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My Story

Hey there! My name is Ethan Girty and I am the owner of Girty Leather Company located in eastern Oklahoma. My passion for leather work started a few years back when I began getting involved in the rodeo world. Like a lot of people, I was completely ignorant of the custom leatherwork industry up until that point. I had no idea there were people running small businesses making custom leather products, it sounds pretty ignorant but it's true. I fell in love with the idea of it; specifically, the western heritage behind it.

I did not grow up in a western lifestyle at all, but I always enjoyed the idea of cowboys and rodeo. I wanted to be a bull rider since I was about three years old. Almost two decades later I decided to pursue that dream while I still could. I started getting on bulls when I was 20 and it turned out that I loved it just as much as I knew I would, even though still to this day I haven't won anything! What you quickly find out is leather is one of the main staples of that culture and has been for over a century. Belts, bags, saddles, chaps, wallets, boots, tack, the list can go on and on. Leather is such a versatile product, it can be used for so many things, even beyond the western lifestyle; however, vegetable tanned leather, because of its properties, can be utilized to make every day functional items into a piece of art! That is what grabbed my attention.

Carving and tooling leather began decades ago and has developed into many different styles and techniques today. After learning so much about the leather trade and studying different designs and styles, I decided to try my hand at it as a hobby. In January 2021 I purchased a basic tooling kit with a few practice items in it. This is where many talented makers started in the past. I learned very quickly that this process was not near as easy as the pros made it look. I burned through those projects fairly quick and found myself craving more of it. For months I was spending all my time and money on leather and staying up until 1 or 2 in the morning every night trying to get better and learn as much as I could. Eventually, I started to get the hang of it and really thought I could start providing quality products for people. At this point in my life I was married, we literally just had our first baby, and I was working a full time salaried job. So what could go wrong with starting a business?

A few months down the line and I am obsessed with leather work to the point I decide I might as well quit my job, focus on this business, and run it from home so I can work and stay home with my baby while my wife pursues her career as a Registered Nurse. Sounds like a wonderful plan right? So here we are. Right now I am currently taking on as many orders as I can being the sole operator of this business. At the same time, trying to make sure both my girls have all the attention and love they deserve.

I am working out of a spare bedroom and garage but I do have dreams of having my own shop one day. I intend to grow my knowledge, skills, and business to the extent that I can provide the best possible products for my customers. Without all of you I would not be able to be here today. One thing I can promise is that every product I sell is completely made by my hands and is given the maximum amount of attention to detail as I can offer. I will not send something out the door that I would not enjoy and use for myself. My biggest fear is that I disappoint a customer or send out a janky product. As much time as I put into it and the amount of stress I create for myself now, I wouldn't trade this for anything. I love being able to design products with people and then use my hands and imagination to bring that idea to life. I still have a huge learning curve to conquer, but I look forward to it every day! I still get on bulls when I get the chance, but I have found out that leather work is my one true passion.

I mention all of that just to say thank you for your support of Girty Leather Co. If you read this entire story, whether you enjoyed it or think I'm an idiot, I hope it gives you a better understanding of who I am and why I am doing this. Thank you for your time! 


The story continues! Rather than deleting and replacing what I had previously written out as “My Story”, I decided to just add to it and build a timeline!

Just as we have continued to grow this business, our family has grew too! In February 2023 me and my wife were blessed with two twin babies in addition to our now two year old daughter! As of right now, nothing will be changing. I still have full intentions of being the best stay at home dad I can be, while also continuing to build this 4th baby of mine, the business! We have been blessed with many customers over the past couple years and want to thank each of you for your support! 

As you can imagine, time is very limited and scattered for us now. Going from one baby to three can honestly be a big difference and is quite a bit more overwhelming than I planned out in my head! I am still taking on as many orders as I can possibly handle and continuing to learn and hone my skills every day. I have upgraded my work area to more of a small shop style now, which helps out tremendously! Custom work is my main focus; however, I do try to keep some in-stock items available when I get the chance. I also started a YouTube channel recently and am trying to be as active as I can on there. I am obviously still not an expert or master leather worker, but I want to document this journey and share it with you all. 

Its honestly crazy that we’re still here chasing this dream and trying to make it all work. Without all of you, none of this is possible. Thank you so much for your continued support! Feel free to reach out to us anytime to discuss any potential orders or if you have any questions. Thank you again, I hope you have a blessed day!