New holster maker

This is a discussion on New holster maker within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; My friend Skip Ritchie a longtime business partner of Lou Alessi has gone into the holster business operating out of Lou's old shop in Amherst. ...

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Thread: New holster maker

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array torrejon224's Avatar
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    New holster maker

    My friend Skip Ritchie a longtime business partner of Lou Alessi has gone into the holster business operating out of Lou's old shop in Amherst. He will be making all the products Lou did but under different names. Lightning Arms Sports will be carrying his products and to me that speaks volumes! Company name will be Ritchie Holsters, e-mail is ritchieholsters@verizon.net and the website won't be operational for a few weeks. He's sending me some holsters and pouches and I'll post pics when I get them. Skip and Lou worked together for over 15 years so he knows his stuff.

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array jwhite75's Avatar
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    Please keep us updated...I will be very interested to see what comes out of his shop.
    Friends don't let friends be MALL NINJAS.


    I am just as nice as anyone lets me be and can be just as mean as anyone makes me. - Quoted from Terryger, New member to our forum.

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    Member Array rccolt.45's Avatar
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    Is he taking over for Lou's wife and family or will they be competing against each other???

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    VIP Member Array bsnow's Avatar
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    Keep us updated, thanks.
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    VIP Member Array jwhite75's Avatar
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    I think he will be competing against the "new" Alessi. They moved shops down near Siafu....See sticky at top of holsters forum.
    Friends don't let friends be MALL NINJAS.


    I am just as nice as anyone lets me be and can be just as mean as anyone makes me. - Quoted from Terryger, New member to our forum.

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    Member Array ejes's Avatar
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    I'll look at what he has to offer; Lou's stuff was impeccable. But, something about using Lou's designs, renaming them, and then competing against his widow doesn't seem quite right to me. Is this really what he intends to do or is there some sort of agreement or business understanding between the two we don't know about? I know Skip went above and beyond to help out Lou when he was sick, and then to help the family after his passing, so this just sounds odd to me.

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    Senior Member Array torrejon224's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rccolt.45 View Post
    Is he taking over for Lou's wife and family or will they be competing against each other???
    Competing. Same basic product line with different names. I have seen Skip's work and it is outstanding! Lou and Skip were partners for many years and like a lot of other designs other than the talon clip nothing was patened to the best of my knowledge. Competition is a great thing, it can help keep prices down and maybe even delivery times will be shorter. I wish both companies the absolute best of luck. There is plenty of business out there for both to survive.

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    VIP Member Array semperfi.45's Avatar
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    This sounds interesting.

    Having owned Alessi holsters, I would like to see the designs without the Talon clip. Also some original designs would be cool, so he's not riding the coat tails of Lou.

    I think I've seen the future of custom holsters and when I get that patent pending cowhide in my hands I'll be able to confirm that. Custom holster crafting seems like a tough way to make a living. I'll keep an eye out for his stuff, I hope he does well.
    Training means learning the rules. Experience means learning the exceptions.

  10. #9
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    I would not automatically just jump to any ill conclusions.
    15 years is a long time to work with another person and some of the Alessi designs may very well be his...or they may have co-designed some rigs and/or made modifications and improvements on holsters together and as a team.

    And also (in life) Lou was an incredibly generous and selfless person with regard to sharing his knowledge and offering his kind help and technical assistance to anybody that needed advice.
    He helped many a holster maker get started in business.
    He was just a genuinely good human being.
    He would never deny another fellow leather worker a chance to make a living making holsters.
    It's not an easy way to make a living.
    Making ultra high quality gun-leather is difficult and often frustrating work.



    Quote Originally Posted by ejes View Post
    I'll look at what he has to offer; Lou's stuff was impeccable. But, something about using Lou's designs, renaming them, and then competing against his widow doesn't seem quite right to me. Is this really what he intends to do or is there some sort of agreement or business understanding between the two we don't know about? I know Skip went above and beyond to help out Lou when he was sick, and then to help the family after his passing, so this just sounds odd to me.

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    Member Array ejes's Avatar
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    There was no "conclusion" jumped to. I believe I asked a question about the very points you raise about the designs. Additionally I made the same positive comments about Skip's generosity and kindness toward Lou and his family. Please don't take one comment out of an entire statement and highlight it, as it puts it into a completely different context. I merely pointed out that the OP may have made a statement that would lead one to think it was odd.

    Quote Originally Posted by QKShooter View Post
    I would not automatically just jump to any ill conclusions.
    15 years is a long time to work with another person and some of the Alessi designs may very well be his...or they may have co-designed some rigs and/or made modifications and improvements on holsters together and as a team.

    And also (in life) Lou was an incredibly generous and selfless person with regard to sharing his knowledge and offering his kind help and technical assistance to anybody that needed advice.
    He helped many a holster maker get started in business.
    He was just a genuinely good human being.
    He would never deny another fellow leather worker a chance to make a living making holsters.
    It's not an easy way to make a living.
    Making ultra high quality gun-leather is difficult and often frustrating work.

  12. #11
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    Question

    Feel better now?

    > "Also some original designs would be cool, so he's not riding the coat tails of Lou."

    > "Is he taking over for Lou's wife and family or will they be competing against each other???"

    > "I think he will be competing against the "new" Alessi."


    I would not automatically just jump to any ill conclusions.
    15 years is a long time to work with another person and some of the Alessi designs may very well be his...or they may have co-designed some rigs and/or made modifications and improvements on holsters together and as a team.

    And also (in life) Lou was an incredibly generous and selfless person with regard to sharing his knowledge and offering his kind help and technical assistance to anybody that needed advice.
    He helped many a holster maker get started in business.
    He was just a genuinely good human being.
    He would never deny another fellow leather worker a chance to make a living making holsters.
    It's not an easy way to make a living.
    Making ultra high quality gun-leather is difficult and often frustrating work.

  13. #12
    Member Array ejes's Avatar
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    Never felt poorly to begin with, thanks.

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    Member Array Lasports's Avatar
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    Time to set the record straight.
    To the best of our knowledge Mrs. Alessi (Ida Marie) sold the Alessi Holster Company and its name last year. It is also true that Lou's daughter is working for the new Alessi Holster company.
    Charles (Skip) Ritchie was the prodigy and business partner of Lou Alessi from 1984-1996. Skip worked with Lou during the last year of his life which rekindled his love for holster making and resulted in the formation of the Ritchie Leather Co., Inc. with his brother Bob. Skip is offering his version of holsters he and Lou made: CQ-QR (CQC/s), Ankle Rigs, Stakeout (PCH) and others.
    Skip's craftmanship is among the best out there and those who place orders with him will not be disappointed. His business is operated out of the old Alessi Shop on Niagara Falls Blvd. in Amherst, NY 716-691-6300. His website now in construction will be www.ritchieholsters.com. Over the years we enjoyed our business relationship and friendship with Lou and are looking forward to continuing in the same spirit with Skip and his brother Bob.

  15. #14
    VIP Member Array jwhite75's Avatar
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    That is a very nice thing to do make sure every body understands the dynamics. Thank you Lightning Arms.
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    I am just as nice as anyone lets me be and can be just as mean as anyone makes me. - Quoted from Terryger, New member to our forum.

  16. #15
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    Great & helpful addition by LAS. Much appreciated.

    And ejes - My apology for misinterpreting the intent of your post #6.
    It's extremely difficult to always know exactly where folks are coming from just by reading a forum post.
    It's something that never would have happened were we sitting in the same room together talking about it.

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