I am so excited to feature this next amazing boss lady in our Women in Equestrian Business post. Melodie Weintraut, like myself is a mom, a girlfriend to her awesome husband and a professional adult amateur. She works her booty off as a professional poultry inspector, and has grown a successful and creative business, Bays4DaysCrochet. PHEW!
I met Melodie a few years ago. Outside of the business world; her positive, realistic, down-to-earth personality was a breath of fresh air! Now my horse is decked out in his gorgeous grey, black and bling bonnet. All of her products are made to order, to match your colors, your horse, and your style. Melodie has such a fun spunky style, this post is sure to relate to you, make you giggle, and/or make you scratch your head. Either way make sure to check her gorgeous pieces of work out at Bays4DaysCrochet, she wont disappoint!
While Melodie waited to land her first “big girl job”; she taught her self to crochet (thanks to YouTube). She took that new found love of crocheting to make her own horse bonnet design. Melodie’s logo however was created by her husband. After a rough day at Grad School, he created this Tim Burton-esque picture of Quincy (her heart horse). After mastering her own pattern, she released Quincy to strut his stuff down the barn aisle…and if you’ve seen the bonnets Melodie creates, it is no wonder that barn friends now had bonnet envy! Melodie’s style is unique and her pattern and logo are 100% her own. She makes that entire bonnet without making a single cut (besides the final cut).
While Melodie claims she isn’t the “typical” people person; she can definitely strike up a connection with pretty much anyone who talks about animals. She loves talking to people who are designing their bonnet, discovering colors they love, what colors bring out the eyes of their chestnut mare, adding personalized ears, and grasping the ideas of what you as a horse owner, lover, and rider would dream of if you are to get a bonnet. However, it wasn’t all horses, unicorns and pink bonnets. Melodie noticed that other creators were pricing themselves very low. However, while Melodie’s prices would not be that low, her prices reflect the hand made work, dedication, and passion that she crochets into every inch of the bonnets she creates.
Melodie realizes that not everyone appreciates the justification of her reasoning, but she believes that while money doesn’t grow on trees, her time, quality and customization doesn’t either. In 5 years, Melodie would love to see some her teens/young adult audience sporting her bonnets at some major shows. “It would be so cool to hop on Facebook Groups, Eventing Nation, etc and seeing a pair going out, being successful, and wearing my product”. But before then, if her amazing bonnets can just continue to pay her monthly feed bill, she will continue to do a happy dance.
About Melodie Weintraut
Melodie, her family and her business are all based on Maryland’s beautiful Eastern Shore #madeinMD. She has always loved horses, however didn’t start riding until she was about 18, her Freshman year of college. Currently she is dancing around the sandbox with her OTTB, Hokie (yes….a good old VT Grad), and Pixie, her 11 year old Oldenburg pony. Along with her 2 equine friends, she raises rabbits, has 3 dogs and 2 cats! Melodie is totally a unique chick, not only is she down to earth, but she is also honest…to a fault. If you don’t want her honest opinion about your horse, don’s ask her for her thoughts #warning.
Let’s Get a Little Personal with Melodie Weintraut
What is something not everyone knows about you? Melodie applied to vet school 15 times, over the course of 3 admission cycles, Not once was she asked to sit for an interview.
What is something you would tell your younger self? “I’d tell myself not to worry so much about things. I used to have anxiety with my old horse, about things that hadn’t happened/things that never came to pass. Looking back, I should have just ridden the horse I had”. Other than that, she would also tell her younger self to not put up with bully trainers.
What mantra you live by? Don’t focusing so much on making a living, that you forget to make a life.
What is the last show you binge watched? “I don’t watch a whole lot of TV, but I am currently listening to Crime Junkie, and Up and Vanished podcasts.”
What is the last book you read? She’s not sure. “Other than baby books for my adorable daughter. Other than that, no clue.”
