very polished look for your darker bay. A green or black coat would look great in the hunter ring. For schooling, a black saddle pad and polos may look a little dark depending on how dark your bay is, but white and navy are also great options.

These top picks in navy would look great with your dark bay:

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RJ Classics Xtreme Collection Grey Label Soft Shell Hunt Coat

 $230.00 - $232.00
(6 reviews)

Fleece Polo Wraps

(241 reviews)

As I mentioned earlier, grays look great in basically any color! I first got my gray, Indy, when I was still going through the “my horse should wear fun colors” phase. At that point my favorite color was pink, so Indy rocked the manliest color of them all, bright pink. This quickly got shot down by my trainer at the time, but it didn’t stop me from dressing him in pink saddles pads and polos whenever I knew my trainer wouldn’t be around.


blue ribbon
As Indy and I got older we outgrew the pink (but only a little), we moved on to our new favorite color, burgundy. For horse shows we got a light gray stable screen and scrim with burgundy trim and white piping. You’re probably thinking that gray would looking washed out on a gray horse, but the burgundy really pulls the look together. I also have a gray hunt coat with the same burgundy trim that I would wear when we horse showed. I also maybe went a little over board and got him burgundy pillow wraps that he wears when he travels.

Wilker's Combo-Quilt Wraps

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After my recent purchase of Loki, the black horse that I have always dreamed of, I was a little worried that all of my burgundy gear wouldn’t look could with his color. Luckily black horses look great in every color, but I found a color I like even better on him. After having to buy literally all the blankets for him, I feel in love with the way the Hunter Green with Burgundy trim and white piping SmartPak brand blankets look on him. So, I have decided to make these his signature colors. The hunter green complements his color extremely well and I still get my fix of burgundy in there. When Loki and I finally make our debut in the show ring I will probably opt for a Hunter Green show coat over my current gray and burgundy one. Another classic look for your black horse is white, but I would probably try to stay away from black accessories as it would get lost on their black coat.

If you decide to go the green and burgundy route, these top picks would be a great choice for your horse:

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SmartPak Deluxe Turnout Blanket

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SmartPak Deluxe Turnout Sheet

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Similar to bays, what colors look good on your chestnut is going to depend on how dark or light he/she is. While navy would look great on a lighter chestnut, it may look a little too dark on a liver chestnut. For a liver chestnut burgundy or hunter green would be a more appropriate color selection

These top picks in white would look great on your chestnut:

Fleece Polo Wraps

(241 reviews)

Is there another color scheme that looks fabulous on your horse? Tell us about it in the comments below!

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6 comments on “Picking Color Schemes for Your Hunter
  1. Hannah M.R says:

    I read this and it was so good

  2. Hannah M.R says:

    I think lots of people bay them I lot

  3. Laura says:

    My chestnut looks fantastic in all forms of blue. We rock royal blue and purple cross country!

  4. Jaye Laughlin says:

    For my bright chestnut mare, I love turquoise!

  5. Kristina Daddario says:

    I have a medium true chestnut. I like him in navy , neutral earthy , white , dark plum , silver to grey , we are a dressage discipline.

  6. Jackie S. says:

    I am hopeful that my almost-two-year-old palomino will be a star in the hunter ring at local shows in a few years! I love her purple barn halter, but I kind of envision her growing into navy.

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