Young Hunter Profile: Haute Couture aka ‘Vogue’
Haute Couture (aka Vogue) is a Dutch warmblood mare Jessica Smith purchased a little over two years ago from Alan Waldman. Her name was inspired by Smith’s grandmother’s love of fashion combined with a desire to stick with the guidelines that Dutch Warmbloods born in 2012 should have names starting with “H”.
Jessica recalls, “When I told my dad I was thinking of naming her Haute Couture, he said ‘What is her barn name going to be? Vogue?’ and that stuck!”
This year, Vogue is turning heads! She won the “Plaid Horse” High Scoring Amateur Rider Award in the USHJA National Hunter Derby at Blenheim Spring Classic II, with Smith in the irons.
The mare is also traveling on her #PathToSuccess in the Blenheim EquiSports Young Hunter Series, presented by Brookway Stables, Vogue, and other 5-6 and 7-year-old hunters, have an opportunity to gain valuable miles in the hunter arena for a steal. In addition to complimentary show fees and discounted stabling, the Series boasts a total of $28,000 in total prize money.
Read on for more tidbits about this young talented mare from favorite treat to life goals…
What is Haute Couture’s favorite treat?
Vogue loves all treats. However, if she had to pick it would be Apples as she loves to work up a good apple slobber.
If she were a celebrity, who would she be and why?
Anna Wintour, of course. Like Anna, Vogue has a signature style – Vogue snaps her knees up and jumps in perfect form every time whether the fence is 2′ or 3’6″. Vogue has very strong opinions and things always go best when you convince her that what you want her to do, is actually in her best interest vs just trying to “tell” her to do something. She also has no issues making it clear when someone is wrong – for example, she will eagerly trot after me for the jog, BUT if anyone makes the mistake at clucking at her as we go into the ring, she leaps into the canter in protest.
Is she outgoing or introverted/ talkative or shy?
She is definitely outgoing and talkative. Whenever she sees me in the barn aisle she nickers and has made many good friends with her stablemates. She absolutely LOVES ponies and always wants to say hi to them – sometimes I have to remind her that seeing a pony isn’t an excuse to get completely distracted from her work!
Would she rather eat or compete?
Eat. When people walk by her at the in-gate she always does her best impersonation of a Labrador begging for a treat.
What would be her favorite subject in school and why?
Science. She’s curious and analytical and likes to understand how things work. For example, she enjoys pushing down the top of my tack trunk just to watch it close.
What are her goals in life?
Spend many sound and healthy years as a top contender in the AO / Small Junior Hunters and International Hunter Derbies, then spend a few years packing some kids around who spoil her rotten and let her enjoy regular bareback rides, at some point compete in and obviously win a couple of lead line classes and eventually retire to somewhere with large grass pastures and lots of human and horse friends.
To find out more about Haute Couture’s owner, click here and read the fantastic article by The Plaid Horse. Vogue and Jessica are also featured midway through the Blenheim Highlight Video about the USHJA National Hunter Derby.
Written by Alyssa Bansbach