|Regal on the left, Parlanti on the right. Breeches by Annie's USA|
First, I am sorry my photos are dark. I really hoped I could do a great comparison for you all, but I only had time at night to take photos, and well... it's dark at night. But I will post them nice and big so hopefully that helps!
If you're a horse person who shows hunt seat, you've likely heard of Parlanti
. They make both custom boots and an off the rack version. They're kind of the IT BOOT right now. They run around $1000 for off the rack and $1400 for a basic custom boot. The shoe on the right in the photo above is the Parlanti pair. The boot on the left is the Regal from Tuffrider
. It sells for $289.00 and is available only as an off the rack shoe.
My Parlanti boot is the off the rack version. It is a size 36 (US 6), extra tall, and extra wide. I find it odd that I would wear an extra tall boot, being 5'2", but I think it relates to the size of my feet which are small. The extra wide is less surprising! Haha! Sturdy legs. The Regal boot is a size 6 standard leg. You'll notice the Parlanti boot is a touch taller. Now that you've read all the details, let's see some pictures!
The Regal came with inflatable boot trees which for photo sake looks nicer. The trees I put in the Parlanti's are making them look wrinkly and flat... try to ignore that. So at first glance these boots really look very similar. And I have to be honest they kind of are! The Regal boot has grainier leather, and clearly is a lesser quality. However, it is also a lot softer and will be much easier to break in. The tab on the top that holds the zipper in place, is a bit smaller and more refined (aka: attractive) on the Parlanti boot also.
Is it just me, or is the Parlanti more photogenic? The Regal photos all look a little blurry! Neither boot is blurry in real life, I assure you. The boot tops are pretty similar. As mentioned earlier. I think the tab on the Parlanti boot is a little prettier, but still, very similar. In this closer photo, you can really see the difference in the leathers.
Ok, I take it back. Clearly, I'm just a bad photographer... The Regal is less blurry in the foot photo! I really should have looked at these photos before blogging. Good thing I'm an amateur.
Again you'll notice that the Regal boot is very grainy, while the Parlanti boot is smooth like butter. The sole is heavier on the Parlanti suggesting they will be more durable. I do prefer the punched toe on the Regal boot though. The Parlanti toe cap is plain. The spur rest on the Parlanti boot is higher, and again I have to give my preference to the lower one on the Regal boot. But that is just my preference. Others may disagree. The ankle on the Regal is more generous which will be more comfortable for the break in process, but I did find them too loose. I tied the elastic laces to tighten it up, before I realized the boots also came with regular laces. I will likely swap them out. The Parlanti's did not come with extra laces, but the ankle is quite snug. I almost wish they did come with normal laces as I would like to loosen it up for breaking them in, which I can't do with the elastics. I may purchase a set of laces next time I'm at the tack store and swap them out.
One more look at the feet, this time from above:
|Regal Left, Parlanti Right|
From this vantage point, I MUCH prefer the Parlanti foot. It's more narrow and structured looking than the Regal. But I do still prefer the punched toe cap.
The elastic strip on the back of the Regal boot is SUPER STRETCHY! Hence why I can wear a regular width calf. The Parlanti elastic is slightly narrower and has less give. Hence my needing the extra wide version. I have a feeling in the long run, the Parlanti elastic will not stretch out as much, leaving these boots fitting well far into the future. The Regal boot may stretch out and become loose down the road. Hard to say at the moment, we'll have to investigate in a few months when they've both been worn quite a bit!
|Parlanti left and Regal right|
Both boots are leather lined. The Parlanti boot has a tongue by the zipper while the Regal boot does not. However, I have another Tuffrider boot, the Sport Boot
which does. And honestly the tongue can get uncomfortable depending on where your breeches end. Perhaps that's why these newer boots don't have it.
|Regal on top, Parlanti bottom|
I think the soles are nice enough on both boots. They each have enough tread but not so much you'll get caught in your stirrups. I think the Regal has a little more traditional look to it, but it doesn't much matter. You never see that side anyway!
So now I'll just post a bunch of photos of the boots on me:
|Parlanti Left, Regal Right|
It's of little consequence really, but Tuffrider gives quite a few little extras that Parlanti does not. And at the price points I find that surprising. The Regals came with the inflatable trees, extra laces and this nice boot bag pictured above. All packaged in a sturdy box. I was not able to take the box for my Parlanti's because they needed it to ship a pair of boots. Which was actually fine as I couldn't fit that box in my suitcase anyway. They gave me a bag for them, but it was just a large nylon bag. It didn't have compartments for each boot or anything. No boot trees, no extra laces. You would think for all that money they would come with something!
Until I've really tested them both in the saddle, I can't say how each will hold up. I do think based on a few things, (leather quality, elastic give, etc) that the Parlanti's will hold up better. However, enough to be worth the $700 difference? I'm not sure.
My take away initially is this: If you want to be super stylish and you show often on the A circuit, I would go with the Parlanti's. Especially if you're tough to fit as they have many more options. But if you show only occasionally, and mostly B and C shows, I think the Regal boot would more than be sufficient for you. So far, they break in a lot more easily too!
Also, if you're in the market for some fun schooling breeches, click on over to Annie's USA
. I love this Tiffany Blue pair!