Sorry to say, but money burns a hole in my pocket. I had come into some extra money last summer and my first thought was I needed to get a pair of Windwalker boots. Rich had gotten a pair for his Ren Faire costume and he really liked the way they wear. The cool thing about these boots: You get to design the pattern on them yourself.First, I have to tell you about Windwalkers. Tim and Mary are the leather master and designer for Windwalkers. We found them at the Bristol Ren Faire some years ago. I’ve always admired their work and the wares that they displayed. They traveled all the way from Snowflake, Arizona to be at the faire. They rented workspace nearby to work on shoes in the evenings.
About 6 or 7 years ago, I wandered into the booth looking for shoes to wear with my costumes. They made these great sandals that feel like walking on clouds. You can get them wet and everything. I ended up hiking in my sandals on one vacation and they were wonderful for that as well. I have lots of comfort and they give me traction on the mountainsides that we climb. I was super impressed then. So 6 or 7 years later, I’m still wearing my sandals. They need new soles, but those are free as long as I can send them to Arizona for the work.
Here’s how Rich’s boots went. He decided that he wanted tall boots. That meant he picked a 7-button style. Then he worked with Mary to come up with a design. After talking to Mary for a bit, it came out that Rich liked to brew his own beer. Mary decided that he needed to put hops and barley on the front of the boots. We found some pictures and came up with a crude drawing. Mary took that and created the beautiful pair of boots that Rich wears today.
Knowing beforehand what I needed to do. I began the process and came up with the things I like and what I enjoy. I had thought about a garden, but that seemed too much. I was looking through some of my quilting books and discovered that you could use the same pattern from a quilt and transfer it to the boots!
I found a spinning wheel pattern that I thought would transfer nicely. I printed out patterns and designs so that I was prepared when it came time to talk to Mary about the design of my boots.
I went to the Ren Faire last July with all the necessary patterns and ideas. My first stop was to the Windwalker booth. Of course, Rich walks in and they know him immediately by his boots. He’s known to Tim and Mary as the brewer’s boots. Mine will be known as the quilter’s boots.
Tim took the fitting and the casting. He helped me pick out the basic leather for the boots. In this case, I went with a dark black leather that was soft and smooth. Then it was time to talk to Mary about the design.
I presented my idea with the patterns and layout. Mary liked it right away. She had not done anything with a quilt design before. This was going to unique for her as well. We discussed colors and where all of the patterns would appear. I specifically wanted turquoise and hot pink. The rest I left up to Mary to decide once she got home and could look at her store of leather. I put down the deposit for work to begin.
Now it takes a while to get boots. First, they had to go back home to Arizona to their workshop. That wasn’t until October. They had one more stop on the way home from Illinois. I knew I had to be patient and wouldn’t get them for this winter.
About May, I started sending emails to inquire about the status of my boots. Mary replied that they were in the works, but would take a little bit longer to complete. I asked again right after vacation. Mary promised to have them ready in a couple of weeks. Right after the 4th, I got an email asking for the remainder on the boots.
I wrote up the check and sent it right out. On Thursday, the post office attempted to deliver a package to the house. Unfortunately, I went out to do some errands and missed them. Today, I went to the post office to pick up the parcel. My boots!
I came home, but had to run an errand with Rich. He bought a truck this morning and needed moral support as he wrote the deposit check for them to get the vehicle to the dealership. But that’s not important now. I came home and put my feet in the boots for the first time. They are surprisingly comfortable. Pictures were taken and I’m sure I’ll need a few more to show them off properly.
My plan is to wear these boots when the weather is cool and downright cold. They will be great for snow and rain as well since they are waterproofed. This is something I’ll have to keep up with. If they last like my sandals, I should get a good 5 to 7 years out of them before they need to have new soles. They should last for quite a while beyond that though.
I love my new boots and can’t wait to be wearing them. They are extremely colorful and have such a great design on them. Thanks, Mary and Tim, at Windwalkers for making me the greatest pair of boots a girl could ever want!