Custom Boots Sole and Leather Considerations


From heavy welted soles, through various intermediate welted weights, to featherweight non-welted custom cowboy boots, the type of sole you choose can make a big difference in the feel of your Paul Bond custom boots.

1) Lightweight non-welted soles are the lightest and most flexible, and are the easiest to break in. Partially this is because there is no welt (they are glued)  and partially because a thinner leather is used for the actual sole. This gives added lightness and comfort to custom made boots, although they will need resoling more often.  (You usually see lightweight soles on men’s Italian loafers or maximum comfort western dress boots.) Those seeking lightness and comfort prefer it.  

What is a welt? A welt is a strip of stiff leather that is hand sewn to the bottom of the leather in your vamps (feet of your Paul Bond custom made boots). It provides a strong, tight, and stable foundation to which we sew the sole.

2) Welted soles are a little heavier, and a bit stiffer initially. They take more wear before needing resoling, and stand up better to hard treatment. This is the type of sole you more often see in Paul Bond standard men’s handmade cowboy boots or women's working cowboy boots. And yes, there are different weights of soles that Paul Bond Custom Made Boots attaches to its welts.  The usual sole that Paul Bond Custom Cowboy Boots uses is a regular weight, but we can attach thinner or heavier soles as you wish.

Men frequently, but not always, prefer welted soles. However, others prefer the extra comfort of lightweight non-welted soles for dress custom boots.

Women frequently, but not always, prefer non-welted featherweight soles on their custom made boots.


Paul Bond Custom Cowboy Boots offer a wide variety of leathers.   Each has its own characteristics, including toughness and flexibility. This focuses on weight and suppleness in custom made boots. (See more on Custom Boots Leathers at Boot Options and on Alex' Blog..)

1) Dress Boot: Men and women who want dressy custom made boots favor Kangaroo, dress weight Calf, and Ostrich, as well as the exotic leathers like Alligator, Snake, and Lizard for their Paul Bond handmade cowboy boots.

2) Work Boot: Those who want a heavier and tougher leather in their custom cowboy boots favor hides such as Buffalo, Bull hide, and Wax French Calf. 

Wax French Calf, is the toughest leather for Paul Bond custom boots that are going to be put to hard use such as heavy brush and/or the muck of corrals. This is the leather used in our famous handmade Working Cowboy Boots.

 The freedom to choose exactly what you want in custom cowboy boots is one of the most enjoyable aspects of Paul Bond Custom Boots. These are designer handmade cowboy boots.  However, we understand the process can be overwhelming to some, and encourage you to call for consultation at any point.