Florida candlemaker Ashley Hall loves her family, equestrian décor and her loyal Paint Horsecompanion.
By Raquel Lynn
Step inside Ashley Hall’s well-appointed traditional home in Winter Park, Florida, and you’ll immediately notice carefully curated equestrian décor in every room, filled with the wonderful aroma of hand-poured soy candles lovingly crafted by Ashley. When she isn’t occupied fulfilling orders for the most prominent candle brand in the equine industry—Grey Horse Candle Company—Ashley sneaks away to the barn to spend time with her other love, Blue Moon Over Texas, a sorrel overo gelding affectionately known as “Cowboy.”
Always a Horse Girl
Ashley was raised on a small Thoroughbred breeding farm on the eastern shore of St. Michaels, Maryland. A passionate lifelong equestrian, Ashley’s mom, Susan, spent her college years as aracehorse exercise rider. The family focus was always on Thoroughbreds; Paint Horses were never on Ashley’s radar until much later in life, when Ashley met Cowboy and his owner Aly in 2015 after having her third son and yearning to get back in the saddle again.
“I started riding Cowboy; I started leasing him and fell in love with him,” Ashley said. “We always joke that Cowboy is the gateway horse because whoever rides him always ends up wanting their own horse.”
It wasn’t long until Cowboy worked his magic and Ashley decided she needed her own horse to love and spoil. She went back to her familiar Thoroughbred roots and purchased “Channing,” a green, 5–year–old off–the–track Thoroughbred gelding with a bit of an attitude. He was a handful, constantly testing her seat and patience. In December 2017, a devastating fall off Channing sent Ashley straight to the emergency room—she broke her back, pelvis, sacrum and had a concussion.
“I was home–bound for a few months; of course, I missed the barn so much and wasn’t able to ride,” Ashley said. “I had to face the facts that I had to sell my horse because he wasn’t right for me. It was a really, really hard time.”
This is an excerpt from the full article—get the whole story in the Fall 2021 Chrome magazine, which is sent to all current APHA members. Not a member? Join or renew at apha.com/join.