Mavis Spencer maintains a high profile. A silver medalist at the 2008 USEF National Junior Jumper Championship and a recipient of the William C. Steinkraus Style of Riding Award at Harrisburg, the young professional has managed the United States branch of Neil Jones Equestrian this year while also running her own Gallop Apace, LLC in Wellington, Fla.
A daughter of actress Alfre Woodard and producer Roderick Spencer, Mavis was named Miss Golden Globe in 2010 and was featured as one of People’s “Most Beautiful” that same year.
Based in both Wellington and Lexington, Ky.—with frequent trips to her hometown in Los Angeles and a full schedule of traveling to international competitions—Mavis is always on the go and combats life’s everyday challenges by keeping her essentials close by and on hand.
On her way home from a full day’s work in Wellington, Spencer gave NF Style a look into her Oughton City Lux bag and revealed the somewhat surprising items she always has with her.
“What I love about my City Lux bag is how much room it has in it,” Spencer said of Oughton’s luxury “it” bag with interchangeable saddle-shaped flaps. “If I’m going to the horse show office, I can fit everything in there for my entries. It’s an all-purpose bag to me: I can take it if I’m going out in the evening, and I take it with me to the barn every day. It’s got a great look to it, and it’s a bag with function.
What I love about my City Lux bag is how much room it has in it.
“It ties itself in to everything, because it’s so elegant,” she continued. “It’s so chic, but at the same time, it’s so simple, which is definitely part of my style.”
Here’s what she stores safely in the chic design:
• Spencer keeps an Oughton envelope in her City Lux bag at all times, and within it she stores her more personal items, like her checkbook, business cards and passport, for easy access.
• A tiny but major essential is chapstick.
• She’s never in a short supply of hair ties.
“When you need one, you never seem to have one,” she said. “I seem to either misplace them, or they break!”
• Spencer keeps extra double-ended snaps on her bag than she does key chains. As all equestrians know, these snaps endlessly come in handy.
“I seem to collect these snaps, and I’m always clipping them onto things on my purse,” she said. “That way, I always have them.”
• Spencer channels her inner Girl Scout with a certain, always-handy item.
“Normally, I always have a pocketknife, for the times I need to put up a bag of hay or open a bag of shavings when I’m setting up stalls or anything like that,” she said. “I like having that Swiss Army Knife that has pliers or scissors or a knife or a screwdriver all in one place.
“It sounds boyish, I guess, but being around the barn, I definitely find that I’m using it several times a day, and at least I always know it’s there if I can’t find scissors around the barn. It’s super handy, and I don’t think I could survive without it!”
• A common beauty essential is a facial cleansing pad “just for when you’re really sweaty and gross at the end of the day.” She also makes sure to have sunscreen on hand. (See Mavis’s beauty diary here.)
• Organization is paramount, as is consistency.
“I have a small monthly calendar that I have all of the shows in, dates for the farrier, entries, and dates for when they close and things like that,” Spencer said. “And I also have a notepad that I keep records of everything in—what I do on an everyday basis, any notes about the horses, clients if I have them coming in and what they’re looking for. It all pretty much lives in my City Lux bag!”
Founded by Daphne Markcrow, Oughton Limited designs equestrian inspired luggage, handbags, and accessories. Evoking a sensibility of equestrian traditions, long-lasting utility, and timelessness over trend, Oughton’s products feature the hallmarks of equestrian life in the materials used in its products: classic waxwear fabric, trimmed with top quality halter leather and imported Italian bronze halter fittings. “Whether around the ring or around the world, a great trip starts with the right bag.” To learn more, visit their website here.
All photos by Kate Houlihan