Hey there it's Emma again..
This time I decided to show how I plait a tail.
It is something I taught myself to do two years ago before I groomed at badminton horse trials as I was determined my horse was going to look extra smart.
First you need a horse with a big non pulled tail.. Personally I like it when the tails are really clean but maybe for the first times you try don't wash it as the dirt makes the hairs easier to hold on to whilst you try find a way with your fingers.
Make sure the tail is brushed. You should then take a damp sponge and wet (slightly) the top making sure you include the hairs under the side .
Then take in your left hand a small section of hair from the side at the top.. Hold it tight between the thumb and index finger , take with the right hand the same amount of hairs on the right side and pull them across so that you put them between the thumb and index finger again on the left hand , you then need to take another section of hair from the right side pulling it over the top of the left side, holding it again in the left hand take the piece between the index finger and the thumb in the right hand and pull it tight , then use the same fingers for holding the next piece of hair and fold it over into the right hand.. You then need to take another piece of hair from the left side and pull it tight into the right hand.. Keep doing this - taking a piece from each side and folding it over each time until the plait is the length you want it.. There is many ways to end a tail plait.. Personally I just hold the end tight and them put a band around it and leave it like that.. Otherwise when you stop taking pieces from the side keep plaiting the hairs down until the bottom and then fold it once up under the bottom of the tail plait securing it with a needle and thread.. Or fold this long plait up totally very small and tuck it underneath the tail plait .. All of this will actually sound confusing but if you watch the videos you will find its not as hard as it sounds
When I am happy with the plait I usually put hairspray on it and then leave a tail bandage on until the competition/ veterinary inspection starts.. If the tail is dirty at the sides and you can still see the dirt it's possible to pour some baby oil on there before putting the tail bandage and this will give it a really good shine once it is removed.
You can plait the tail in anyway you want it by taking big sections or small sections of hair from the sides.. On the videos I just took small sections as this is the way that I prefer.
As always I have enclosed some photos of plaits that I have done before to show you what they can look like..
I hope by next month your horses all have pretty plaited tails.