Accessories Leather Saddles/Tack

Albright Halters Never Out of Style

      By Nick Pernokas  It’s been said that class and quality never go out of style. Nowhere in the equine industry is this demonstrated more than with the halter. In a world where saddle styles have change dramatically in the last century and a half, the halter has only changed a little. Every horse wears one, and although the materials have evolved in a lot of cases, the basic design hasn’t. In Ocala, Florida, a small company is doing a great business making the same classic halter
Leather Saddles/Tack

Texas Legend S. D. Myres

Tio Sam the Saddle Man  by Gene Fowler  Pancho Villa was a man of many horses. Many horses and many saddles…. So many saddles that it seems like the story of every saddlemaker who was active back in Villa’s day includes the claim that they made a custom saddle for the notorious Mexican revolutionary. If you read enough about the West, you’ll often get the impression that everyone this side of the Mississippi rode with
Accessories Artisan Saddles/Tack

Al Gould – Innovative Master Saddlemaker and Leather Craftsman

By Susan Ditz  Al Gould is an inveterate doodler.   His multifaceted, complex drawings are sketched repeatedly as he works through a design to refine the patterns and elements that make each one so distinctive. Whether for a saddle, briefcase, purse, chinks, photo album or guitar strap, design innovations and meticulous attention to detail are why he is considered one of the country’s master custom saddlemakers and premier leather artists.  Born and raised in Clovis,
Artisan Saddles/Tack

TRAILBLAZING HIS WAY TO MASTERY

Jeremiah Watt’s state-of-the-art custom saddles and other handmade equine products set a high standard for the industry.  By Lynn Ascrizzi  No matter how brilliant one’s horse, the journey to attain artistic mastery inevitably takes the rider on a rocky, demanding and twisting trail.   For first-class artisan Jeremiah Watt, that arduous yet rewarding road to perfect his saddlemaking art began about 50 years ago in Dryden, Ontario, Canada, where he was raised.   Colleen and Jeremiah Watt of Coalinga, California, and their daughter Nevada Miller, of Frenchglen, Oregon, when Jeremiah was giving a
Artisan Saddles/Tack

Nancy Martiny: Hidden Treasure

By Nick Pernokas  If you’ve ever traveled south on the back roads of eastern Idaho, you’ve seen the dark forests and craggy mountains give way to sage brush, and then the vast plains to the south. You’ve probably noticed that it was lonesome country, the kind of country that can keep a secret. Towns with names like Custer and Bonanza were once booming towns where men coaxed hidden treasure from the ground, in the form of silver and gold. But those men, and the towns, are
Artisan Saddles/Tack

Platte Valley Saddle Shop: The Legacy of a Rambling Saddle Maker

By Nick Pernokas The Chevy box truck labored up another hill. In 1928, some of the roads in western Nebraska were in name only. The region was not called “the Sandhills” for nothing, and Elmus Henderson hoped he would not have to pull the planks out of the back to give the tires some traction. He looked over at his assistant, who was slumped on the passenger side. Elmus knew from the man’s choice of refreshments that he probably
Saddles/Tack

Saddle Maker Wilford Lewis: The Long Haul in His Own Words

By Nick Pernokas  Sometimes the dust of history covers up some pretty good stories. Sometimes it takes a cold West Texas wind to blow some of it away, so you know where to start digging. The wind was blowing that day in 2002, when I pulled off Highway 67 just outside of Brownwood, Texas. I was looking for a man who was a link between the cowboy saddles of yesteryear, and the modern performance saddle.
Saddles/Tack

Slone Saddles: Rooted in Rodeo

By Liisa Andreassen  Tod Slone, an icon in the western saddle making industry, had no idea that one day, saddle making would be his business. But here he is, 24 years after the founding of Slone Saddles (1996), where he and his wife, Lonna, currently employ more than 50 people, including their daughter, Kailey, and sons, Ace and Leske.   Tod Slone, an icon in the western saddle making industry, with his wife Lonna. “Built to
Artisan Saddles/Tack

WORKING SADDLES FOR WORKING HORSEMEN

Saddlemaker Ben Geisler carries forward the Wade saddle tradition   By Lynn Ascrizzi  Resilience. A capacity to flourish. Hidden strength. Attributes like these are native to the aspen tree: a lithe, adaptable species that announces spring with flowering catkins, reclaims burned-over, scarred landscapes and, in fall, lights up hillsides with bright-gold leaves.   The tree’s hardy attributes seem to be a fitting metaphor for Aspen Saddlery of Rineyville, Kentucky, a one-man shop owned and operated with single-minded dedication by saddlemaker and leatherworker, Ben Geisler.   The majority of Geisler’s equally hardy customers are ranch cowboys and horse trainers. “I make working saddles for working horsemen. They’re almost all rough-out, Wade saddles, made flesh side-out. The thing with rough out, is that it
Saddles/Tack

THREE-GENERATIONS OF LEGENDARY ARTISTRY

Harris Leather & Silverworks sets the standard for the show horse community A show horse decked out with a custom Harris saddle enhanced with ornate silverwork. By Lynn Ascrizzi Anyone deeply involved in big-time show horse events, such as The All-American Quarter Horse Congress,is well aware of the stature of Harris Leather & Silverworks and their hand-built, silver-spangled saddles and other artfully craftedleather tack.  “Our saddles and silverwork are what