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Malvern Saddlery Owner Jill Apfelbaum Is an Equestrian Fashionista

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Photos by Tessa Marie Images

An avid rider, Apfelbaum specializes in boots, britches and show coats for competition and everyday wear in the Main Line area.

Jill Apfelbaum

Malvern Saddlery has been a go-to for equestrian gear since Jill Apfelbaum opened her boutique in 1993. A fashion insider and an avid rider, Apfelbaum specializes in boots, britches and show coats for competition and everyday wear.

HER BACKGROUND: For 12 years, I was director of personal shopping services for Bloomingdale’s. I spent another 12 years in high fashion. I’ve been involved in equestrian sports for over 30 years. When I opened Malvern Saddlery, I was at a point in my career where the corporate structure wasn’t something I wanted to continue with. I saw a void in the market for a high-end equestrian boutique that incorporated all the necessities of the sport with a lifestyle point of view.

THE EVOLUTION OF EQUESTRIAN FASHION: When I started, the options were restricted and not always so user friendly. The market has maintained respect for tradition but evolved to reflect a more technical approach to fabrications. That allows for movement, washability and great style.

FASHION VS. FUNCTION: We’re extremely safety conscious. We pride ourselves on our expertise for properly fitting helmets. We work with Horse Pilot, a company from France, to fit riders with a very minimalistic but essential “airbag” safety vest to be worn anytime they mount a horse to ride, regardless of the discipline, to help ensure a safe experience.

HER FAVORITES: I love my Sergio Grasso Walk & Ride paddock boots. They’re like amazing leather sneakers with unparalleled comfort. You’ll often see me in our “denim” riding pants. There are no jeans more comfortable. They’re designed for riding, so they have great stretch and amazing fit—no horse required.

The Outfit

Horse Pilot Suntech shirt in ice gray, $110.

Horse Pilot Suntech shirt in ice gray, $110

Samshield charcoal denim stretch riding pant, $399.

Samshield charcoal denim stretch riding pant, $399Horse Pilot bomber jacket in ice gray, $385.

Horse Pilot bomber jacket in ice gray, $385Sofia dress boots with patent leather border and Swarovski crystal detailing by Franco Tucci, $1,165.

Sofia dress boots with patent leather border and Swarovski crystal detailing by Franco Tucci, $1,165Fiber jump bat with rose-gold accents by Fleck Carbon, $52.

Fiber jump bat with rose-gold accents by Fleck Carbon, $52Custom-designed riding helmet in a metallic finish with rose gold accents by KEP Italia, $795.

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