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Pink Equine Guide to buying Mattes Custom Saddle Pads

Mattes Custom Saddle Pads

8 Reasons you should purchase Mattes Custom Saddle Pads

These days there are so many different brands of saddle pad available for sale that choosing the right pad can become a nightmare. Well, you need to look no further, because Mattes make the best custom saddle pads and in our opinion are head and shoulders above the competition. We are excited to be able to offer them alongside our own range of horse tack.

Want to know why Mattes make the best custom saddle pads? Here are Eight reasons.


Functional Saddle pad design – Many years of experience have gone into the design of Mattes custom saddle pads. The shape of each horse saddle pad is anatomically correct, sitting perfectly on the horse’s back, with a high wither cut, preventing any pressure on the wither area.


The manufacturing process and quality of Materials used – All Mattes custom saddle pads feature a double layer of POLYFLEX® a polyester non-woven felt fabric and either 180g/m² blended cotton twill or 400g/mm² velvet quilt that does not fade, even after the pad has been washed or cleaned many times. In addition, Mattes only uses the top 5% of merino lambskin in their pads. Natural wool ensures an even temperature over the horse’s skin.


Mattes Patented Correction® System – Enables the insertion of shims to assist with maintaining balance and straightness for horses that may change their shape throughout the year.


Trademarked Saddle Pad Composition – Customers can choose from several clever systems that have been designed to assist both horse and rider, such as “Saddle Fix”, “Spine-Free®”, “Mattes MER system”, “EWWA Spine”, and the “PM System”


The bespoke nature of Mattes custom saddle pads – Why not enjoy a unique horse saddle pad? Choose from 39 different shades of cotton and cotton sheen quilts or 16 colours in velvet. Up to 3 rows of rope trim and bindings in a choice of over 40 different colours, as well as 33 different colours of sheepskin.


Something to suit everyone – Mattes offers patterns to fit the general purpose, jumping or dressage saddles, and in 9 different styles, Eurofit, Square, Numnah, Half Pad, Western, Endurance, Treeless, Trekking, and Spanish Baroque.


Mattes the cost-efficient choice – Mattes custom saddle pads are not as expensive as you think. The price for a standard saddle pads and numnahs is less than £65.00, whilst the Half Pad starts for less than £50.00. If looked after these pads will last retain their colour and shape and last for years, making them an extremely cost-effective purchase.


Mattes the most comfortable custom made saddle pads for your horse – Whilst fashion and style are important, comfort for your horse is king! Mattes prioritise fit and form over everything, so why look anywhere else?

Mattes Custom Saddle Pads we sell

Square pads | Eurofit Pads | Numnahs | Half Pads | Baroque Pads | Trekking Pads | Western Pads | Endurance Pads | Treeless Pads | Saddle Pad Types | How to Order | About Mattes | Measuring your pad | Saddle Pad Care | FAQ |

About Saddle Pads in General

Saddle pads were originally designed to protect the saddle from sweat and horse hair and to provide a barrier between the horse and the saddle leather, wicking away sweat and keeping the saddle area cool while on horseback.

In modern times, the saddle pad is still an integral part of a horse’s tack but is also designed to look fashionable and compliment current horse and rider styles.

Pink Equine is renowned for its bespoke range of colour co-ordinated horse tack and accessories. Our attention to detail, personalized shopping experience, and bespoke manufacture, enable customers to harmonise their look and we have now partnered with saddle pad manufacturer brand E A Mattes, who match our high standards and whose saddle pads fit seamlessly with our bridle work enabling you to create a complete matching collection for your horse.

custom horse saddle pad

Aren’t Mattes Saddle Pads expensive?

Mattes Fellsattel or Mattes custom saddle pads are not as expensive as you think. The price for a standard saddle pad is less than £65.00, whilst Mattes Half Pad starts from as little as £46.00. Bearing in mind the quality of the materials used and the technical design and manufacturing process, this compares extremely favourably to many other well-known brands. The bespoke nature, quality shape, and fit of Mattes Custom saddle pads are undeniable and if cared for, will last for years, making them an extremely cost-effective purchase. Why would you choose any other brand?

