by: Brian Toohey
Available in 1 1/2" width Black, Luggage Tan and Dark Brown
Currently available in White pebbled and Brown Matte
Other colors and widths can be special ordered in this buckle style.
Three years ago, Toohey was shifting his design focus from jewelry and handbags to luxury leather belts. Now his men and women’s belt collection has grown to include the equestrian market as well.
“I have an affinity for the equestrian world,” he says. “I rode as a boy, and so when I design, much of my design has an equestrian feel.”
Toohey first introduced his equestrian line at Old Salem Farm in North Salem, as well as in Saugerties and other area towns, meeting with immediate success.
“The belts were selling like crazy,” he says. “And I soon realized that it would not be as productive for me to run to all of these events around the country. So I decided to do a wholesale show for the equestrian market.”
Toohey sells his belts to stores nationwide, which will soon include the Exceptional Equestrian. The American-made belts are composed of fine Italian leather, with saddle leather for the liner. The saddle leather, Toohey says, makes the belts age beautifully.
“This is all made in America, and I know that the quality I’m producing rivals the best in the world,” he says.
All of the belt buckles — many of which resemble stirrups — are custom-crafted locally as well. The belts are currently available in brown, black, luggage tan, soft orange and periwinkle blue, with more colors soon to come. In addition to belts, the collection also includes leather wristband accessories.
And though perfect for equestrians, the belts are versatile, Toohey says.
“There is an excellent crossover appeal, so it’s a belt that they’re wearing as they’re riding, but it’s a belt that they can wear also in fashion.”
The inspiration for these belts is the integration of sculpture and utility. Shape, form and function come together to create a visual harmony that expresses its true character. Each piece seems to have a story of its own.
Made from Italian leather and using the very finest full vegetable tanning. Saddle leather is used for the lining, so the belt will actually improve with wear. The buckles are triple plated and finished in real rhodium which is tarnish free and durable. The hook closure has been perfectly refined so it will never pop open, yet is easy to adjust. The Buckle lies flat for a smooth look under your show coat as well.
The extra belt length slides underneath and is held with a single keeper, instead of having the belt flapping out in the front. This makes for a very clean look and allows for 7 holes of adjustment instead of the traditional 5, so you can wear the belt at both the waist or hip with jeans. Because of this, the style crosses over beautifully from riding to fashion.
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