Animo – Premium products at a premium price tag, but are they worth it?
So, let me discuss with you the brand that is Animo. I will be honest and admit that all I really knew about them until this weekend just gone was that they were considered one of the most premium brands in the equestrian world. I knew they carried what I considered to be a hefty price tag. And that was about it. But I was lucky enough this weekend to accompany my sponsor Equissimo to Venice to view the new AW19 collection and my eyes were seriously opened in so many ways, and I would like to share these with you because now I feel I finally understand the Animo brand and I will admit here and now I am a total convert!
So, let me back track a bit. My preconceptions regarding Animo were based almost purely on assumptions. I assumed that the higher price tags were purely because of the name. The name is synonymous with professional riders who, let’s face it, have more money and backing than little old me with my two horses on a little DIY yard in Norfolk. I didn’t think the price tag was necessarily justified when there were other high quality brands available, like Kentucky or Kingsland at a more realistic price point for the average rider like me, and almost everyone I know.
Now, let us consider the above point. Take for example the Animo Wigo saddle pad. It carries an RRP of £95.
Now you, like me, may have considered that a touch pricey for a saddle pad. It’s maybe a little plain. No bling, but does have a lovely big red Animo logo so everyone will know you are sporting a premium brand. But then consider you can buy a lovely Kingsland or Anna Scarpati saddle pad at around the £70 price point, both lovely high quality brands and in a range of lovely colours and designs. So why then, should we spend that little bit extra of our hard earned cash for that lovely Animo logo? Let me tell you why……
The primary concern for me when buying kit is ‘will this be comfortable for my horse and if it will then how will it benefit them?’ One thing you just don’t see when buying kit online is the quality of the materials involved. At Animo every fabric is chosen for a reason. Durability, wicking, shock absorbing; you name it, it has been considered within the design and fabrics that are used. Even just touching them you can tell they are of a far superior quality. The thickness of the saddle pads makes them feel unlike anything else, yet while they are thick they do not affect the fit of saddle as the materials compress and absorb pressure.
And the same thought and quality has gone into everything from the bandages to the fly veils. The range is manufactured on site at Animo and every item is fully checked to avoid defects and ensure all items meet their high quality standards.
The range of breeches and jackets that Animo are famous for are evolving with every collection. From the materials used to the design and cut of the clothing. Every new collection they release will guarantee you are seeing something new and innovative that will be improved from the previous one. All are made in Italy, by hand. There are no mass produced runs of items, just a small team of machinists finishing each and every item to the highest standard. Hours of pattern cutting and sewing go into each product by this small team of talented people.
The finish you cannot even begin to comprehend. Every stitch, every button, the piping and trims, many of which are fully customisable, are out of this world. All the crystal work is genuine Swarovski and if one crystal happens to fall off (which it probably won’t) then Animo will replace the crystal for free if you return it to them. The way the crystals catch the light is unrivalled, and yes you will pay extra for that but I really cannot impress upon you the sheer beauty that results in.
I suppose in Summary it’s fairly simple. Yes you are indeed paying for a brand name. But that brand name is backed up with handmade high quality items using the very finest materials that ensure that not only are the products truly beautiful, but are also highly functional and at the cutting edge of technology for both horse and rider.