Mattes Orange Velvet Saddle Pad
Mattes Blue Velvet Saddle Pad

Mattes have a wide selection of custom saddle pads to choose from, available in a variety of bespoke styles and sizes to suit all types of equestrian disciplines, from All Purpose saddle pads, Numnahs or contoured pads, Jumping saddle pads, Dressage saddle pads, and Sheepskin half pads to Western saddle pads, Icelandic saddle pads, Endurance and Treeless saddle pads. Not forgetting long-distance trekking saddle pads for long country rides. Their range of saddle pads covers a wide variety of horseback riding disciplines from racing, horse show events, hunter jumper, polo and eventing, to Western disciplines such as trail riding, barrel racing, reining, roping and cutting.

Mattes Saddle Pad Styles and Designs

Mattes Pad Styles Western

Mattes Western Pad Styles

Mattes Saddle Pad Styles Jumping

Mattes Jumping Saddle Pad Styles

Mattes Saddle Pad Styles Dressage

Mattes Dressage Saddle Pad Styles

Mattes Saddle Pad Styles All Purpose

Mattes All Purpose Saddle Pad Styles

Mattes Icelandic Pad Styles

Mattes Icelandic Saddle Pad Styles

Mattes Endurance Pad Style

Mattes Endurance Saddle Pad Style

Mattes Treeless Pad Styles

Mattes Treeless Saddle Pad Style

Mattes Custom Saddle Pads

Square Pads

As the name suggests, this pad is a classic square shape, available as a general-purpose (all-purpose) pad, a slightly deeper dressage saddle pad, or a little shorter to accommodate show-jumping saddles. The square pad is offered in Pony, Cob, Full and Extra Full sizes and looks great on any horse or pony. (see sizing below). You can choose from standard cotton, cotton sheen, or luxurious velvet quilts with or without sheepskin front and rear as well as the underside if required.

  • Back Length (all styles): Pony (47cm), Cob (54cm), Full (58cm), Extra Full (62cm)
  • Depth All Purpose: Pony (46.5cm), Cob (49.5cm), Full (51.5cm), Extra Full (51.5cm)
  • Depth Jumping: Pony (47cm), Cob (48cm), Full (50cm), Extra Full (50cm)
  • Depth Dressage: Pony (50cm), Cob (53cm), Full (56cm), Extra Full (56cm)
Square Velvet Dressage Pad

Eurofit Pads

The Eurofit pad is European in style, with more of a curved profile. It is more shaped than the square pad, but not as much as a numnah. Like the square pad, the Eurofit pad is available in general purpose, Dressage, or Jumping patterns and is also made from cotton, cotton sheen, or velvet quilt. The Eurofit pad is also offered in Pony, Cob, Full, and Extra Full Sizes and the option of sheepskin if required.

  • Back Length (all styles): Pony (47cm), Cob (54cm), Full (58cm), Extra Full (62cm)
  • Depth All Purpose: Pony (46.5cm), Cob (49.5cm), Full (51.5cm), Extra Full (51.5cm)
  • Depth Jumping: Pony (47cm), Cob (48cm), Full (50cm), Extra Full (50cm)
  • Depth Dressage: Pony (50cm), Cob (53cm), Full (56cm), Extra Full (56cm)
Eurofit Pad


Numnahs or contoured pads are carefully shaped to follow the exact contours of your saddle, so it’s important to choose the right styles to accommodate General Purpose, Dressage, or Jumping saddles. The Numnah looks amazing with sheepskin front and rear, you can choose from Pony, Cob, Full, and Extra Full and cotton, cotton sheen, or velvet as the quilt material.

  • Back Length (all styles): Pony (47cm), Cob (54cm), Full (58cm), Extra Full (62cm)
  • Depth All Purpose: Pony (46.5cm), Cob (49.5cm), Full (51.5cm), Extra Full (51.5cm)
  • Depth Jumping: Pony (47cm), Cob (48cm), Full (50cm), Extra Full (50cm)
  • Depth Dressage: Pony (50cm), Cob (53cm), Full (56cm), Extra Full (56cm)

Half pads

The half pad is as the name suggests half the size of a normal pad. It is not designed to replace a full saddle pad but is normally used in addition to one. It is helpful to horses that need more cushioning and support but is not as bulky as using two normal-size pads together.

