Category Archives: Vintage Boots

Triad Cowboy Boots

I think “triad” cowboy boots are once again picking up speed. So, what is a triad boot?

A triad boot is a cowboy boot made with three piece construction rather than the traditional four. In this style of boot, there is no heel counter. The boot top extends all the way down to the sole, and the vamp stops inches short of the boot’s side seams, giving this style the look of overlay.

In the 1980’s these were a popular style of dress boot. A couple of attributes make them fancy.

One, when you take away the fender stitching and the heel counter …the vertical styling of these make a girl’s legs look longer, not unlike a pair of uncuffed pants.

Two, these boots work well with exotic and extravagant materials. Since the vamp doesn’t wrap around the sides of the cowboy boot, you can showcase a lizard, snake or stingray skin without extra seams or patchwork piecing.

Today’s triad styles feature hand tooled leather and buck stitching. A new shorthand for luxury. Heritage Boot does a great job of filling their boot tops with stitchwork and balancing the weights of the contrasting leathers (see photo.) I like that.

Sheplers, Timsboots.com and eBay each have a selection of triad cowboy boots, go take a look.

“Riding High”

SANTA BARBARA, CALIF.: President Ronald Reagan shows off his triad cowboy boots after signing the largest budget and tax-cutting measure in U.S. history August 13, 1981 at his “Rancho del Cielo” ranch. Reagan called it “only the beginning” as he set his economic recovery program in motion with the signing at the ranch, where he was vacationing.

CREDIT: UPI 8-21-81 Ron Bennett …purchased on eBay. (Zoom)

Ray Jones Boots

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RecentIy, I got an email that went something like this…
Hi Jennifer … I have five pair of Ray Jones Boots in original boxes almost new!!! One pair worn once!! Any ideas on how to market these to collectors?

 

Now, Ray Jones (Lampasas, TX) is one of those bootmakers who never used labels. That said, I can usually tell a Ray Jones boot just by looking at it. And so can you….
  • The photos above show boots in 2 stitch patterns …that’s one more than I thought Ray had (just kidding.)
  • Look for white piping up the sides, regardless of the color of the boot. That’s a central Texas thing, from Lampasas …up to the Panhandle
  • Ray Jones signature toe stitching or “toebug.” Wide arrowhead tongue shape.
  • Mr. Jones has been called the “King of the Pegs.” He was known to use as many as 300 pegs per pair. Turn a boot over and look for 3 rows of pegs along the arch.

And, finally Ray Jones boots are visually “sturdy,” not tough…sturdy. The have what I call a “standy-uppy” quality that other boots don’t seem to have, even after 30 years. Legend has it, if you manage to take apart a Ray Jones boot top …there might be 1 to 3 layers of brown paper stuck between the leather. At least that’s what I’ve heard.

Remember, when you can’t find a label in a vintage cowboy boot, you want to look for the story. One like this…
I purchased these boots from the original owner in Texas who cherished them. Kept them in the original boxes and wore them very few times!! It was a rare chance to purchase them and hear how he saved up to buy Jones Boots every year or two because of the long waiting lists in Lampasas. He told me Mrs. Jones would sign the inside boot tops with the customers name in her script. One of these boots which has a Lampasas, Texas postmark on the box (Aug. 1981) was signed …… Jones & Ray Jones bootmakers in Lampasas, Texas. I have never seen that in a RJ Boot before? Their were no labels in a RJ Boot nor a label on his boot boxes.
These boots will be showing up on eBay soon. Keep an eye on the seller’s listings.
Best of luck on your bidding. They are beautiful boots.