What began as a pastime, turned into a 35 year journey of making custom braided rawhide horse gear by this cowboy, Vince Donley. Throughout, he has strived to keep the functional traditions of the American cowboy, while accepting the challenge of creating unique, one-of-a-kind pieces to accommodate the braded rawhide gear collectors and who ring competitors.
Originally inspired by the late braider, Jack Sheppard, Vince has been encouraged by the fellow cowboys, saddle makers Don Butler and the Don King family, and by the clinician Buck Brannaman. His refined techniques are reflected in complementary color-interwoven patterns and braided transitions found throughout his quirts, bosals, and rein/romal sets.
With the resurgence of interest in the skills of the vaquero and the demand for quality hand made gear, Vince remains ever focused on this goal of producing traditional American Cowboy horse gear.
Vince's braided works have been exhibited in the "Trappings of Texas Show" in Alpine for many years, He has also exhibited in the "I See by Your Outfit, You are a Cowboy" show in Sun Valley Idaho, the 14th Annual Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elk, Nevada and the "Heart of the West" show in Lander Wyoming and the "Art of the Horse" show in Cody, Wyoming. In 2012, Vince was selected "Braider of the Year" by the Academy of Western Artists.