For riders who use a combination of half pad and saddle pad. The velcro straps on the saddle pad can be replaced with slits on either side. The straps on the half pad can now be fed through the buttonhole slits in the saddle pad, securing the two bits together.  Sheepskin half pads are also available in General Purpose, Dressage, or Jumping styles and in cotton, cotton sheen, or velvet quilts. Sizes are Pony, Cob, Full, and Extra Full.

  • Back Length (all styles): Pony (47cm), Cob (54cm), Full (58cm), Extra Full (62cm)
  • Depth: Pony (20cm), Cob (21.5cm), Full (21.5cm), Extra Full (23.5cm)
Half Pad

Western saddle Pads

Traditional western saddles do not have any padding in the seating area and so a thicker saddle pad is necessary, which means that most customers order a fully lined sheepskin western pad. In the standard range of pads, the sheepskin is not detachable, whereas, in the Rio Pecos western saddle pad, the sheepskin can be easily detached for ease of washing. Western Saddle blankets are available in four styles, and in small, medium, large, extra large and XXL sizes. As well are normal western disciplines, Mattes western saddle pads are used for trail riding, barrel racing, roping and reining.

Western Round saddle pad
Western California saddle pad
Western Performer saddle pad
Western Square saddle pad

  • Back Length (all styles): Small (65cm), Medium (70cm), Large (75cm), Extra Large (80cm) XXL (85cm)
  • Depth: (all styles): (36cm) as standard with (40cm) and (45cm) available on request
Western pad Measurements
Mattes California Western Saddle Pad

Endurance Pads

Endurance riding is the sport of competitive long-distance riding and is very popular in many parts of the world. Distances covered vary from the entry level of 16km right through to 160km in a day.

Endurance saddles are made to be light as any additional weight can slow the horse down. The cut of the endurance saddle pad takes into account the extra wide and long saddle padding of endurance saddles built on an English-style tree. Endurance saddle pads are available in Cob and Full sizes, with or without sheepskin and in cotton, cotton sheen or velvet quilts.

  • Back Length (all styles): Cob (62cm), Full (67cm)
  • Depth : Cob (49cm), Full (54cm)
Endurance pad

Treeless Pads

Treeless saddles have gained in popularity over the years and Mattes have a range of treeless saddle pads to match. Developed to ensure a correct seat in a treeless saddle. These pads absorb shocks, reduce pressure and ensure that the spine can move freely with SPINEFREE®. Lambskin helps to regulate the temperature all year round. Like all other Mattes pads, the treeless pad is available in cotton, cotton sheen and velvet and two sizes cob and full.

  • Back Length (all styles): Cob (62cm), Full (67cm)
  • Depth : Cob (49cm), Full (54cm)
Treeless Pad

Trekking Pads

If you love hacking out, trekking along bridle paths, or even long-distance riding, then the Mattes trekking saddle pad is definitely for you. Based on a standard square pad, Mattes has incorporated two large pockets, allowing you to safely carry food and drink, your mobile phone, credit card, and even a small first aid kit.

The carefully designed pad means that the pockets don’t interfere with your legs or the control of your horse and feature an easy-to-open clip design. Even if you are just out for a leisurely ride, having pockets on your saddle pad, will certainly make life easier for you.

The trekking saddle pad is available in sizes S, M, L and XL. As with all Mattes Pads, you are free to choose the design of the outer side: without lambskin padding, with lambskin padding and trim at the front, with lambskin padding and trim at the back and with lambskin padding and trim at the front and back.

  • Back Length (all styles): Small (47cm), Medium (54cm), Large (58cm), Extra Large (62cm)
  • Depth: Small (46.5cm), Medium (49.5cm), Large (51.5cm), Extra Large (51.5cm)
Trekking Pad

Baroque Pads

The name Baroque is a bit misleading as this style did not come from the Baroque period. The name was given probably because of the ornate appearance and intricate designs of many of the saddles. If you have even watched the beautiful features of a Spanish breed horse, such as a Friesian, Andalusian or Lipizzaner performing classical movements, they were probably using a baroque-style saddle.

