Flying Changes Magazine recently reached out to Taylor Hall of The Tried Equestrian after discovering this amazing small business geared toward sustainability and high quality apparel. Taylor’s consignment model is out to make our sport more accessible, and when we asked her more about it, we were blown away by her effort and conscientiousness. Here, Taylor tells us more about how The Tried Equestrian came into business.
Before I started The Tried Equestrian, a consignment and discount equestrian website, I was 19 or 20 and happened to stumble upon an article about “Work to Ride”, a polo organization for at-risk youth. I found myself quietly sobbing as I realized it was something I knew I wanted to be involved in. Horses have always been my place of solace and it had always bothered me that it was a sport that was so exclusionary. In this moment, I knew I wanted to find a way to make the sport more accessible so that more people could afford to find this passion.
Fast forward a few years to me cleaning out my closet at my parents’ house and having no idea what to do with all of my extra riding stuff. The options seemed to be eBay or pass it off to Goodwill to, at best, be used as a Halloween costume. I knew, at this point, that there was a real need for a platform for resale and responsible donation. We started as a consumer-to-consumer sales platform but quickly pivoted when we found a “white glove” service, in which someone else photographed and managed the sale of the product, was what busy consignors really wanted.
I spent a couple of years working a fairly demanding “day job” while I built The Tried Equestrian in the mornings, at lunch, after work on weekends and whenever I could find a few spare minutes. One day, I took the day off to help dress several Compton Jr. Posse riders (a non profit organization in LA created to “keep kids on horses and off the streets”) for a show, and I ended up spending the entire day on the phone with clients from my day job. I wanted to be present in helping the kids get ready and instead was giving half attention to both of my commitments by trying to be in two places at once. The following Monday, I gave my two weeks notice and committed to running The Tried Equestrian full time.
The founding principles of The Tried Equestrian were always about making the sport more accessible but we have always proudly championed environmental sustainability in all of our efforts. In 2013, nearly 13 million tons of clothing were discarded with an estimated 95% still in usable condition. By choosing to shop pre-owned, it helps to slow “fast-fashion” production and by consigning, we give clothing a chance at a second life. The Tried Equestrian provides value on all sides of a transaction – consignors make money on items they are no longer using, while allowing someone else to purchase an item they want or need at a great price, all while making an impact in preserving our environment.
We have set standards for our business that aim to outperform the expectations you would have for a high-end tack shop. We work to source quality products that range in price and have made a point to become experts on fit, sizing, product specs and brand nuances. We also offer free shipping and free returns (on orders $100+) to make your purchase simple and hassle-free and to eliminate any of the fear around ordering from a “consignment” shop.
We believe making consignment easier and more transparent has been key to building up our consignor list. Most consignors sell several times a year and The Tried Equestrian truly becomes part of the lifecycle of their riding attire and gear. We are ready to provide them a consignment kit when they change sizes or switch from the hunters to the jumpers. Our kits include a large shipping bag and a prepaid return label and our consignors can seamlessly ship their items to us to be sold or responsibly donated (in the event that we can’t sell them). Upon arrival all items are cleaned, evaluated, photographed and listed on our website where we have buyers around the world checking daily for their next #triedfinds!