It's almost funny how some model tack winds up with a mix of extremely heavy, hefty parts and light, thin, friable, ready-to-break parts. Call it style, call it ease-of-making (speed!); whatever it is, it greatly enhances the possibility of breaking-in-use. This bridle, acquired some months ago with a saddle, had a big heavy earpiece and cheekstraps, but a crown strap of dainty fragility.
The Black Art of O.F. Enhancement. The skill ranges from white magic on down; maybe more on this later!) Tinkering with another's work is a vast subject, worthy of thick books and forests of terms: Conserve, preserve, repair, refurbish, replace! The field of model tack being relatively new (and most questions being relatively minor), I have worked out my own standards.
Whether the artist has produced a lot of pieces influences me. When the piece is really broken, is missing something or when fixing requires a skill I need to practice (the 'teaching value' excuse), it's repair time. If I think I can get away with strengthening or enhancing, I'll fix it to the best of my ability and time available -- and take notes. The bottom rung of this ladder, I confess, is "I wanna 'cause it's mine now." But at least notes are kept...
In this case I thought I'd "line" the crown strap with another piece of lace. The upper surface would remain the same, but the strap would be thickened. In model tack thickness equals strength. I had to find lace that was the same color, type and density, matching as closely as possible.
Now for the holes:
A final step is to use a rattail needle file to further open the holes. The lining has given the crown strap leather to spare. Since the original featured round holes, this was part of matching the previous artist's style as closely as possible.
The earpiece is unusually large. Proportions are a challenge eh!? I had to hunt all through the herd for a horse with big enough ears! Even the Stone Thoroughbred was small for this bridle... The saddle that came with it was Trad scale, and it also showed some proportion challenges. I did draw the line at shortening the earpiece. Excuse the thread on the nose; that's only me hating sticky wax and not bothering with PhotoShopping it [the thread] out.