Baroque saddle pads were fashioned to flatter the beautiful features of the baroque-style saddle. This particular pad was designed to fit English Saddles, although it can be ordered for the ornate Spanish Saddles if required, the Spanish style is a little longer and comes with an underside sheepskin option only. The Baroque pad is available in cotton, cotton sheen, or velvet, dressage or all-purpose styles and in Small, Medium, Large and Extra Large.

  • Back Length (all styles): Small (47cm), Medium (54cm), Large (58cm), Extra Large (62cm)
  • Main Pad Depth (excluding skirt) – All Purpose: Small (46.5cm), Medium (49.5cm), Large (51.5cm), Extra Large (51.5cm)
  • Main Pad Depth (excluding skirt) – Dressage: Small (50cm), Medium (53cm), Large (56cm), Extra Large (56cm)
Baroque Pad


Grey Sheepskin Saddle Pad

What makes Mattes custom saddle pads so unique?

Unlike other equestrian brands, Mattes are renowned for the bespoke nature of its saddle pads and accessories. But what makes Mattes unique and the number one brand of saddle pads, is its functional saddle pad design. Saddle pads are made with a quilt, manufactured using a superior cotton twill fabric, the kind used in heavy-duty work clothing.

Inside the quilt where flexibility and durability are important is a double layer of POLYFLEX®. POLYFLEX® is a polyester non-woven felt fabric that is created through a more technical felting process. The felt is punched with a specially designed felting needle, one that has small barbs on the end. The barbs catch the polyester fibres pulling them through on themselves and inter-tangling the fibres together to create the felt fabric.

Polyester felt, is far superior to other materials such as memory foam, neoprene, or gel, because it retains its shape under continuous pressure. The result is a naturally breathable quilt material, firm enough to keep its shape over time, is frictionless and does not create pressure points for the horse.

All versions of Mattes custom saddle pads are available in Cotton, Cotton Sheen or Luxurious Velvet quilts. The cotton quilt is 180g/m2 and the cotton sheen and velvet are 400g/m2. Both cotton twill and velvet fabrics are blended to ensure that the colour does not fade, even after the pad has been washed or cleaned many times. The shape of each saddle pad is also anatomically correct, with a high wither cut, so that there is no pressure on the wither area.

Mattes Cotton Quilt

Mattes Cotton Quilt Fabric

Cotton Sheen Quilt Fabric

Mattes Cotton Sheen Quilt Fabric

Mattes velvet quilt

Mattes Velvet Quilt Fabric

Whilst available without, we highly recommend sheepskin options on Mattes custom saddle pads. Choose from the front only, or front and rear, with the option of semi-lined, or as a stripe on the underside seat. The sheepskin is available in a choice of 33 different colours.

What Mattes Sheepskin choices are available?

There are a wide range of sheepskin choices on all Mattes custom saddle pads

Sheepskin Style Front Stripe with Front Top

Front with Underside Stripe

Sheepskin Front Stripe with Front Rear Sheepskin

Front and Rear with Underside Stripe

Sheepskin Style Front Seat with Front Top Sheepskin

Front and Rear with Underside Seat

Style Front Stripe underside Sheepskin Only

Underside Stripe

Style Underside Seat Only

Underside Seat Only

Top Sheepskin Front and Rear Only

Front and Rear Trim Only

Front Sheepskin Trim Only

Front Trim Only

Why do Mattes use only Merino Lambskins?

Merino Lambskins are generally recognised as the most superior material used in horse products. Merino wool is renowned for its fine fibres that are extremely dense and resilient.

Mattes have strict criteria and only the best skins are selected by special pickers who have been trained
in-house. Unlike synthetic sheepskin on cheaper saddle pads, natural wool has a very open composition, which means that air can flow easily between the fibres and regulate the temperature evenly over the skin, making it ideal in both summer and winter.

The wool can absorb up to eight times its weight in moisture before it feels at all wet and the resilient nature of the fibre is perfect for even pressure distribution.

