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Saddle blankets are just one of the many things necessary to properly take care of riding horses. The saddle blankets help to prevent the saddle from chafing the horse’s back. It also absorbs moisture from the horse’s sweat when on long trail rides, making the horse much more comfortable. If you can cut and sew a blanket stitch, you can make your own saddle blankets. When choosing fabric for your saddle blankets, go with a wool or similar fabric that is soft and breathable. It will provide the most comfort for your horse.
Lay out your fabric and take some measurements. Mark with chalk to make a 34-inch by 36-inch rectangle.
Cut the rectangle out of the wool using the scissors. Cut the edges of the wool as straight as possible, since you will not be turning the ends under as you normally would with other fabrics.
Finish the edges of your saddle blanket by sewing a blanket stitch.
Thread your needle with a six-strand, 20-inch length of embroidery thread. Wrap the ends of the thread around your first finger. Roll it off with your thumb to make a knot in the end of the thread.
Start sewing the blanket stitch. Insert your needle through the back to the front of the blanket, ¼ inch from the edge. Sew a stitch around and up through the edge of the wool to secure the thread.
Insert the needle from the back, ¼ inch over and back from the edge, on the diagonal from the first stitch.
Loop the excess thread under the needle and pull the thread through the blanket completely to form your first blanket stitch.
Move over another ¼ inch and repeat.
Sew the blanket stitch all the way around the edge of the saddle blanket, knotting and replacing the thread whenever necessary.
- Riding Lesson image by Allen Stoner from Fotolia.com