Monday, May 25, 2015

Tacked Up

It may have been a holiday weekend, but model horse business kept me occupied for most of it. I purchased items for the costume, tinkered with the diorama, rewrote several articles, reworked the sales list, did a bit of design work on the BreyerFest paperwork, and I just finished archiving about a year’s worth of hobby e-mails, because that’s ephemera, too: it just happens to be of the electronic sort.

FYI: as far as the Midyears go, many online dealers already have them listed on their respective web sites. It’s not my policy to recommend one online dealer over another, because I am fortunate enough to have several local toy stores from which to handpick, and my experiences ordering online (beyond the Breyer web site) have been rather limited.

If you need any other assistance, the Halloween Horse’s name is Ichabod and he’s a Fighting Stallion covered in skulls. And he glows. So awesome.

Some of the other Midyears include the Best of British releases, and a Pacer. Others, too, but I noticed the Pacer because it is a Pacer - with a yellow halter! I love it when they use more unusual or flamboyant colors on halters like that. My favorite, in that regard, would be the beautiful "Payne’s Gray" halter on the Matte Bay Quarter Horse Gelding in the 2001 Riding Academy Gift Set release for JC Penney. The funky colors used on the 2009 Surprise Quarter Horse Geldings are also cool, though maybe a shade less so because of the unattainability of the Silver Filigree, Smoke and Charcoal ones.

Molded-on tack is definitely not a thing with collectors nowadays: they want their horses clean and unadorned. All of my first three horses - the Man o’ War, the Pacer, and the Western Prancing Horse - came with molded-on tack, so I have not had much of an issue with it personally.

It’s been years since any new Breyer injection mold has come with molded-on tack or accessories (excluding ribbons and braids); the Balking Mule was the last "new" mold with any, in 1968. It wasn’t until 1995, with the release of the Fine Porcelain Premier Arabian Mare, that we started seeing new molds with molded-on tack again. Just about all of the newer molds with molded-on tack have been Nonplastic releases designed to appeal more toward the "home decorating" crowd than the collecting-playing-showing ones.

Two factors put an end to mold-on tack on plastics. The first was the moving away from the questionable practice of adapting and appropriating of molds from other companies for their own use; as I explained before, most of those early tacked-up molds were based on preexisting molds from other companies.

The second was hobbyist influence: by the late 1960s, Breyer was taking the hobbyist movement, and the advice of the individual hobbyists, more seriously. We didn’t want molded-on tack interfering with our own tack, for play or for show. 

2 comments:

Dressagekid said...

Interesting point about the tack. I just got another Man O War and love him. I'm experimenting ways of how to make the halters that they wear more functional. It works well for racehorses though and even the QHG looks appropriate in a halter. He reminds me of a trail horse and many trail horses have an extra halter on.

Anonymous said...

Have you heard about the new Breyer Valegro moldel (I guess that's set to release late this year or early next year)?