By Tank Hoover
With today’s mass manufacturing, profit-driven market, quality handmade goods have mostly gone by the wayside, replaced by cheaply built merchandise. I’ve always been a believer in the old axiom “cheap is too expensive” so buy quality goods lasting a lifetime. True handcrafted goods are rare today fitting this age-old idea.
St. Frances of Assisi said, “To work with your hands is to be a laborer, to work with your hands and head is to be a craftsman, to work with your hands, head and heart is to be an artist.” When I read those words, I immediately think of leather maker extraordinaire, Mike “Doc” Barranti of Barranti Leather.
Doc’s hand-work is compelling and historically accurate. Check out the
video at the end of the article to watch him create a rifle scabbard!
To handle one of Doc’s creations, you know you’re experiencing something special. He uses the minimal amount of leather necessary to skillfully optimize the function of his wares, while maintaining an artistic flair tastefully showcasing his expertise and experience. Be it holster, belt, scabbard, leather portrait, purse or wallet, when Doc creates it, the leather comes to life!
Although worthy of being exhibited as a museum piece, Doc’s leather is made to be used, and used hard! Born a century too late, Doc replicates the gun leather classics with accurate renditions of such notable leathermen as S.D. Myres, A.W. Brill, Texas Ranger Tol Dawson, Milt Sparks and Garrett Allen, just to name a few.
Doc isn’t trying to pull the hide over people’s eyes, rather, he just believes in using that hide in making yesteryear’s classics for your enjoyment. It’s obvious his heart and soul are the driving force flowing from his skillful hands when he revives a piece of tanned hide into a masterful piece of art — functional art — made for guns.
If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a short video must be worth tenfold that. Click the link below to experience a Barranti masterpiece in a rifle scabbard he made. The skill and love are obvious and I think you’ll agree when I say he has a knack for bringing a piece of hide to life.
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