E A Mattes has put a great deal of thought into their saddle pad composition, allowing customers to choose from several clever systems that have been designed to assist the horse and rider, such as “Saddle Fix”, “SPINE-FREE®”, “Mattes MER system”, “EWWA Spine”, “PM System” and the notable “Mattes CORRECTION® system”.

What is Mattes saddle fix?

The Mattes saddle fix system is an original safe and quick fastener system, attaching the saddle pad to the gullet of the saddle. This allows your saddle to remain perfectly straight and secure at all times.

The front clip fastens to the pommel, whilst the rear clip fastens to the cantle. This keeps the pad securely in place and leaves no marks on the saddle. The centre of the saddlepad lodges high in the gullet to allow complete freedom of the spine.

The Mattes saddle fix system itself runs underneath the pad emerging through two slits in the spine. Hooks at both ends grip the saddle and hold the pad in place. Mattes saddle fix is adjustable for all saddle sizes and allows accurate fastening of combinations of the half pad with either an under-pad or a top pad. When using Mattes saddle fix, make sure that it is checked and tightened before riding. Saddle Fix can be used with the Mattes CORRECTION® system and SPINE-FREE®.

Saddle Fix System Rear

Saddle Fix System Rear

Saddle Fix Fitting

Saddle Fix Fitting

Saddle Fix System Front

Saddle Fix System Front

What is SPINE-FREE®?

Mattes combines an understanding of how materials interact with each other and expertise in equine anatomy. The result is saddle pads that specifically follow the contours of the horse’s back, ensuring a perfect fit underneath the saddle.

The patented SPINE-FREE® design plus the use of a single hide removes the possibility of seams or fabric coming into contact with the horse’s back. The spine-free channel prevents any pressure or tension in the wither area, or along the horse’s spine. This combination prevents rubbing, sore spots or pressure.

What is the Mattes MER system?

The MER system is a set of special fixing points front and back on your Mattes saddle pad, allowing you to attach a front bib, a quarter sheet or both.

The front and rear sheets are made from a high-quality fleece and can be colour matched to your saddle pad with a choice of trims, piping and embroidery, perfect for exercising your horse in colder weather, and easily removable.

The horse sheets are available in a variety of lengths and allow the horse and rider full freedom of movement.

Mattes Mer System

Mattes Mer System

What is mattes EWWA spine?

If your horse has wide withers, Mattes custom saddle pads have an extra wide wither option with a larger cut out where the sheepskin has been removed to ensure there is no additional pressure on the spine or withers, this does mean that on half pads the pad itself is finished a little deeper than the regular spine free option.

What is Mattes PM system?

The PM System was developed in conjunction with Peter Menet, designer of Amerigo and Vega Saddles, for riders who use a combination of half pad and saddle pad. The billet straps on the saddle pad have been replaced with slits on either side. The billet straps on the half pad can now be fed through the buttonhole slits in the saddle pad, securing the two pads together.

What is the Mattes CORRECTION® System?

The Mattes CORRECTION® System is a set of single or multi pockets built into your saddle pad, which enables the insertion of shims to assist with maintaining balance and straightness for horses that may change their shape throughout the year. Both single and multi-pocket systems can be integrated into all Mattes pads.

The system has been used to aid changes in the shape of young horses due to their rapid development during training, also for fully trained horses, who are naturally prone to change shape, and to correct problems in a horse build, for example, unequal sides, as well as back issues caused by age.

E A Mattes CORRECTION® System consists of a single or double pocket on either side of the pad (on western saddles there is a choice of one or three pockets). Each pocket comes with a choice of a single or double bag of shims and each bag contains 3x 5mm thick POLY-FLEX ® felt inserts (known as shims).

The construction of the shim closely matches the padding of a new wool and horsehair saddle and is designed to be layered. The shims are easily trimmed with scissors to taper the end, creating a pressure-free fit. This enables the rider to adjust the saddle position by up to 30mm on each side. As the horse’s shape changes shims can be added or removed as required.

The Single pocket is suited to sort the issue of bridging saddles, which is a common problem in not only Western saddles but English ones as well.

