Say neigh to dirty breeches – Ador Equestrian

Say neigh to dirty breeches – Ador Equestrian

Michelle Hicks’s first foray into equestrian clothing was to tailor a dressage tailcoat for a friend. One request led to three, and three led to 10. Soon enough, she discovered first-hand what needed to improve in equestrian fashion.

startup founder of ador equestrian

 

Michelle Hicks’s first foray into equestrian clothing was to tailor a dressage tailcoat for a friend. One request led to three, and three led to 10. Soon enough, she discovered first-hand what needed to improve in equestrian fashion.

While horseback riders cut an elegant silhouette on their majestic animals, the sport is set in an environment where mud and dirt abounds. A pretty inconvenient situation, given that it is compulsory for competitors to wear white breeches on the circuit.

Michelle set out to create a fabric that is similar to spanx – a 3D garment which smooths and contours itself to your physique. Designed to stay put and not run with friction, the material makes all body types look good in tight white breeches.

The silicone application, which is screen printed onto the fabric, ensures that saddle marks and mud washes off easily. Overall, Michelle has created a revolutionary garment that remains stain-free, bright white and looks brand new for longer.

This invention kicked off her own label – Ador Equestrian.

“Pattern making and tailoring was my hobby. I’ve always wanted to find a niche product that I can run with and build a global company on,” said Michelle.

“I believe I have found that niche product.”

Michelle’s strong conviction sustained her through an arduous set-up process, which she described as “time consuming and costly”.

It took three years for Michelle to produce this fabric, during which she would have to wait an entire month for a single sample, and another six weeks for the next one.

However, it was all worthwhile. Ador Equestrian brings a refreshing spin to the archaic industry of equestrian clothing – both in design and customer experience.

Their website will soon offer an online customisation tool which offers designs that stray from the conventional trends in equestrian wear. From gingham print to fuschia pink breeches, horseback riders can now express their unique personalities without sacrificing the comfort of a customised fit.

This tool can also be applied to dressage tailcoats, where demand for customisation is neigh high. 

“Making a tailcoat is like making a wedding dress,” Michelle explained. “Price is not a concern – my clients ask for everything and make all sorts of requests.”

When it comes to running her own business, Ador Equestrian is not Michelle’s first rodeo. A trained Myotherapist, she has been running her own practice for the last 25 years – an experience that has proved extremely valuable in setting up her newest venture.

“My experience has trained me to listen to the pain points of my customers,” she said.

“When customers love what you can provide, I really enjoy that. To be able to surpass what other manufacturers are doing and to make a better product really spurred me on.”

Her only regret? Not tapping into equestrian fashion 20 years earlier.  

“The market is very exciting and I find show jumping to be thrilling,” said Michelle. “I want to be on the circuit myself, not as a rider but as a spectator.”

“My dream is to be on the Longines Masters Series, a global tour that goes around Tokyo, New York and France.”

Unsurprisingly, Michelle plans to make Ador Equestrian a global brand. With her keen instinct for business, we have no doubt that an international presence lies in her future. 

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28 November 2019

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28 November 2019

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