|What Makes Beval Saddlery so Unique? Our history & commitment to excellence...
What makes Beval Saddlery so unique?
The Beval era began in May 1955 when Bev Walter set up shop in a one-car garage in Bernardsville, NJ. He began traveling to local shows offering on-site repair service and products to the horse show clientele. Always observant, Bev quickly realized that the strap goods available were inadequate in quality and variety. He was determined to find a way to offer superior quality products that were not only functional & comfortable for both horse and rider, but classically beautiful as well. His quest began in England, the source of the world's best bridlery, where he designed a line of strap goods of the finest quality and sized to fit traditional American show horses. This very first line, the Gladstone, set an industry standard... a standard that remains to this day.
Bev came to the saddlery business as a horseman and technician. At that time, American saddles were produced to fit the rider, with litte consideration for the horse. During his many trips to Europe, he sought to build a saddle for the American market that would offer better fit options for horses with a comfortable & balanced fit for the rider as well. The end result was the first Beval Gladstone saddle, created with a numbered tree system to ensure a proper fit. Following the birth of the Gladstone, Beval developed a collection of saddles including the Devon, the World Cup, the LTD, the Short Stirrup, the Natural, the Princeton, and the Stamford. Each saddle offers a unique design and fit to accomodate every rider - from the smallest leadline competitor to the top Hunter & Grand Prix jumper riders. While there have been technological updates over the years, these Beval saddles still remain leaders in the industry & rider favorites today!
Bev's vision included riders as well as horses, so he introduced the double-vented show coat and stretch breeches. (Where would we be without stretch breeches today!?) His focus was always on finding ways to make riders more comfortable while preserving a classic, elegant appearance, whether it was for the show ring, hunt field or a quiet country hack. Beval's reputation for quality became renowned throughout the riding community and people came to Bernardsville from all over the East Coast to be outfitted in the most fashionable show attire.... these ideals encompass the vision behind what can be referred to as the "Beval look" - the understated elegance, correctness, and superior quality of our products that sets us apart. At this point in time, when the ultimate in style is required, we offer custom tailoring in our New Canaan, CT store.
During the late 70s, Mark Walter, Bev's son, joined the firm with some interesting ideas about the future of saddlery retailing. A successful junior rider, Mark would often be a competitor at shows where Beval would have a retail presence. He witnessed, first hand, the great convenience of a saddlery at shows and the limitations of a small, temporary retail stand. Mark's vision became reality in the form of Beval's first fully customized tractor trailer, stocked with everything a competitor might need. Starting the year in Wellington, FL then traveling north on the A-circuit, the Beval Mobile Unit soon became the local saddlery for top exhibitors who live "on the road". This constant contact with the top show horses and riders kept Mark and his staff at the heart of the industry, allowing Beval to meet their needs while developing new products and continually setting trends.
The Present & Future of Beval Saddlery...
More than 50 years later, the entire Beval family is proud of these accomplishments and excited about the future. We have grown with large retail stores in Gladstone, NJ; New Canaan, CT; North Salem, NY; Wellington, FL; & Saugerties, NY. Our Gladstone store serves as our headquarters and is also home to our very active mail-order and Web operations. We offer in-house, full-service workshop services in our Gladstone, New Canaan & Saugerties stores, in addition to on-site workshop services at most of our mobile unit show locations. As the Beval brand has become synonymous with quality, a wholesale division was added to satisfy the equipment demands outside our trading area. Beval products are available to you direct through our retail & ecommerce stores, as well as through a selection of the country's finer saddlery stores. We remain committed to offering innovative designs, superior quality & value in all our product lines.
Whether you are already one of many loyal Beval customers or new to our store, we would like to extend our deepest gratitude. It is equestrians such as yourself that have helped to make Beval Saddlery what it is today... we dedicate our continued commitment to Bev Walter and his vision, which continues to provide quality innovation & customer service to the discerning equestrian.