How to Hitch Horse Hair

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Things You'll Need

  • #9 nylon string

  • Wooden dowel rod

  • Horse hair

  • Hydrogen peroxide (if working with white horse hair)

  • Shampoo

  • Dye

  • Hitching press

Hitching horse hair over quality leather will create a one-of-a-kind product. The primary goal is to make your hitched horse hair tack durable enough for everyday use. The leather's integrity is not compromised by hitching horse hair over it; rather, the hitching should provide tremendous support and durability. Hitching involves making a series of half-hitch knots arranged concentrically on a dowel to make geometric patterns. Be aware that hitching horse hair is different from braiding because the tail hair is actually tied in a series of knots.


How To Hitch Horse Hair

Step 1

Pull the hair by pulling 10 hairs and tying them on one end. This is now called a "pull."

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Step 2

Soak white hair pulls in hydrogen peroxide for one week to clean the hair.

Step 3

Dye the pulls to the desired color(s).

Step 4

Allow the pulls to dry.

Step 5

Shampoo the pulls several times to ensure the dye colors won't run.


Step 6

Divide each pull into five sections and twist the hairs together.

Step 7

Tie the pulls to No. 9 twine and a wooden dowel to begin hitching.

Step 8

Create a series of half-hitch knots, weaving the horsehair around the dowel rod and forming your desired design.


Step 9

Remove the dowel rod from the center of your completed horse hair hitch creation.

Step 10

Press your completed work to flatten the design. Your piece is now ready to attach to leather.


The art of horse hair hitching is a time-consuming one that requires a great deal of patience. One hitching piece can take hours, days, months, or even years to complete, depending on the desired size and how elaborate the design is.


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