Cowboy Boots

Boots are only a small part of a cowboy’s “uniform.” How much do you know about boots? Did you know there is a patron saint of shoe and boot makers, Saint Crispin?

Basic Parts of Boots

PIPING: The founded strips of leather running up the sides of the boot, centered.

PULL HOLES: These are finger holes at the tops of boots, which have replaced pull straps. Cowboys sometimes refer to them as “windows.”

PULL STRAPS: These are leather straps attached to either the outside or inside at the back tops of boots. Used to help pull on the boots. Working cowboys tend to not have this because the straps can get caught on things or rub against a leg and cause discomfort.

SCALLOP: This is the V-shape on the front and back the boot.

SHANK: This is the part of the boot used to reinforce the cowboy’s arch.

SOLE: Besides the heel, this is the only part of the boot that makes contact with the ground.

SPUR REST: This is a ridge on the back of the boot that helps to hold up a spur.

STAY: This is a strip of leather running up and down the back of the inside of the boot lining for support of the boot. Cowboys commonly prefer a four-inch wide strip that runs from the bottom of the boot to the top.

TOE BOX: This is a stiff piece of material in the top of the boot toe between the outer leather and the lining to reinforce the shape.

TOE BUG: Decorative stitching common to each boot maker. It is sometimes called the “toe flower” or “medallion.”

TONGUE: The top part of the vamp sewn onto the upper front portion of the boot. It is usually reinforced with another layer of leather because the cowboy’s stirrup hits this area of the boot.

VAMP: The lower part of the boot that covers the foot.

STYLE: There are basically two types of western styles: traditional and fashion. Traditional boots are functional with a classic design. Fashion boots are available from many designers and have a more urban or contemporary look.

MATERIAL: Leather is the most traditional material for boots, but there are many exotic materials used, mainly for dressing up.

COLOR: Traditional boots are in neutral, earthy tones such as brown, black or gray. Beyond that, boots are available in everything from hot pink to neon green to whatever.

HEEL HEIGHT: In the old westerns, the average heel height for a cowboy’s boot was 2 inches. The heights today vary from nearly flat to 4-inch stiletto. But the traditional western boot has a height of 1 ¾ inches, to fit well in stirrups.

TOES: Boots come in various styles of toes, such as pointed, square, and rounded. The classic cowboy boot has toes that are tapered (smaller towards the tip), but also rounded. This style is easier to slip the foot in and out of stirrups. Pointed toes can go all the way to “needle pointed” and are popular in today’s fashion. Rounded toes are popular for rodeo calf-ropers. It is a good choice for a walking boot, but not for riding long distances. Square toes are more of a fashion statement, but they are popular for riding boots and walking boots.

A bit of Regency fun

Bad boys and slightly naughty ladies … can be found in any time period.

This time I’m thinking about the troubled but loving Duke of Berkshire taking on the wily Lady Georgina Rose Desmond in Lady Rose’s Secret.

Or the Earl of Devon struggling with his former ward, Lady Selina Egerton, in The Earl and His Minx.

Or the determined, widowed Earl of Saliston taking on the adventuresome Lady Abigail Remington in Abigail’s Earl.

Or the patient, determined Duke of Ashcroft taking on the headstrong Lady Ashlynn Remington in His Lady Ashlynn.

Or the secretive pirate Hawke, the Duke of Buckingham, dealing with the daring Lady Sabrina Whitley in Hawke’s Lady.


Cowboy Collections

If you like reading collections of short stories, I’ve got stories in quite a few. It is always fun to have collections with a number of my own stories. But I also enjoy being included with other talented authors.

Cowboy Desire is a collection from fourteen authors. It includes everything from contemporary, historical, fantasy, and even outer space stories. My story is E-mail Ordered Groom.

Cowboys in Charge is a hot collection of my own cowboy stories and their spirited women.

Be Mine is a collection of Valentine’s Day stories from four authors. My story is His By Valentine’s Day.

Tamed By the Cowboy is a collection from six authors of stories about cowboys willing to love and protect their ladies. My story is Dude Ranch.

Ranch Heat is a collection of three hot cowboy stories of my own.

Cold weather…hot nights

Is the cold weather getting to you? Try warming up your nights (or days) reading about some “hot,” strong-willed men who butt heads with some equally strong-willed women.

Enjoy a masterful man of the seas? Pirate Hawke’s patience is tried when he finds Lady Sabrina Whitley hiding on his ship. Hawke’s Lady.

What about a medieval hardened English knight weary of battles? Thomas Lancaster and his trusted friend/lover are forced to deal with Lady Gloriana, who both despises them and is drawn to them. Their Lady Gloriana.

Or how about a Scottish Highland warrior? Wounded and healing physically and mentally, Brodie Durward heads home from the Crusades to find peace only to run into a spirited traveling tinker woman, Annabel Henderson. The Great Scottish Devil.

Then there is a battle-weary English knight. Nicholas Neville wants nothing more than to get home from the Crusades, but the king orders him to bring the Scottish hellion, Maggie Durwood, with him. Maggie Mine.

Or does the Old West and a gruff cowboy appeal to you? Sheriff Mac MacDonnell believed his young wife had died back east, until Caitlin shows up in his town. If You Loved Me.

Men … Sometimes the joke is on them

Okay, not only men sometimes say (or do) something they didn’t really think through. Or didn’t take too seriously.

That’s the case with Drake Walters, recently retired “golden boy” pro football player. He is at loose ends trying to figure out the next step in his life.

As a joke, he announces to his best friend’s sister that he is the answer to the dreams Gwenie Lassiter has given up on. He is her E-Mail-Ordered Groom.

Except the joke is on him. She’s the one he has been waiting for all these years.

E-Mail-Ordered  Groom is one of the fourteen stories included in the Cowboy Desire collection now available for pre-order from Amazon.