Double Shims

Double Pocket Shims (4 pockets, 2 each side)

Single Pocket Shims

Single Pocket Shims 2 pockets, 1 each side)

Western Triple Pocket Shims

Western Triple Pocket Shims (6 pockets, 3 each side)

Western Single Pocket Shims

Western Single Pocket Shims (2 pockets, 1 each side)

saddle pad for horses

How to measure your saddle pad

The shape and size of your saddle will determine the size and cut of your saddle pad. For example, if you ride dressage in a dressage saddle, you will need a dressage cut saddle pad, similarly jumping and if you ride in an all purpose (also known as GP or General Purpose) saddle, you will need an all-purpose pad.

The key measurement is the length of the contact area of the saddle (including the saddle’s padding) on the horse’s back. The easiest way to do this is by turning over your saddle and using a flexible tape measure (such as a dressmakers tape measure) to measure along an imaginary line down the gullet, starting at the front edge of the padding (marked A on the diagram), all the way back until you reach the rear edge of the saddle padding (marked B on the diagram).

Ensure that the tape is taut and add at least 6cm to the measurement. This is the minimum back length for your saddle pad. Compare your measurement with our measurement table and choose the closest matching size (Please bear in mind when choosing a pad that quoted sizes for saddle pads may vary by +/-2cm and that pads may shrink by up to 5% when washed).

measuring a pad 

Saddle Pad Care

A Mattes saddle pad is an investment and with proper care and attention, you will be able to enjoy your saddle pad for many years to come. You should only need to change your saddle pad when you fall in love with another colour scheme because let’s face it, you can never have enough saddle pads!!

There is no getting away from the fact, that your saddle pad works hard to wick away horse sweat and pick up dirt and horse hair. To ensure your pad continues to function correctly and looks great for many years, you will need to take care of it and wash it regularly. Mattes encourage you to wash your pad as they benefit from a routine washing regime and have adapted a range of Mattes laundry accessories. In fact all Mattes sheepskin pads include a bottle of their special Mattes MELP detergent. The ingredients help the removal of dirt and horsehair and are even used in the lambskin production process to replace the oils lost in the cleaning process.

Regular washing not only removes detritus but also sebum and ammonia content, which if not cleaned can break down the sheepskin fibres. Thorough drying, preferably in a tumble dryer, ensures that your fleece is fluffy and your pad is clean and dry.


Step by Step process to wash and dry your sheepskin pads



Mattes saddle pad washing instructions

If you don’t have the “extra water” option on your washing machine, it is recommended that you add an extra three or four litres of water to the machine, by pulling out the detergent drawer and pouring the water into it for the best results. Do not use an iron on your pad as this will almost certainly damage it.

Once your pad is dry it should be stored somewhere clean and dry and out of direct sunlight. Ideally, the pad should be hung on a saddle stand or something that the pad can be hung over so that it retains its natural shape. If you have any questions about how to take care of your saddle pad, please do not hesitate to contact us.

How to order a Saddle Pad from Pink Equine

It is very easy to order products from our online shop regardless of whether it is for yourself or you are buying a gift for someone else. You can sort by categories and specific products by price or alphabetically. If it is an in-stock item, find the right size and simply add it to the cart, then complete the checkout process for delivery of your orders. All our prices include VAT and our returns policy is included on the delivery & returns tab and on a separate page listed in the footer of our website.

If your saddle pad selection is custom, choose the style of saddle pad you require (dressage square, sheepskin half pad, all-purpose saddle cloth, GP, jumping, dressage etc), and decide on the type of quilt fabric (cotton, cotton sheen or velvet) and use the online software to begin designing your saddle pad.

You can view the design of your item and check if you are happy with the choice of colours, sheepskin, and rope trims and whether you wish to include any extras or accessories, such as “Saddle Fix”, or the Mattes Correction System. Once you are happy with the design and all the features you require, add your composition to the cart and begin the checkout process as normal.

As well as the UK, we sell Mattes saddle pads all over the world and regularly ship to the USA, Canada and Australia, where currency exchange rates make purchasing from us very economical. You can now choose your own countries currency and checkout without having to worry or work out conversion rates. We are always happy to assist with any queries, in any timezone, or in any language if you need more information on how or what to order.

Click on the image below to view the complete range of Mattes saddle pads.

Bespoke Horse Tack