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Meet Barbara and Donald Mohr of Southwest Distinctions in Gold Canyon

Today we’d like to introduce you to Barbara and Donald Mohr.

Don has always had a great interest in hand tooled leather and spent some time working with an old time saddle maker while his wife Barb was showing her Quarter Horses. With his newly learned talents Don started creating some of Barb’s horse gear. In the early 90’s Indian beaded western belts were becoming very popular among the Quarter Horse crowd, so they started to focus on creating unique hand tooled inlaid beaded belts. Making these belts without a mentor was quite a challenge. Barb learned how to do loom beading by studying many craft magazines and Don’s belt making was also self-taught. Soon with customer requests they decided to include a dog collar line as well.

Southwest Distinctions has been a vendor at the AQHA Word Show in Oklahoma City, NCHA Cutting in Fort Worth Texas and the Paint Horse Word Show also in Fort Worth Texas, as well as having a couple wholesale accounts.

Keeping up with the times, they have also developed a website for their customers’ convenience

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It has not been a smooth road. We both had to work a full time job while trying to develop our leather business. This meant working nights and weekends and any earned vacation time was spent at trade shows or making product.

Also trying to find a web designer has been extremely difficult. We are now working with an excellent web designer “Salterra Web Design” in Scottsdale Arizona, which has turned our business around, we are so grateful to have finally found a web designer who understands our needs.

Southwest Distinctions – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Southwest Distinctions specializes in upscale custom made beaded leather belts, tooled belts, beaded dog collars and both beaded and custom leather guitar straps. Don individually designs and handcrafts each dog collar and belt while Barb does all the bead work. Working together as a team allows us the opportunity to make a superior handmade quality product. The fact that we are able work hand and hand together designing each order gives our customers a very unique product which is not available in any store.

Don is currently in the process of introducing an additional new line of gun leather products, which will be a product line of Southwest Distinctions called Flat Iron Custom Leather, this new line of products should be available on line January 2018.

We are so proud to say we are like a mom and pop shop creating all hand made products made in the USA with each item custom made not mass produced. We use our home as a shop which works out great.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
I would say there are many proud moments of our career. We are so proud to receive such wonderful feedback from both our International and USA customers and to think we created this beautiful leather business all on our own what more could we want.

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