There’s this thing about fixer-upper farms – they need to be fixed up. And while my husband and I are enjoying the process of renovating and updating our 90 year old house, it can be a strain on the piggy bank, if you know what I mean. As with most old homes, nothing is easy; we run into unexpected snags with every project.

What this means is at the end of every project, say, for example, redoing an entire room, is that I’m not left with much of a ‘decoration budget.’ And that’s when things get exciting around here, folks! Yes, I turn into a scavenger, which is actually quite fun. Since I’m an equestrian, I want my home to reflect my passion, and I don’t have to open up my wallet to do so. All I need is a trip to my tack room.

I love repurposing a variety of equestrian pieces that are no longer needed. You know all those extra bits you have lying around? That saddle that doesn’t fit your current horse but you just can’t bear to sell? That hunt cap you scored at an estate sale for $1? Your OTTB’s old racing plates? Yes, all those things – clean them up and bring them inside!

On my favorite wall in the house are two pictures: one of my mare, Misty, and another of my German Shepherd, Izzie. They are black and white canvas prints and work well side-by-side. What brings them together, however, are Misty’s D-ring snaffles that hang on either side. (Why Misty had two of the exact same bit, I’ll never know. And of course I swapped out both for a loose ring).

My home office is another equestrian catch-all spot. On one of my bookshelves lives a pair of racing goggles that are probably 25 years old; they sit alongside the Secretariat Breyer horse I received on my 11th birthday. A horse girl is never too old to display her Breyers.


When you do your spring cleaning in the next few months, try and look at your old tack and unused pieces with a different eye. After a thorough cleaning, would that bit look beautiful gleaming on a shelf with your books? Could you hang it in your hallway? How would it look propped up against your hutch? Your tack room is probably a treasure trove of home décor just waiting to be discovered!

Laurie Berglie was born, raised, and currently resides in Maryland. She enjoys renovating her fixer-upper farm, reading horse books, and training and competing her two OTTBs, Misty, her wild mare, and Bailey, her easy going gelding. Laurie also loves pampering her first pony, who is now 33 years young! Laurie began her blog, The Maryland Equestrian in 2011 under the name, “The Sassy Grey.” Initially, it was about the training adventures of her grey OTTB mare, Misty. And, boy, were there some adventures! Through the years, however, the blog began to take a different shape into the equestrian lifestyle guide it is today. She happily shares her farm with her three horses, two cats, German Shepherd, and husband, James, who is very supportive of her extreme addiction to all things equestrian.