When I did my first prototype way back when, I called my pal Frankie to tell her all about it. Frankie is a trainer/instructor of 40 years, in many disciplines. She said a one-size-fits-all cover was impossible. “It can’t be done,” she said.
I changed it many times, calling her along the way. She kept saying, “I will never tell my students to buy that.” (She also said, “Don’t say ‘fits A/P and dressage,’ that’s so tacky.’”) I couldn’t catch a break from Frankie!
Finally, I went to her barn with my endlessly re-sized prototype. She was all ready to prove it would never fit her huge variety of saddles. But it did. She was suitably amazed. And apologized. We laughed. I was happy.
But… nothing is ever good enough for Frankie. “It’s not lined,” she said. “I still wouldn’t buy that.” I was about to cry. Or choke her. “You don’t get it,” Frankie said. “It has to be thicker. One place I worked, cats in the tack room would get up on the saddles to sleep. Sometimes they got into big fights and would leap from saddle to saddle, leaving horrid scratches. Major barn drama. I had my clients put a towel under their saddle covers, and life went on. But who wants to buy a fancy cover and have to stick a towel under it? Put a lining in it.” Sigh.
So, I lined it. She loved it. “I’m glad you like it,” I said. “Too bad you can’t have one. It’s off the market to you only.” We laughed. The end.