What is your favorite word? Tedious
What profession other than your own would you attempt for a week? A Veterinarian
What is your favorite food? Wawa Soft Pretzels and Pepsi
How do you take your Coffee? With a LOT of International Delight Creamer #butt-ton
What is something you want people to remember about your brand? There is a real human, mom boss, behind the bonnet that makes your horse looks amazing! Melodie is the only one, crocheting the body, tucking in the ends, sewing on that bling, and cutting out the ears and vinyl, and pressing it on. A real person is messaging you back and forth about time lines so you can get your bonnet in time for your big show.
In Conclusion with Melodie Weintraut of Bays4DaysCrochet
Melodie is no stranger to working hard, facing setbacks, and changing dreams; so she has become used to the idea that maybe the universe is trying to tell her something. Instead of making her dreams a possibility, she makes your bonnet dreams a possibility. She handcrafts and designs each one from scratch and Melodie puts her heart, her love, and her best wishes into each custom bonnet for your horse. Never once has she been afraid of failure, but faced it head on and made a decision to continue on. If you haven’t met Melodie, or seen her designs you are missing out. I can tell you from experience, when putting one of her bonnets on your horse, you will be proud; just like she is with each of her products she mails you with love.
We hope you join us next time for another look inside the life of another woman behind an amazing equestrian brand. Discover her dream and the adventure she has experienced. Until then, find more posts like this one, HERE.
If you are reading this, you must be looking for some practical gifts for your favorite Equestrians! The holidays are right around the corner, everyone is busy, and it takes a long time to find the perfect practical gift! So, we have done the hard work for you! Most all gifts are under $30, even under $20, they support small equestrian businesses around the US. Many of these gifts offer not only fantastic prices, but free shipping! We love these products, and so we are sure that you and your horse loving, (or animal loving) friends will totally appreciate these products too! Links to web pages are linked in their headings, Instagram links are in the blurb! They are in no specific order, because as you will find, each of these businesses is outstanding in their own unique way! Happy Discovering, and happy shopping!
These amazing bonnets are custom made and can be found on Etsy. From colors to size, Bays4DaysCrochet can make something that is perfect for your horse when schooling, showing, or hacking. Prices range from $35-$55, and with all the customization’s that can be made, these bonnets are well worth the price. But that’s not it, order on Etsy, and receive free shipping!! However, you must order soon, because these bonnets are made custom for your horse, they need time to be magically created and customized. Find her on IG @Bays4DaysCrochet
These Equigroomers are an amazing addition to any tack box. What we love most about these groomers and shedding blades, is the fact that not only can they be used on multiple animals, but they can also be used on hairy fabrics too….like the fleece of a cooler, or a hairy saddle pad! The uses for these tools are endless! The fun colors make them easy to find if dropped in a stall, the blades don’t rust, do not pull hair, or irritate even the most delicate of skin. Plus, they have deals for bulk orders. Prices range from $16-$20. You can thank me Later! Find them on IG @Equigroomers_USA
I’m not sure that I will have enough space to tell you how amazing this towel is for hot summer days or after a good work out (for you or your horse), but I will try! You will be the favorite person in the barn this upcoming Spring and Summer! These towels have an amazing ability to stay much cooler than the outdoor temperature just by staying damp. They are made of a PVA material which has the capabilities of staying damp and cool for a long time, AND is anti-microbial to prevent any mold or mildew build up. They can be used time and time again to keep you or your horse cool, and are a huge life saver! The best part, each one of these babies is only $15…for all that is packed into a towel, it is a SERIOUS Steal! When you’re ready to use your towel again….do just as they say…Wet, Wring and Wave. Find on IG @HeatedHorse
