Perhaps you have heard of Frontier Gunleather, a small store situated on Hwy 111 in Rancho Mirage since the early 1990s. I remember the first time I wandered into the store–I had dropped my son off at the dentist down the street and was looking for a cup of coffee and, well, when you have read every Louis L’Amour book ever written, you simply do not NOT enter a store with such a name. Greeted by the smell of leather and sights of old west holsters.
I had already thought of getting into Cowboy Action Shooting (CAS), but after being right there amidst old west gunleather and talking to the manager, Matt Whitaker, I was on a mission. I went and bought my first single action .357 revolver/ a few days later. CAS, by the way, are shooting clubs where you don old west attire and shoot old west style guns- basically you are an old west cowboy for a day. Go watch a bit.
Old west holsters are not the only product produced by Frontier Gunleather however, they make quality holsters (including for concealed carry) for a wide range of modern weaponry also. Visit their website for a full catalog.
Frontier Gunleather was opened by the legendary John Bianchi in the early 90s, after he had sold his very successful Bianchi International gunleather enterprise. You can read more about the fascinating and storied career of John Bianchi here and here.
Don’t go driving by the Rancho Mirage storefront though! Matt Whitaker is the new owner and the store has recently moved to Dinah Shore Drive in Palm Desert (73900 Dinah Shore Drive #205, to be exact).
Below is the press release from Matt Whitaker:
Frontier Gunleather Press Release
Frontier Gunleather has been acquired by Matt Whitaker, the long-time general manager and Master Craftsman for John Bianchi, who personally chose Matt to carry on the legacy of Frontier Gunleather. Building upon a rich heritage, the handcrafted products continue to be a true art form, representing an investment in tomorrow’s antiquities.
Handcrafted the old-fashioned way, one-at-a-time by our master craftsmen, Frontier Gunleather, continues a revival of the turn-of-the-century styles and craftsmanship. From personal defense holsters to Old-West styles, Frontier Gunleather has the experience and skills to cater to a diverse range of firearm enthusiasts. There is scarcely a holster produced today that does not show the Bianchi design influence. These concepts, deeply influenced by the vision of John Bianchi, have profoundly shaped the way millions of shooters think about guns and holsters.
Matt Whitaker, with years of experience as the general manager and a dedicated craftsman, has earned the trust and respect of the gunleather community. In acquiring Frontier Gunleather, he upholds the legacy of John Bianchi, one of the oldest and most trusted names in the “Gunleather” industry. With a 60-year-old worldwide reputation for premier quality, John Bianchi’s influence on Frontier Gunleather will forever be visible in the design and quality of each item.
At Frontier Gunleather, we believe that the fit and finish of your holster should be as important as the fit and finish of your firearm. Our continuing commitment to excellence, pride, and quality remains our guiding principle. With each product we make, we continue to uphold our reputation as the best in the business, with a dedication to craftsmanship that is built into every piece.
Unlike production holsters that are made to accommodate a variety of handguns within a size range, our holsters are made to fit your specific handgun. (check our online gunlist to determine if we can craft a holster for your handgun.) Simply determine which of our many holster designs will fit the carry method that you desire, and we will make the holster for your specific firearm.