At the Montana Horseman Saddle Building school, we have trained students in the art of saddle building from all over the world, including New Zealand, France, Sweden, South Africa, Canada, and Australia to name a few.  We have also had students in the class from most states in the United States.  We welcome anyone who is interested in learning the art of saddle building! Learn the ins and outs of saddle building from industry masters.

A $500 non-refundable deposit is required with your application.  The balance is due upon arrival, no exceptions.

The Montana Horseman Saddle Building School recently doubled in size!  We have expanded our school from 1500 square feet to 3000 square feet.  We provide more room to work on your saddle, sew, tool, learn, and get individual help!

Your tuition includes the cost of materials for your personal saddle.  Bedrooms are available, but please book early as space is limited.  Rooms are included in tuition costs, meals are not.  Each room includes a refrigerator, microwave, dishes, silverware, bedding, electric frying pan, and a crock pot.  You will be responsible for your own shop clean up, laundry, cooking, and bedroom clean up.  There is no maid service.  Class size is usually kept at 4-5 students as there are only 4 bedrooms.  Exceptions would be if there were to be a couple taking the course or someone living in this area who could drive back and forth.  There is no discount if you live in this area and drive back and forth to class.

  • We now have 4 bedrooms and 2 baths.
  • Each student now has their own spacious 6’x8’ work table
  • A new conference table for discussion and learning.
  • A new leather tooling station.
  • Listen to music while you work!
  • A collection of magazines when you relax


Montana Horseman Saddle Building School has a rich history thanks to its dedicated students. When started this school, we had absolutely no idea how many international students would be coming to Montana.  Many members of our family have been fortunate to meet and in some cases, become good friends with students!  The school has become such a part of our parents lives and they truly enjoy it.  Us kids (there are five of us), love to see our parents having built this school up from nothing to where it is today.  We all have learned a lot from people all over the world, and it has been very interesting.  Coming to this school, we promise you will learn more than you though you wanted to learn, and more than you thought there was to learn about horses & saddles! 


For every student that takes the class, a unique saddle is waiting to be built.  From basket weave to carved scenery, we have seen outstanding artistry.  And whether a student continues on to have his own shop, school, or build a saddle now and then for a friend.  It is a pleasure and an honor to have them in our school.

Montana Horseman Saddle Building School is one of the most all-encompassing schools available.  Instruction is integrated with a “hands on” “learn by doing” approach.  Five weeks of detailed instruction and assistance leads each student through design and layout to a top quality Western saddle.  Instruction includes the history of antique saddles and the makers.

All classes include the following:

  • Use of leather tools and heavy leather sewing machines
  • Leather tooling & carving
  • Saddle design and pattern making
  • Study of inherent problems such as saddle bridging, weight distribution and fit
  • Study of animal conformation and the influence on tree style and measurements
  • Inherent problems with leather . . . “what to do when?”
  • Construction techniques of leading saddle makers and application to student saddles
  • Repair, replacement of saddle parts and refurbishing
  • Advice and assistance with starting a saddle business
  • Catalogues and lists of suppliers
  • Leave with your own personalized saddle that you built
  • A notebook filled with information and your notes

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