PRODUCTION

Meet Alison Moore: Vintage Cowboy Boot Collector


March 19, 2022

Meet Alison! Alison is the Clothing Area Specialist at the Wilco Springfield store. She has been working at Wilco for over 3 years and has a passion for collecting vintage cowboy boots. She has some great tips to share for those who might be interested in searching for authentic vintage boots as well as some great suggestions for boots you can find at your local Wilco store. Read more about her cowboy boot collecting hobby below!

What are a few of your favorite things about working at Wilco?
I love working here, the co-workers are awesome, the customers are great, Wilco has our back they are very supportive of us as employees and you can’t beat the hours. They hours are great!

row of colorful western boots

Something unique I heard you was that you are into collecting Cowboy Boots. Tell me more about that!
Something unique about myself is that kind of ties into Wilco is that I do like to collect cowboy boots. People here know I do because I am always wearing a new pair of boots.

How did you get into collecting cowboy boots and when did you start?
I had horses back when I was in middle school, so we started showing. I still own my first pair of cowboy boots, a pair of Acmes. My dad has always been interested in the western culture and he’s collected bits, bridles, and antique saddles. I will be amassing a lot of his collection to go with my boots.

row of colorful western boots on wood bench

Do you remember the first pair of vintage boots you purchased that got you hooked?
My first real pair of cowboy boots was when I had my first horse at about 11, 12 years old and I have always loved cowboy boots since then. My true collecting didn’t start until about 2015 when I found a pair of vintage 1980 Panhandle Slims at a thrift store in Southern California. I still have my vintage panhandle slims, I now have two pairs of Panhandle Slims. They stopped making boots around the 1980’s. Not sure how long they made them.

side view of black and white western boots

How many boots do you have in your collection?
When I started in 2015, I had previously bought a pair of ACME bright red boots when I was working with a horse rescue. Since then, I would check out thrift stores and such and I am now up to about 37 pairs of boots with my last two bought in the last two weeks.

toe detail of silver and gold western boots

Where do you find the boots your collect?
I find most of my boots on eBay. I do find them at the local thrift stores like Goodwill and Saint Vincent De Paul, I’ve purchased them on Poshmark and Mercari. I am also in a Facebook Group – the Cowboy Boot Collectors. From the Facebook group, I learned the older boots they used to do the sizing different than they do now and I didn’t know that in the beginning when I first started. I don’t think other shoe companies use that type of sizing, so they just transitioned over to the more common and adapted in the mid-70’s. That’s when the boot sizing changed over.

Is there a certain type or brand of boot you like to search for on your hunts?
I do look for certain brands/ Tony Lamas are probably my favorite and then Justin Boot (which we do carry). Luchese, Olathe, Larry Mahan (which is an Oregon born rodeo star, he has his own line of boots), Dan Post and Laredo. I probably have more Tony Lamas than anything.

silver and gold western boots laying on tissue paper

What is your favorite boot that you have in your collection and what features make it special to you?
I have a couple favorites it depends on the time of year. I do like all my Tony Lama wingtips, they’re my favorite to wear probably is my game day boots which are bright green with black wing tips so I wear those every Oregon game day. I do have a pair of red patent leather Tony Lamas which are just fantastic, but they’re not a work boot. These ones (the ones I am wearing) I will wear to work.

Do you wear all your boots?
I wear all the boots that fit me. Some of them unfortunately when you buy on eBay or Poshmark, the sellers don’t realize that some of the numbers are not the actual size and so they’ve been misrepresented and they’re too small. So a pair will end up with my daughter and the other pair of patent leather Tony Lamas that are just to fantastic, they will be displayed.

side view of gray reptile skin western boots

How do you take care of them or any tips on keeping them looking like new?
For the care of the boots, I use a lotion called Cadillac that I first bought for a handbag and was recommended for boots also. What we have here is a little too heavy for the finer leathers, so I actually use the Obenauf’s on the soles of my leather soled boots to keep them from drying out and cracking.

Obenauf's Leather Oil, 8 oz.

Not available online.

{{storeQuantity}} in stock in {{wg.store.city}}

Limited stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Out of stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Not carried in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Cannot be sold in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Obenauf's Heavy Duty Leather Preservative, 4 oz.

Not available online.

{{storeQuantity}} in stock in {{wg.store.city}}

Limited stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Out of stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Not carried in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Cannot be sold in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Obenauf's Leather Watershield, 8 oz.

Not available online.

{{storeQuantity}} in stock in {{wg.store.city}}

Limited stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Out of stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Not carried in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Cannot be sold in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Obenauf's Heavy Duty Leather Preservative, 8 oz.

Not available online.

{{storeQuantity}} in stock in {{wg.store.city}}

Limited stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Out of stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Not carried in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Cannot be sold in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Do you have any tips or recommendations for someone interested in starting a boot collection?
The first thing I would do is if you have Facebook, join the Cowboy Boot Collectors group for advice. They’ve taught me a lot because I didn’t know about the old way of sizing on the inside of the boots if you want true vintage boots. They can help you identify boots. If you’re not afraid to maybe take a gamble on something not fitting or not being as in good of condition as you thought, then eBay or Poshmark. Just checking out the local thrift stores.

row of 3 pairs of western boots on wood stove

Do you have a favorite brand of boot we sell at Wilco and why is it your favorite? If so, which ones are you eyeing right now for your collection?
Justin is one my favorite brands, but my favorite boots to wear are my Durangos for work when it’s raining, I usually wear a rubber sole. My Durangos are my most comfortable. In the women’s boots, I like Ariat. Ariat has a lot of nice dressier boots which a lot of women will come in looking for, for their show boots. Ariat does do nice dressy boots; they’ve got some really pretty ones out there. Right now, if I was to get another boot it would probably be the Ariat Bright Eyes, because it would be perfect for work and you could go out afterwards because it’s dressier than say the Fatbaby, so it’s a good transitional boot and I’ve sold a ton of those because I recommend them a lot.

Ariat Ladies Bright Eyes II Western Boot, 10033983

Not available online.

{{storeQuantity}} in stock in {{wg.store.city}}

Limited stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Out of stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Not carried in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Cannot be sold in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Durango Men's Rebel Waterproof Western boot, DDB0163

Not available online.

{{storeQuantity}} in stock in {{wg.store.city}}

Limited stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Out of stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Not carried in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Cannot be sold in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Ariat Ladies Breakout Western Boot, 10029647

Not available online.

{{storeQuantity}} in stock in {{wg.store.city}}

Limited stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Out of stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Not carried in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Cannot be sold in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Ariat Ladies Anthem Round Toe Western Boot, 10029510

Not available online.

{{storeQuantity}} in stock in {{wg.store.city}}

Limited stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Out of stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Not carried in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Cannot be sold in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Ariat Ladies Fatbaby Heritage Dapper Western Boot, 10029492

Not available online.

{{storeQuantity}} in stock in {{wg.store.city}}

Limited stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Out of stock in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Not carried in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Cannot be sold in {{wg.store.city}} Check nearby stores

Category
Author
Tags