Blanket Safe is perfect for horse, pet, and even human laundry of all kinds. From Wraps to Dog beds, Blanket Safe is NOT just for horse blankets, and can easy and safely wash your products without destroying waterproofing, deteriorating fabric, or adding harmful skin irritating chemicals. Blanket Safe is Detergent Free, Anti-bacterial to remove all the festering bacteria growth after a season of wear, and works best in COLD water, unlike 99% of all other washes that need warm or hot water to be effective (which can destroy the factory applied waterproofing). All scents are very light after washing, as to not irritate the animals sense of smell! Blanket Safe comes in 8oz concentrate to mix yourself, 16oz or 32oz, and Bundle Packs! Prices range from $10-$20. Best part, starting Janurary 2020, all 8oz concentrate bottles will come with 1 FREE refill. Send the small Bottle back to Blanket Safe and they will refill with concentrate solution and mail back. You just pay shipping both ways. Find on IG @BlanketSafe
Foot Huggies Riding Boot Socks are hands down our favorite. These are no ordinary riding boot socks! If you are looking for the best of a riding sock, with the feel of an athletic sock, and comfort of a slipper, you have FOUND THE SOCK FOR YOU! Foot Huggies are not a pair that you throw away after a few uses, and don’t expect holes…expect these socks to last and look the same! These socks are PACKED full of benefits, from arch support, to COOLMAX ®️ LYCRA ®️ Technology, the protection from blisters, and lets not forget to mention the left and right foot. These foot huggies socks, literally hug your foot in all the right places! They come in men, women and kid sizes, and have literally all equestrian disciplines available. But, that’s not it. They also have snowflakes made with Swarovski crystals, and a Nations collection! While you may think that with all these benefits packed into a sock, the must be 3 inches thick, they in fact, are not. They do come in the original thickness and a thin (but not like wearing nylon stockings!), these socks are incredible, and the only ones that go in my boots! Customization is available. Prices ranging from $10.95 for short socks to $21.95 for tall boot socks. Find on IG @Foothuggies_ridingboot_socks .
These gorgeous stock ties can and more can only be by Stockbubble. Stepping away from the boring everyday white bland stock ties, you can find almost any pattern, color, theme at the Etsy site. Custom made for you, in your choice of stunning color or pattern. Have your favorite equestrian stand out at their next show, shine a little brighter and add some personality! Or, go and buy for yourself! Most every English equestrian needs at least one stock tie for every holiday, and then an extra one for shows! Going fox hunting?…add a few more to your wardrobe! Stockbubble also has a line dog bandannas for all of you that are owned by a dog! Check out these handmade and very colorful, unique stock ties on IG @stockbubble or on their etsy link which is linked above!
If you are reading this blog, you or someone you know loves all the smells horse life can offer! So what is it? Fresh cut hay, sweet feed, carrots, apples, peppermints, fly sprays, bedding, at least one of those rings a bell, maybe fresh cleaned tack, or morning rides? Well, Grey Horse Candle Co. has all those scents and many more to last you, even when you or your friend are missing their barn time! These Candles not only come in gorgeous packaging, but they offer bundles! Get sets of 3 or more for less! These gorgeous looking and smelling candles range in price from $13 and up! They offer a range of sizes, and a range of scents that are guaranteed to please any equestrian! Each one is made with love and hand poured. Find on Etsy…with FREE shipping, and check out on IG @Greyhorsecandleco (even if you are one of those that aren’t into candles, if you love anything about farm, barn, horse life…check out their amazing Instagram and the gorgeous pics!!)
I don’t even know where to begin with ALL of The Infused Equestrian products, especially Shiny. This product is outrageously fantastic (for your horse’s hair, NOT yours…because you may be tempted once you see how amazing that mane and tail look!) Ranging between $14-$26 this product is a bargain, but that is not to be misconstrued because their quality is outrageous!! They ALL include super high quality ingredients, which makes this not only a product that provides excellent results, but one that you can rest assured aims to help your horse’s hair, not hurt! But the Infused Equestrian Products do not just focus on hair, they focus on every aspect of horse and rider life! All of The Infused Equestrian’s products that are designed for the horse, rider and the barn; they are hand crafted and made from 100% pure therapeutic essential oils. These products are one of my grooming staples, and I find that excellent winter grooming care provides a sturdy foundation for a fantastic looking horse in the Spring and Summer! Make sure to find them on IG at @theinfusedequestrian . P.S. If you haven’t tried the Pure bit wipes, you are missing out! And again, please don’t use in your own hair, helmet hair is a cool thing…greasy hair is NOT!
