How to do Quarter Marks on your Horse

Mastering perfect quarter marks: Show ready in 6 simple steps

Achieving stunning quarter marks doesn’t require magic—it’s all about technique and the right tools. We asked Hairy Pony Ambassador, Ebony Darnell to give us a comprehensive guide on how to achieve quarter marks that will make heads turn.

Choosing the right Quarter marks for your horse

The goal of quarter marks is to enhance the roundness of the hindquarters and the symmetry of the horse’s overall proportions. The marks you make will affect the way your horse's body looks, for example, if your marks are on too much of an angle your horse will appear to have a sloping hind quarter. To ensure you are complimenting your horse:

  • Look at his confirmation to see if there are areas you can “enhance” with different angles and marks.
  • For horses with sloped hindquarters, create quarter marks with horizontal lines parallel to the ground, countering the slope and giving the appearance of a more level and muscular hind quarter.
  • For flatter hindquarters, follow a sloped line to enhance the illusion of more angle.
  • When making shark teeth patterns, adjusting their size and placement can compensate for a long or short hip. Fewer and larger teeth, positioned slightly further toward the hind quarter, make the hindquarter appear shorter.
  • Smaller, narrower teeth closer to the flank lengthen the hindquarter's appearance for horses with shorter hips.

Also, note that the class you are entering will determine the kind of quarter marks you do. For a Show Hack and Show Pony the traditional quarter marks are an upside-down V checkerboard pattern, just like Ebony demonstrates below. Show hunter classes often have simpler, bigger, and freer marks.

quarter mark tools

What you will need:

Step 1: Use the Hairy Pony Flick Brush to remove any dirt or loose hair from the coat.

Step 2: Spray coat with the Hairy Pony Quarter Marker Spray until it is damp. A wet coat will produce better quarter markers.

 Step 3: Make the shark’s teeth Using the Hairy Pony Quarter Marker Brush, start at the hip of your horse and brush up against the hair. Then, at the same point, brush down diagonally towards the hoof. Next, brush up to meet the last point down. Repeat this until there are three or four shark’s teeth, depending on the size of the hindquarters.

Step 4: Make your checks Using the Hairy Pony Quarter Marker Comb, select the square size you’d like to proceed with. Start by getting as close to the spine as possible where the hindquarter begins. Using the size you have chosen, pull the comb down to the size of your choice and continue along the spine leaving the space of a checker in between each new checker. Continue your way down the horse’s hind end until you reach where your sharks’ teeth begin.

Step 5: To finish your quarter markers, do a half-moon where the tail starts. This will give the horse the “apple bum” effect.

Step 6: Final touches! Make your hard work shine with the Hairy Pony Shimmer Spray – it will add effortless sheen without attracting dust!

Ebony’s Pro Tip: Use quality products, and practice until you’re happy with the outcome. Play with different patterns until you find which one is best suited to your horse!

Remember, the key to mastering quarter marks is understanding what works for your horse's build. Experiment with patterns and sizes to find what complements your horse best. Quarter marks are an art form that, with practice and quality products, will take your horse's show presentation to the next level!

You can follow Ebony Darnell from Illuminate Show Prep Here:

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