Don made the charro style tree for this saddle with a 16-inch seat, 12-inch front, 4 1/2-inch cantle and 6-inch wood post horn. The saddle has an inlaid bullhide pad and is full flower tooled with a dyed border and antiqued finish. The saddle is an 8-button style, with flat plate rigging, semi-square skirts and exposed stirrup leathers. All silver work is Don’s creation and includes a sterling silver horn belly, conchos, hobble strap buckles and rivets. Other features include engraved sterling silver overlaid on blackened brass rigging plates and stirrups.
DON BUTLER, Saddlemaker, Sheridan, Wyoming
Don Butler was born in Montana and raised on ranches in southern Montana and northern Wyoming. He cowboyed for big ranches in the area, started colts, ran a ranch, and after serving in Vietnam started his own cattle operation with the help of his wife and three kids. In the mid 1970s he had to make a choice between pursuing a career in art or in saddlemaking. The latter won out and Don’s Custom Cowboy Shop was established, offering an opportunity to use his creative skills and provide an immediate income for his young family and cattle outfit. Don is especially known for his carving skills, and his creations in leather and silver work have received many awards in gear exhibits across the region.
Photos by Adam Jahiel