EquiString is a totally unique gift for a friend, coach, or yourself! Don’t take the name wrong, and I’m sure you will find out for yourself when you check out their Etsy link, but EquiString is not limited to just string designs! They offer totally customized barn/stall signs, bridle holders, coasters…and YES their very popular string designs! Get them with or without lettering! And it doesn’t have to be horse related, these designs are amazing, cute, beautiful, sentimental….you name it! They are completely one of a kind, and you cannot beat a handmade gift that is totally unique to you (or a friend). Make sure to check out EquiStrings Instagram and Etsy page, not only will their work surprise you….but you will be surprised at the amount of options they offer! Priced at $10 and up, they definitely have a gift for anyone that loves farm or/and barn life! Find them on IG @Equistring .
Don’t tell me you don’t get sweaty under that helmet! These moisture-wicking headbands are wide and thin to keep not only hair off your sweaty face, but to keep sweat from dripping down your face (which ultimately cause streaks as it creates lines from where the dust from the ring has already dried to your sweaty face…OH, c’mon….don’t tell me you don’t have that problem!) Anyways, these headbands are also light weight, they easily fit under your helmet. But, don’t just wear them under a helmet! Wear them to the gym, to pilates, out to lunch with the bestie! They are super cute! BUT WAIT, the best part…this 2 set of black headbands, under $9, YES….FOR BOTH! Another fantastic part, they don’t just come in black! Want colors? They have that too! A 4 Pack is under $17! These are unbelievable. If you have an equestrian friend that gets helmet sweat, a friend that is always looking for moisture-wicking wear, a friend that is headband happy…you cannot go wrong! Make sure to find on IG @mymareco .
Have you heard of the Herd…that is, the Herd of Zebras? This business is built on the foundation of bringing people from all walks of life together, empowering them, telling a story, and making them feel amazing (BOTH inside & out). Herd of Zebras, their clothes are as unique as the people that wear them. Not only are they unbelievably comfortable, but they empower you to embrace yourself, love yourself, and empower yourself (and others!) The story being Herd of Zebras is heart warming, and of course you can read it for yourself on their website (link in Herd of Zebra heading) but let me sum it up! Kind of like how wrinkles tell the story of you, so do zebra stripes and colors depicted in their logo. Each one is a different color, a different shape, none of them are alike, but together they tell a story of each unique person, together they create one beautiful symbol, and while alone they are just one stripe, together they create a unified piece of art. So instead of boring you with how bada$$ this company is, go check out their apparel…like these Fillies before Willies shirts! Prices range from $8 up, but they have everything from accessories to apparel for Kids to Adults. Find on IG @Herd.Of.Zebras .
Myst Equine Products allow your horse to look as gorgeous as the packaging of these products! I wanted to take a minute to shout out to the Myst Dry Shampoo products, especially with cold months ahead! Now you have no excuse for a dusty, dingy looking horse at your next lesson, show, or whenever you need a pick-me-up grooming sesh with your horse! Like all the products we love on our horse, these products are no different! They are high end, super high quality, holistic grooming products! All of the Myst products, including this one has, what I like to call “Their signature blend” of anti-itch botanicals to help keep your horse’s coat healthy in the elements, protect from irritation, but also to prevent the spread of bacteria. (As you know, especially in the winter with blanket season, bacteria growth happens!! Hence our anti-bacterial washes to remove that from your blankets after months of use!) So I definitely love to provide my horses with this added protector between blanketing. As a “retired” nurse there is nothing that grosses me out more than festering bacteria build up, and these products really ease my mind! Myst Products range in price, starting at $19, and worth every penny to keep your horse looking great year round, and keeping their coat and skin protected! Find on IG @Mystequineproducts
We hope we have given you a huge range of holiday gift giving ideas, and by no means are these products are in order of what we love more! However, we pride ourselves in the importance of shopping small business, helping those individuals that are doing it all, giving it all, and providing the best for you, because they are filled with the passion! There are so many businesses out there, these are just the ones that we cant live without, and those that empower and bring together the equestrian community! Happy holidays to all of our loyal followers, new friends, and customers! We wish you the very best this season, and make sure that it is the season of giving…not just for the one you are giving the gift, but for that small business that devotes their time, heart and energy to providing you with something special, just so they can send their kids to riding lessons, or buy them that sparkly whip this holiday!