Guidelines for Proper Personal Turnout with the Old Dominion Hounds
Over the years, many subscribers have questioned what is proper attire for the Old Dominion Hounds. We hope the following guidelines are helpful.
First and foremost, any attire should be well-fitted and clean. Boots should be polished.
Boots: Brown, black (rubber or leather), New Market, or jodhpur boots with jodhpurs are permitted. Please remember to use your Armor All™ to keep those rubber boots gleaming. Field boots are acceptable at the Old Dominion Hounds, but black dress boots are more traditional and may be preferred at other hunts. Brown or patent-topped boots are not proper until regular hunting season. If one is on a budget and can only afford one pair of boots, a plain black pair is always appropriate.
Jackets: Proper hacking jackets (brown, blue, or gray tweed cut as a short riding coat ((no belt or pleats)). Cut in center rear (or at back on both sides) to avoid bunching up on saddle) are required during cub hunting season. In extreme heat, jacket and neckwear may be excused at the meet by the Master. Please keep your jacket and neckwear on if you are wearing a T-shirt. Under the jacket, you may wear:
- shirt with stock (white or colored)
- shirt with tie
- shirt with choker (ladies only)
- ODH accepts proper fitting turtlenecks
Hats: The MFHA has “strongly suggested a helmet with chin harness fastened.” ODH supports such safety measures. The alternatives are also accepted: cap without harness, bowler, and black velvet or rayon-covered caliente. Ribbons at the back should be sewn up except for masters or staff, whose cap ribbons should hang down. Unless close cut, hair should be tucked up under the hat, or done up in a bun, then covered with a hair net.
Breeches: Brick, beige, or canary (i.e., proper hunt-colored) breeches or jodhpurs are accepted. Colors such as blue, green, black, or purple, or patterns such as plaid or check are unacceptable.
Regular Hunting (Opening Meet onwards)
Boots: Black boots are always acceptable. Black field boots are permitted by ODH, but black dress boots may be preferred at other hunts. Brown-topped boots are proper for gentlemen in scarlet or black frock coats (formal), or female staff members in scarlet. Patent-topped boots are proper for women in frock coat or shad belly.
Breeches: Breeches should be of proper hunting color (as above), and a white stock should always be worn, secured by a plain horizontal gold stock pin. A black velvet helmet with harness is recommended, but a hunt cap without harness, a top hat for gentlemen in scarlet, a top hat for women in shad belly, or a bowler with black informal hunt coat are also acceptable.
Colors: If one has been awarded colors, a woman may wear scarlet on her collar (either a dark blue or black coat is acceptable). Men do not wear colored collars except on scarlet frock coats. The Old Dominion Hounds allow women to wear metal (silver— colored) buttons on jackets and vests. Men may wear metal (silver-colored) buttons on a black or scarlet frock coat and on vests. If one is wearing one’s colors, brick breeches are required.