"Proper hunting attire is rigidly conventional for two reasons. First, over the years that people have been hunting, a form of clothing has been developed that comes closest to the most practical under the average conditions of weather and terrain encountered in the hunt field. Second, some of the pleasure derived by those who hunt, and much of the pleasure derived by those who watch (especially landowners) comes from the feeling of tradition and from the spectacle of people properly and conventionally dressed for the event. You could play the World Series with both teams in slacks and polo shirts, but neither the players not the fans would enjoy it as much."
William Wadsworth, Riding to Hounds in America
Rule # 1. Tack and Clothing should be well fitting, spotlessly clean and neat.
Rule # 2. If you have any questions, check with a member to learn what is appropriate and expected at that particular hunt.
- Multicolored and patent leather brow bands are not permitted.
Brow bands should be the same color as the rest of the bridle.
- Saddle pads should be white and as inconspicuous as possible.
During the regular hunting season, beginning with Opening Meet, formal dress is required on Saturdays, holidays, and Joint Meets. During the week, ratcatcher is permitted.
FORMAL TURNOUT FOR ADULTS (FROM THE GREEN SPRING VALLEY HOUNDS HANDBOOK)
Hunting attire for members of the field is as follows:
- Black or charcoal grey for men; black or dark blue for women.
- Black hunt buttons may be worn by members specifically granted that privilege by the Joint-Masters.
- Green collars and brass buttons may be worn only by former Masters.
- Members are permitted to wear pink coats on Opening Meet, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's.
- Canary or tattersall.
- Beige, canary or very light grey.
- Never white (unless with a pink coat) and rust only in inclement weather.
- Plain-topped black.
- Boot garters are always correct, though not required. If worn, they should be black (or white with white breeches/pink coat.)
- Brown-topped black boots are reserved for staff, Masters, ex-Masters, Hunt Secretaries and ex-Hunt Secretaries.
- White stocks should be neatly tied and pinned down to the shirt.
- White string or light colored leather are preferred
- Black, with safety harness, velvet-covered hunt cap (with ribbons up) or black calientes are acceptable
- Tweed or twill in a muted, subdued color
- Tan, buff, rust or brown
- Black or brown
- Button-down shirt (if wearing a tie); turtle neck or riding shirt if wearing a stock
Tie or Stock
- (If wearing a stock tie with ratcatcher it should be colored—never white--and should be fastened with a plain gold safety pin.)
- Black, brown, or tan string are all appropriate
- Black, brown or blue with safety harness. If there is a ribbon at the back, the ribbons should be pointed UP.