I think by now you all have a good idea of who I am and what I am doing at Paul Bond Custom Boots, but now I'd like to change up the topic of conversation. My goal is to address all those sticky wickets of the custom made boots ordering process. I know this process can be overwhelming so whether you are struggling with leather decisions or handmade cowboy boot styles, or even wait time or price, I am here to help.
To begin this series, I want to start with the most common question I get; what is the best leather for me? If you were to ask Paul this question, he would always respond with.. "How do you intend to use these boots?" I am going to take that question a few steps further and break it down into three simple pieces:
1) What occasions do you plan to wear your custom cowboy boots? Work, play, formal, or combination?
2) What feel are you going for? Soft and malleable? Sturdy and tough?
3) What type of skin do you want? Exotic? Non-exotic?
I will review these questions over the next few weeks but now that we have a general outline, let's get started with occasion - when do you plan to wear your custom made boots?
When thinking about occasion, think about the objective of your handmade cowboy boots. How will you use them most? If the answer to that question is to work, we need to put you in a highly durable and scuff resistant leather such as french waxed calf, elephant, bull shoulder, bison, or shark (difficult to source at the moment).
Our most popular is french waxed calf, illustrated in our working cowboy boot, but in high demand lately has been the wide variety of elephant on the market these days.
If you are on the hunt for custom boots for play, we can "play" around with the leathers quite a bit! Typically, handmade cowboy boots in this category will have have a lot of detail work in terms of inlay or overlay, which is another post all in itself (don't worry, we'll get there!) However, in terms of the vamps (the feet of your custom cowboy boots), many will go with a standard calf or kangaroo, both which are pliable and cost efficient. You can even experiment in the exotics to take your custom boots to the next level. A really fun exotic choice I've seen lately is the oily tanned ostrich like these. This choice is great for achieving that "vintage" look or what some like to call the "broken in" look.
The last category I want to discuss today are custom made boots for formal wear. These are some of my favorites as they tend to lend themselves to the amazing exotic skins out right now, such as these two-toned crocodile handmade boots or the soft OPU finished gator for that that more distressed feel like the ostrich mentioned above. Of course, when it comes to formal wear, you don't have to commit to the high investment exotic custom made boots to get that formal feel. If you are looking for a more cost efficient version, try keeping it simple with a great calf or kangaroo that can hit just the right note as well!
As you can imagine, most people are looking for combination custom cowboy boots, for example, playful boots that can be dressed up or down. The great thing about handmade cowboy boots like this is that you have a lot of options. In my opinion the first question you need to ask yourself is whether or not you want exotic. From that point, we have a great base to start with!
Now that you have a strong starting point for choosing leathers, it's time to consider where you fall in this spectrum. Remember, I am here to help and make this process as simple as possible, so if you have any questions at all, please email me at email@example.com.
Be on the lookout for my next post, where I will discuss the "feel" of your custom made boots. This will be particularly beneficial for people with any foot issues.