Sunday, 31 January 2016

Reader Showcase Featuring Mary from The Netherlands

Welcome to the first of a series where the beautiful creations of blog readers is featured!
If you have thought about making a bracelet from horse tail hair but have not yet attempted something, perhaps this series will inspire you to have a go.
Read on to learn about Mary's experience of braiding so far.

Hitched Bridle
My name is Mary, from The Netherlands, and I started making horse hair bracelets a couple of months ago, October 2015. I'm working with horse hair almost 15 years though, hitching, making bridles. 

When my 25yr old horse passed away in July 2015 I started thinking that I would love to make a bracelet myself of some tail
hair I have kept from him. But first I needed to practice.

Leather Bracelet with Horse Tail Hair
With the help of a friend that does excellent leather work, the first bracelet was with leather (including horse hair that I use for hitching). I was pleased with the result but, I decided that I wanted to make bracelets only from horse hair too. So, I just started...  
The hardest thing was getting findings (end caps, clasps, etc) that I like. There is a lot on Etsy but I was little afraid to order from there and I just wanted to have a few items to start with.

I made two bracelets (again from hair in stock) for myself to try out. I posted them on FB. Then I got questions from friends and people at our stable if I could make one for them with their horse’s hair. Now it was time to get more stuff: other end caps, charms, etc. I've had a lot of help from other enthusiasts that are on the FB page of The Horsehair Bracelet Project. They gave me help and a lot of ideas. I would never have dared to start making a bracelet for someone else without them!
Horse Hair Bracelet

There is still a lot of progress to be made, but that will come, in time. I love making the bracelets and make people happy, so I've found a new hobby. Still need to make one for myself from my horse his hair though, but for the next week I'm little too busy with other ones

Readers will all agree that Mary has produced some beautiful items here. Bracelets that hold memories of treasured equine partners. Mary's desire to create her own bracelet was driven by the loss of her horse Jengo. Below is a moving tribute to Jengo with some photos of him in his prime.

I was asked by Louise to also write something about my best friend and biggest love…. my horse Jengo, who passed away on July 2nd, 2015 at the age of 25, after being together for 18 years, 2 months and 4 days…..

It's very difficult to put something on paper in short, as I could write a book about him, and about us….. What we did and the bond we had. Besides that, it's emotionally very hard. I think about him every hour of every day. Thinking about him brings me to tears immediately, as it is now, at this moment again. Some horses are just 'once in a lifetime' friends.

Therefore I decided to translate my farewell letter to him, as it's the best way to let everyone know how much I miss him….

Some explanation:

Boy is my other horse, Julienne is my disabled sister, Kim is my friend and stable-mate, Levi is her horse and Jengo's 'being nuts together' meadow mate.

Mischa is my dog who always went riding with us and loved to sit on the saddle in front of me. She became 17,5 years old

Goodbye darling….

After the most fantastic period of 18 years, 2 months and 4 days together, I had to say goodbye to you today. You were 25 years old….

We would have loved to spend so much more time together, with Boy, with Kim and her horse Levi, but it was not meant to be. Julienne is heart-broken and misses you terribly.

You were 'her' horse, the only one she trusted and you have never ever done something wrong when she was riding you, whilst you showed me every corner of the riding arena and the forest, in full speed.

It will never be like it was…. It hurts so, so much…..

You where my teacher, my pride, my rock and the rock of so many other, young horses you took in tow. You were a hard worker, a fighter, a horse with brains and a build-in compass.

You confronted me as no-one else could and outsmarted me so many times. I had to earn your respect instead of the other way around, we were two peas in a pod, knowing each other as no-one else did. One look in each others eye was enough.

A once in a lifetime horse, so extraordinary, so special.

After your serious injury in December 2012, you fought and came back. With all the possibilities we got from the stable owners and with so much help and patience from Kim. You loved training English again with her to get your strength back, enjoyed it to the max. You and me made as many rides outside as possible. Going out together with Kim & Levi, the both of you as nuts as can be. Oh gosh, how much fun we had….we enjoyed it and had so many laughs. How crazier the better and preferably going as fast as you could.

You also enjoyed playing with Boy and riding outside. You took him to tow as from day 1 when Boy came in 2008. The leader and the follower, it was so clear. You gave him confidence as a young horse and led him through life.

By sweetheart… time has come, you are so tired, your leg being not well again.

You always wanted to work so hard, wanted to do all you could for me, wanted to deserve your food otherwise you were not satisfied and felt useless.

You fought and came back from your first injury, but now it's enough, I can see it in your eyes.

Please go look for Mischa and give her a big hug. Go run into the forest together, like the three of us did for so many years

Soon we'll be together again, you'll come home…..


Jengo, thank you for everything!!!

I'll never ever forget my little guy!!

Your lady…..