Amy Miller, owner of Horse Charmer Tack Shoppe, named the shop after a group of girls came up with the name during a sleepover at the shop. (Reporter photo/Jon Goering)

Consignment tack shop opens

Published 2:31pm Monday, November 14, 2011

By CHRISTINE BOATWRIGHT / Staff Writer

CHELSEA – Amy Miller knew she could offer a needed service to the horse lovers of Shelby County when she opened the only consignment tack shop in the state.

Miller opened Horse Charmer Tack Shoppe at Cameron Oaks Farm off Shelby County 51 in the Chelsea area. The shop carries consignment horse show paraphernalia, including show clothing, saddles and more. Miller also offers new products, including gifts, designer halters, saddle covers, footwear, clothing and tools and products for horse care.

“You don’t want to buy a new saddle if the little girl’s bottom is going to outgrow it,” Miller said, as saddles can cost from $1,500 to $5,000. “To compete in this economy, you need to outfit your girls.”

To outfit a girl for a horseshow, Miller said the shirt, coat, hairnet, pants, boots and helmet cost at least $800 “just getting into the sport,” not including the horse and entry fees.

Miller learned about horse show expenses firsthand when her oldest daughter, who is now 14, began showing.

“Everything on her was borrowed,” Miller said with a laugh. “A lot of little girls outgrow shoes each month.”

Miller’s father pitches in to help his daughter’s business by scouring the Internet for deals on new or used saddles. Miller said if customers ask for a particular type of saddle, she works to accommodate.

Miller, her husband and her six children have lived in Chelsea for eight years.

“We could have tried for (a store on) 280, but for me, with six children, I need to be able to come here and not feel guilty about work,” she said of her space at Cameron Oaks Farm. “We’re out here all the time anyway.

The snack bar portion of the tack shop offers drinks and snacks for hungry horseback riders, as well as hot drinks for cold days.

“They’ve got 90-something students out here. I’ve been really surprised; they’ve been buying stuff before we’ve even opened.”

The store’s official grand opening will be Dec. 2-3, with a visit from Santa Claus. Store hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Visit Horsecharmertackshoppe.com for more information.

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