While cowboy boots have seen a resurgence throughout recent years and have reinvented themselves repeatedly, these boots never truly went out of style. This longevity is due to certain factors beyond their iconic history, including traditions and culture. Cowboy boots have always been a noteworthy part of the American way of life. Read on to discover some interesting facts you didn’t know about cowboy boots and advance your knowledge.
Laces Are Out (and Were Never In)
One thing that sets cowboy boots apart from every other type of shoe and boot on the market is that they have no laces. This feature (or lack thereof) is a unique part of their makeup which, ironically, makes them more popular. Bootmakers originally crafted them this way so that the rider, while on horseback, would not come out of the stirrups and risk slipping off the saddle.
From Protection to Comfort
The initial purpose of the shaft was to protect the rider from saddle rubbing, brush, and cacti. Alongside the shafts, the heels also helped lock the rider on horseback into place but weren’t all that great for walking. It wouldn’t be until the last century that the shoe would adapt for comfort with a wider heel and an insole for extreme comfort.
Sturdy Toes Live On
The hardened ends of the toes also serve a purpose. These protect against, you guessed it, horse hooves. When spending so much time with these massive creatures that we used to ride, we needed some protection in the event of accidents, which, admittedly, were prone to happen from time to time. These hardened leather toes have still not gone out of style.
Stitched With Purpose
The patterns that you see stitched throughout the shaft and all the way to the toes of certain pairs of boots were not originally for mere aesthetics alone. They strengthen the leather for extra-long wear throughout the boots’ lives. You’ll see these patterns on any of the five types of cowboy boots, though they’re most common on the western boot.
Considering how long their history is, it makes sense that there are plenty of interesting things you didn’t know about cowboy boots. From dancing shoes and work boots to art pieces, cowboy boots continue to play a role in cultures across the US and beyond.