Thursday, February 10, 2011


Infinite Sadness Is a Model Horse

Something is happening right now, everywhere, all around you. People are taking pictures of their model horses and entering them in internet competitions. Dozens of these "virtual collectors' events" take place around the world every month.

I stumbled upon these tips on how to enter:

Try to make the horse look like it is alive and in a real show

Well, obviously. And well done! For the advanced player:

Another tip is to choose complementary colors; if the horse is chestnut or palomino, for example, a dark hunter green backdrop looks lovely, while bays and grays really shine against a navy blue piece of cloth.

Groups like TOPSA (Totally Online Photo Show Association) and MEPSA (Model Equine Photo Showers Association) have been putting on pony shows for over a decade.

Here are some past champions.

Infinite Sadness

Last Caress

Cocaine Rio

And the inevitable wild card, Carringal Autumn Leaves. It's like no one even wants to say it. (She's a unicorn!)

One day, you're buying the occasional horse object, and blogging about such topics with one eyebrow raised. The next you are devoting all waking hours to winning every model horse photo contest you can find, while raising real live miniature horses out back, and knitting hair from their manes into more miniature horses. Not sure which day today will be, but I feel something slipping, something sliding.

18 Comments / Post A Comment


I had hundreds of those Breyer model horses as a kid. They really are pretty lifelike. And you can get the working stable with tiny bales of hay and everything! But, you know...I was a kid.


Still better than the people who get those creepy life-like baby dolls and carry them around like they're actually children.

Bonnie Downing

Oh much better! I don't at all see myself going down that road. All my creepy possible future selves are really into small, fake and real, animals. Never small fake or real humans.


Oh, and the ones who put their fake babies on their fake horses and talk baby to both.


I'm pretty sure at some point I will have an apartment full of stuffed animals, each with their own name, backstory, and of course, "voice."

But even that is not as creepy as those dolls!


I went to college with a girl who was way, way into My Little Ponies - like, she had an online second life where she was a pony and had a pony boyfriend (actually, I think they were married but they didn't have sex because they were too young?) and pony friends and they were (sometimes) other real people (pony boyfriend/husband was not a real person) and they'd all be online being ponies together.

We were all really glad when she discovered the Society for Creative Anachronism.

Das Awesome

I loved Breyer horses. I even got their quarterly magazine JAH: Just About Horses, which was chock full of the results of the model horse competitions.

I was always jealous of the people who were so talented they could resculpt and repaint a stock model into something ten times as elaborate.

I was a weird kid.

rebecca the brave

I was one of those breyer girls, and when i found about these online competitions, one of my friends (old friends-- we played with our breyers together from second grade...on) and I dusted them off and did some Glamour Shots. We posted our versions here:

Bonnie Downing

I especially love the first one with the little dog and cat.


Can I just say that these are amazing?


"Graaand Champions! The most beautiful horses IN THE WORLD!"

Does anyone remember that jingle? I sing it out loud all the time and nobody ever knows what I'm talking about.

Ms. Take

Last Caress made it to the championships? It looks like someone just put the horse on their kitchen counter and took a photo. I mean, if you're going to spend your time entering photo contests for fake mini horses, you might as well go all in.

Bonnie Downing

Perhaps she was chosen there, as she was here, on the merits of her evocative name.


Bonnie dear? If we could get updates on the recovery of your antique horse figurine, I'd really appreciate it.

Bonnie Downing

Update: the horse is is still lying there, wrapped in plastic bandages , as I blog. More soon!

Internet Girl

Breyer Horses: A Cautionary Tale

One of my friends growing up had ten billion of these, all over her room. She even had real horses and went to horse shows and stuff, which you would think would be way better than collecting fake horses, but no. She got like ten new ones every christmas.

She got pregnant at 17, had a shotgun wedding, and now lives in her inlaws basement and THESE PLASTIC THINGS ARE STILL FAKE-RUNNING ON SHELVES EVERYWHERE. In the basement.

The end.


Wow. Where do you find this stuff?!

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