I love all things equestrian, but the preppy vibe isn’t really my thing. Sorry folks. So I was very excited to see a new brand on Instagram, @wildchildequestrian.
The logo drew my attention first and I thought, what a great concept! Boho meets Equestrian!I was intrigued and as a new business owner myself, I want to support small business. I reached out to the owner and creator, Samantha Roland, for an interview and she was gracious enough to tell me a little about her brand.
How beautiful is the Wild Child Equestrian logo?
Q: Tell me about your company, Wild Child Equestrian.
A: Wild Child Equestrian is an equestrian apparel company for the girls who are more boho than preppy… Think vintage, sugar skulls, turquoise, fringe, wild flowers. For the type of girls wearing lace a lace dress with a leather jacket and moto boots. For girls who look sweet but will kick your ass – in and out of the show ring 😉
Q: What inspired you to start your company?
A: From a young age, I have always known I’ve wanted to run my own business. I come up with new ideas weekly on inventions or new businesses I could do “if only.” “If only I had all the skills,” “if only I knew the right people,” etc. Then one day it occurred to me “I think I could do this.”
I work 9 to 5 at an advertising agency where I market other people’s brands and ideas, so after three years I’ve learned some skills. I mentioned my idea to a few of my friends at the barn and everyone was super excited about it – so there were my people. It all kind of came together, and I knew that if I tried – I could turn this into something.
Q: What sets you apart from other equestrian brands?
A: I think our attitude will set us apart. I think we can appeal to equestrians of all disciplines whether it be hunters, dressage, barrel racers, show jumpers, or vaulters… Wild Child is about the Equestrian spirit not a specific discipline.
Q: Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?
A: My childhood riding instructor, (and soon to be Aunt) has always been a huge source of inspiration for me. She taught me the foundation of who I am as a rider and was there to witness me growing up into who I am, both in and out of the ring.
I didn’t realize at the time (I was about 8 years old) but when she started to teach me I was (more or less) her first serious client. Not long before that, she decided to quit her job as an Accountant at a pretty large firm and took a risk to do what she really loved and made her happy…. As a young adult (with bills) I admire her guts.
Q: Who are your biggest influences?
A: George Morris – Duh?
Q: You have an OTTB named Sully (Racing Name Monster Punch) Is he the Wild Child that inspired your name? Tell us about him.
A: Sully is definitely a huge part of it… He is very much a character. He is very playful and is always into something he shouldn’t be. He’s been off the track for almost 9 years but he still struts around like “he’s the man” when he’s excited.
After a bad fall, I stopped riding for a long time and lost a lot of my confidence; especially over fences. Sully has given me my confidence back with his bravery because he does everything with all of his heart. When I get nervous now, it’s as though I can feel him telling me “just hang tight kid, I got this.” I hope that one day, I can have the same courage as my horse in all of the things I do.
Q: You’re from New Jersey. Do you compete in any local or regional horse shows? In what discipline?
A: I am only just getting back into showing locally, and we just did our first “C” rated show together at the East Freehold show grounds in the beginning of April and we were champion in the Equitation.
Now that I am getting more confident over fences I do plan on attending more shows and hopefully moving up.
Q: How do you balance work, building a business, and riding?
A: I definitely have a Type A personality… I actually work two jobs, my day job at and advertising agency and then on weekends I also help out at a construction company (because we all know horses aren’t a cheap hobby). It gets tiring but I ride or go to the barn almost every night after work. It’s how I unwind. I’ve been working on Wild Child mostly at night. I’m not much of a TV person so I don’t mind staying up late on my ipad working on designs or posting on social media. I don’t like not being busy.
Q: You work in advertising. Do you think that will help you as a business owner? If so, how?
A: Definitely. I have learned a lot about branding and what works and what doesn’t work in terms of getting yourself “out there” as a business. The advantage is being able to do just about everything myself instead of outsourcing. Plus, I have great colleagues who are willing to help and teach me.
Q: What do you think will be your biggest challenge?
A: I think the initial break into the market and converting followers and “likes” into actual purchases – which is hard for any business.
Q: How many products are currently available?
A: As of right now, only the Wild Child Equestrian logo hat in Stone is available. Most companies have a minimum quantity you have to order (which is a lot!) I wanted to start small before investing a lot of money and really want to focus on creating a buzz about the brand and establish a following. Our first round of Stone logo hats are expected to arrive by April 28th!
However, I have Wild Child Equestrian logo hats available for pre-order in both Rose and Powder. I have also started designing t-shirts in short and long sleeve, as well as a hoodie which seemed to get a lot of attention on social media.
Q: What is the best way to see and order your products?
A: Our Instagram page is our main platform – our handle is @WildChildEquestrian and our Etsy page is the best way to order products as of now. For behind the scenes details and info into the brand and my life as an equestrian, we are also on Twitter @WildChildEQ. I hope to have a website in the future but we will see how things progress!
It’s official, I’m very excited to see what this brand has in store. I can tell you I am loving the hat, which I wore on my equestrian vacation to Vermont. Owned and operated by a female equestrian in New Jersey? I’m prancing with excitement!
I’m thinking Wild Child Equestrian is one to watch……what do you think?