You don’t have to be a cowboy to go to Texas, you don’t have to wear cowboy boots to be a cowboy, and your cowboy boots don’t have to be handmade – but if you decide you need some quality boots when you’re down here, you really oughta consider getting a pair of handcrafted, Texas cowboy boots.
We’re all so used to mass-produced products it’s hard to remember that everything used to be made by hand and a lot of it was much better quality. Sure, it’s not as efficient to do everything this way but something is lost when switching from handcrafted to machine made.
Addressing that, here is a short list of some of the finer bootmakers in our great state. It’s no complete list by any means, but we feel confident you could visit any one of these businesses and walk away in a pair of handcrafted, Texas cowboy boots of a fit and quality like nothing else you’ve ever worn:
110 Division Avenue, San Antonio, TX
Little’s Boots are renowned for their fancy, custom boots, which they’ve made for folks like Reba McEntire, Tommy Lee Jones, and Alex Haley. Specializing in unembellished exotic leathers and intricately detailed art boots.
The Stallion Boot and Belt Company
100 N. Cotton, El Paso, TX
The Stallion designs boots for couture retailers like Dolce & Gabbana and Christian Dior as well as customs. Their specialty is replicas of classic boots and fancy stitching and lacing. Madonna, Robert Plant, Bob Dylan, Ashley Judd, and Tom Cruise have all had pairs made.
James Leddy Boots
1602 N. Treadaway Boulevard, Abilene, TX
A family business with members kicking in to do the labor, James Leddy Boots has made footwear for Buck Owens, George Jones, Johnny Bush, and U.S. representative Charles Stenholm. They’re known for flowery tops, old-fashioned crimped vamps, zipper tops, and sharp, pointed toes.
Armando’s Boot Company
169 N. Seventh, Raymondville, TX
With 45 years of experience Armando Duarte Rios really knows his trade. Specializing in fancy inlays and stitching, he’s produced boots for such luminaries as Sean Penn, Peter Coyote, Willie Nelson, former governor Mark White, and former Speaker of the House Gib Lewis.
R.J.’s Boot Company
3321 Ella Boulevard, Houston, TX
In business since 1938, R.J.’s specializes in conservative, upscale boots using gold and silver and fashioning artistic tops to display things like your company logo. Dolly Parton has purchased a pair, so have both President Bushes and Governor Rick Perry.
Now don’t get me wrong: there are plenty of fine, mass-produced cowboy boots out there – boots that look good, wear well, and last long – and custom boots can be pricey but you’ve not worn a pair of boots until you’ve worn a pair of handcrafted, Texas cowboy boots made just for you.
No matter where you go in Texas – east, west, north, south, or central – there’s bound to be a bootmaker nearby, turning out custom, handcrafted Texas cowboy boots. Similarly, there’s bound to be a locally owned and operated bed and breakfast nearby, as well. There’s nothing like that custom fit, and that’s what you get at a Texas inn with unique, personalized service, home-cooked breakfasts, and more amenities than you can shake a stick at. Give us try and see the difference.