Cowboy Boot Makers, a primer...add your own.

Discussion in 'General Attire & Accoutrements' started by TipTop, Apr 5, 2012.

  1. TipTop

    TipTop Practically Family

    Messages:
    540
    Location:
    Albany, NY
    I'm posting this separately so that the list can be found easily and added to.

    As with any "art" form, a lot of the opinion about their work is just that. FWIW, here is my perosnal list developed through purchaseing, visits, measuring and direct contact.

    I personally think that the highest quality hand made boot right now comes from Pedro Munoz at Stallion Boot Co. in El Paso. He will tell you directly that he continues to build boots the way Lucchese did in the "old" days of San Antonio--that is the best examples in the world. And they are as gorgeous as expensive. His wares are found in the finest western specialty stores (e.g. Axel's, Vail, etc.) Of note however, is that his lasts are of the old school and you may need upsize a half, especially if you have a high instep, as I do.

    Another old line top-end manufacturer is T.O. Stanley; I don't have any, but their stuff is renowned, and you can spot the S stitiched into the instep of the boot.

    Dave Little's in San Antonio is great. I have a (vintage) pair of their alligators that are magnificent.

    I
    am very fond of J.B. Hill, ElPaso, but that's because I know him from the horse racing scene at Saratoga, just north of here. I have several pairs of his work and it is first class. Many are sold at high-end retailers. Diana, his top gal actually flew into ABQ to measure my foot, right at the airport, when I was there last spring. (Dr. Hill stitches his Texas Star trademark into the instep, where Stanley stitches their S.) They also have a Monthly boot special at 20% off.

    I
    am also very fond of Falconhead-Tres Outlaws. The store is in LA, but the boot works are in El Paso (across Cotton St from Stallion) and offered at other retailers. I find their 12D last to be very comfortable on my 12 E foot and have several pairs of their exotics. Chawne is a very helpful young man there. Get on their mailing list to receive exclusive discount offerings.

    A
    nother of my favorites for high-style good-humor designs is Rocketbuster Boots in ElPaso. My partiality may be due to Nevena's wonderfully warm personality, as much as her creativity in styles. Great fun to visit there for ideas and measurement.

    Back at the Ranch, a high-end store in Santa Fe has beautiful boots, especially hand-tooled models. I would be hard-pressed to choose between their tooling and that of Tres Outlaws; but fit-wise, Tres Outlaws wins for me.

    Then, we get down to the more mass-produced boots and the arguably biggest name there, Lucchese. They have several outlet stores in ElPaso, right near the airport, so when in town....jump a cab just outside the airport grounds, but you should call to see which stores carries more of your desired models. The one nearer El Paso (off main airport road) carries more Classics, while the one up near the military base tends to have more of the street boots lines (1889, cowboy, etc) The store managers are very helpful and will ship for you; Google the stores for details.

    The largest RETAILER of Lucchese is Massachussetts-based Grapevinehill.com They have a great shipping and return policy and also run huge email-based sales, as well as have a big presence on eBay.

    I have a pair of Champion Attitude Boots (aka Caboots) knee-high riding boots; they tend to be a specialty manufacturer (civil war re-enactors, movie styles, pirates boots, etc.) I bought my high boots at a high discount for motorcycle riding and had them change out the soles for rubber. Seems like a small operation, as the owner seems to answer the phone.

    Don't know anything about these guys, Stewart Custom Boots, Tucson, AZ but they have a good local reputation.


    That's about all that I am familiar with; I am sure you will be able to add more.

    FYI: My only pair that I have yet to find an occasion to actually wear (Tres Outlaws) ;->

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    Last edited: Apr 5, 2012
  2. camjr

    camjr New in Town

    Messages:
    41
    Location:
    DFW, TX
    As a near life-long Texan (Born in Fort Worth, lived a years north of Atlanta during my very young pre-adoloscent years before moving back to DFW where I've remained the remainder of my life), I've been a fan of Tony Lama out of El Paso for years. For one of the larger producers, they make an excellent boot. I've owned one pair of Dan Post boots (Black Cherry Kangaroo ropers), but all my others have been Tony Lama. They've all survived multiple resolings and keep on keepin' on. I haven't gone for the highly stylized boots like Rocketbuster or the beautifly boots posted by TipTop, but tend to stick to bullhide, shrunken shoulder, and smooth and rough ostrich.


    Cheers!
     
  3. frussell

    frussell One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,409
    Location:
    California Desert
    Paul Bond. Best boots I've ever owned. Period.
     
  4. 4spurs

    4spurs One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    271
    Location:
    mostly in my head
    If you are going to have made to measure boots have them made by the person who does the measuring; usually that means going to a real small bootmaking shop.
     
  5. seabass

    seabass Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,132
    Location:
    nor cal
    YUP Paul Bond of Arizona Killer boots
     
  6. TipTop

    TipTop Practically Family

    Messages:
    540
    Location:
    Albany, NY
    Thanks for the additions, guys. I've certainly heard of Paul Bond (seen his video too), but have no personal experience. One I forgot is Liberty Boots, headquartered in Toronto Canada, but made in Mexico (let's hear it for NAFTA). They are high-quality hand made boots and run the gamut from conservative to stylized model like those made in "good ole Mexico" and offered by Old Gringo. Old Gringo is apparently shy and has no retail-oriented web site that i could find (but recall one from a couple years ago; they were unresponsive to me then, so maybe they've given up on any retail relations).

    Another large retailer is Sheplers. I bought my Libertys from them, along with two pairs of Old Gringos.

    BootStar is a large retailer in LA and Vegas featuring everything from Stallions to Freys and they also sell on eBay. I purchased a pair of Rios of Mercedes, Mercedes TX from them that are very comfortable and Boot Star's designs are "exclusive" and often very low key and plain. My impression is that Rios builds decent boots, but their detail work (staining and burnishing, etc) is not up to par with Lucchese and Old Gringo etc.

    And finally (for now), just so you don't get the impression that I like crazy stuff (red flames above) here is my favorite pairing, that I call Whiskey and Feathers--A Churchill Red River for Neiman Marcus in whiskey with a replaced feather band and my custom J. B. Hills "La Plumas" in whiskey with chocolate foot. Both are exceedingly comfortable and passable in upstate NY!

    [​IMG]
     

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