Bits and Spurs
For equestrians, a horse bit and spurs are among the most basic of gear. A subtle cue from the reins and a little pressure from the feet and you’re off and running. Any local tack store will carry suitable versions that won’t cost you more than a few twenties. But for deep-pocketed cowboys and cowgirls who value works of art over utilitarian tools, here are four head-turning style statements by Texas metalworkers.
1. Former cowboy Brian Mauney apprenticed with silversmith Wes Griffin before breaking out on his own nine years ago. The Evant resident’s Broken Heart Cowboy steel spurs took more than 85 hours to make. $2,000; 281-898-0787
2. This signal bit by San Angelo’s Mike Anders is for a horse with a seasoned rider. Designed in the opulent vaquero tradition, the piece is inlaid with silver and colored using bluing salts. $3,000; andersgear.com
3. One of the state’s preeminent traditional cowboy artists, Russell Yates, of Rotan, created these spurs, adorned with sterling silver and 24-karat gold, to show at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, in Oklahoma City. $21,300; 325-721-5236
4. After a car accident left Rankin bull rider Dossie Cribbs paralyzed twelve years ago, he began making jewelry, spurs, and buckles. Today there’s a fourteen-month wait for his custom designs. $2,300; dossiecribbs.com