Posts Tagged ‘tack trunk’

The L O N G ‘ish Saga of the Tack Trunk

WAY back in December I ordered a custom tack trunk. My first one ever. I was beyond excited. The retailer (Centerline Style, I’m not going to tag them because their customer service was horrible at the end and I don’t want to send them any business) was having a 20% off sale which included custom tack trunks and it was a deal I just could not refuse.

I emailed the store (which turns out was the owner) with my myriad questions before I placed my order. All my questions were answered quickly and succinctly so I felt “safe” in ordering the trunk. To make a very long story somewhat short, the great customer service lasted for a few weeks and then the customer service fell off the planet. I last received a response to my question about a delivery date in mid-January and it wasn’t an answer, it was a “here is a $40 store credit to thank you for your patience”, which frankly made no sense to me. I placed my order on December 17. The website stated a 6-8 week turnaround, which would have my trunk arriving somewhere between January 26 and February 9.

I had a show the first weekend in February and was REALLY hoping I would have it by then, which would have been towards the 6 week end of the timeframe. The days leading up to the show I emailed, called, online chatted and contacted the retailer online to no avail. No one answered the phone ever. No one returned my call. No one responded to my email. Needless to say I was getting angry and a bit worried.

The week after the show I called the trunk’s manufacturer. They were AMAZING! Turns out they hadn’t even gotten my order until January 2, so the 6-8 week window got pushed out two more weeks. Thanks Centerline Style. They gave me the current status of the trunk’s build and finish time and told me to expect it to be ready to ship in a week and a half. That timeframe had the trunk arriving  sometime between February 16 and 23. I had another show the last weekend and February and was super excited to have my trunk. Finally.

The week of the show arrived and I contacted Centerline again. Still no response. No one answered the phone. No one responded to my email. I was starting to get REALLY angry. I contacted the manufacturer again and got some really good and really awful news. My trunk had been done since February 14, but the retailer wasn’t responding to communication from the manufacturer so they couldn’t ship my trunk. Now I was furious. I left a 1 star Google review, contacted the Better Business Bureau, and lastly contacted my credit card that I had used to buy the trunk. You’ll never guess how this ends……….. within 24 hours of contacting my credit card I received this email from Centerline,

“I just wanted to let you know that your tack trunk finally shipped yesterday! Don’t hesitate to ask if you need anything at all, we can’t wait for it to arrive!

To be clear, the trunk actually shipped the day after I got this email. I don’t think the retailer was trying to pull a fast one on me, but I do think they are understaffed and have bitten off far more than they can chew. Retail in 2018 is tough. The Dovers and the SmartPaks of the world do a pretty good job of answering their phone and email in a timely manner, especially when you order something that costs more than $1,000. I’m sure many people have horror stories of the big equestrian retailers and I’m not here to start an argument, but to go over a month not responding to a customer’s requests for information on any order is unacceptable.

In happier news, here are my “unboxing” photos from when my trunk finally arrived last week. In March. 10 1/2 weeks after I ordered it. Boot City is highly entertained by online unboxing photos and videos, so these photos are dedicated to him.

The delivery vehicle. For some reason he didn’t want to drive up my driveway. Some people have no sense of adventure.

 

I had to finagle in out of the bed of the pickup to be careful to not drop it! It wasn’t crazy heavy, but it wasn’t light. That is Punky the goat in the background. She was very helpful.

 

My first glimpse….. of Styrofoam……..but I have to admit that it was very well packaged.

 

I had to lay the box on its side to slide the trunk out. I put cardboard under it to be sure to not scratch it at all.

 

Ta da!!!!!!!!!!! It is a beauty! But, of course, Centerline messed up the order. You see, my initials are “TNT”. The coolest initials you could possibly have, so I wanted it on my trunk as “TNT”. The way it is on the trunk now is the “correct” way, but not how I ordered it. I’m not going to send it back, because Lord knows how long it would take for them to fix that. But I will be bringing it to their attention…..(them being Centerline, I know the manufacturer just did what they were told)

 

Last, but not least, the inside. Murtagh approves, but I don’t think there will be room for him in there once it is filled with all my horsey goodies!

 

My advice is to shop at Centerline Style with extreme caution. Kelly at Hunky Hanoverian also had issues with customer service at Centerline and if you read their Google reviews, all of them in the past couple months are pretty terrible. I’m excited to have my trunk and am grateful for the discount, but I’m pretty sure the time I spent trying to wrangle my dang order cost more than I saved. We live and we learn!

Bevel Summer Sale!

One of my most favourite places to shop for horsey items is Beval. I’ve not ever been to the actual stores on the East Coast, but I’ve gotten lots of stuff off their website and in January had a saddle fitter come out and I bought the Beval Artisan saddle for fox hunting because I didn’t want to use my brand new Antares saddle for hunting. I’ve found Beval products to be of great quality and most of their leather goods are made in England.

Right now they are having a fantastic summer sale until July 31 so this post is my Beval wish list.

First on my list is the Heritage Wide Caveson Hunter Bridle. My horsey bestie has a few Beval bridles and they are beautiful. As Coco heads into her hunter career I’d love to get her a brand new spiffy bridle. I’ve been on the fence about the wide caveson bridles and now I think Coco would look quite lovely in one.

Bevel Heritage Wide Caveson Hunter Bridle. Photo from Beval website.

Bevel Heritage Wide Caveson Hunter Bridle. Photo from Beval website.

I’ve longed for a Witney cooler to use after cold fox hunts or at winter horse shows. Alas they are included in the summer sale! You could also use one in your house as a throw blanket or as an accent to bedding. These are made in England. They remind me of the races at Newmarket and old paintings by Stubbs and Munnings.

Witney square cooler

Witney square cooler

I recently bought new Grand Prix paddock boots (Made in the USA!) so would love to get some nice new half chaps to go with them. The leather used to make these looks like it would feel just like butter.

Beval Puissance Half Chaps

Beval Puissance Half Chaps

In all honesty I think GPA helmets are rather ugly, however the Speed Air Evolution is on super duper sale so would be worth trying out!

GPA Speed Air Evolution helmet

GPA Speed Air Evolution helmet

I need a tack trunk, a vinyl sided one that matches my trainer’s colors, but I’d also like a plain wood one for at home and to take to fox hunts. This one would fit the bill perfectly. The classic dark wood and basic style are timeless. Add a brass nameplate and it would be absolutely perfect.

Medium Delux Trunk (they spelled deluxe wrong, not me!)

Medium Delux Trunk (they spelled deluxe wrong, not me!)

So there you have it, my current favourites at Beval. If you are on the market for some horsey goodies from saddles and bridles to riding apparel to horse apparel definitely check out this Beval sale. I’m in no way shape or form being compensated for this post, I just really like their stuff and their customer service. Happy shopping!