A family tradition that started in southern Illinois made its way to Benton, AR after a few detours. As a child, Bryan Wildt, now owner of Wildt Leather, saw his father work his way from salesman to leather repair shop owner in 1972. The family focused on shoe and boot repair to start. As the business grew, Bryan helped during the evenings and weekends.
When Bryan graduated from high school, he decided to leave the family business and try his
luck in Arkansas, where he avoided leather making altogether for about five years. When he
was ready to try the craft again, his parents were ready for a change themselves, and they
joined Bryan in Star City.
They opened Wildt Leather in 1998. Twenty years later, Bryan moved the operation to Benton, AR in September of 2018. Now, the retail store offers quality, carefully made leather men’s belts, bill folds, holsters, suspenders, knife sheaves, tote bags, and women’s bags. The repair and leather shop is connected to the store, and Wildt offers repairs on shoes, bags, and saddles along with his original products.
Visit the store to handle the quality leather work in person and see what new designs Bryan is putting together--he’s pretty excited about the new wax canvas leather bag, which is a
combination messenger bag pattern. For those familiar with the area, Wildt Leather is eight blocks from Harps Food, and five minutes off the Interstate using exit 121. For those using a navigation system, the store can be found at 3434 A Salem Road, Benton, AR. The hours are 10 am to 6 pm, Monday through Friday or on Saturdays by appointment. The
store is closed on Sunday.