Cowboy Couture: from the hat to the spurs, ride ’em, cowboy!

Good news for you lovers of all things Western.

A Denver Post article, “Western wear on way to classic status“, has rounded up some reasons behind the popularity surge (not that I ever needed a reason to slap on my Casablanca).

Men's Milano Fur Felt Dress Western Hat - The Casablanca Fur Felt

The Western market is getting a boost from such sources as Style.com, which dubs one of the top trends this season “New Frontier.” And this month’s Harper’s Bazaar has a “Best Western” layout of items that promise to “kick-start your wardrobe.” All proof, says Daniel DeWeese, editor of Western Lifestyle Retailer magazine, “that Western wear is having a huge influence on mainstream fashion.”

Popular culture continues to play a role too. The straw cowgirl hat Julia Roberts wore in “Runaway Bride” has been hot ever since the movie came out in 1999, and Madonna’s sparkly rodeo queen hats and clothes in her 2000 “Music” album and videos had an impact too.

“Western wear has been a hip thing among models, TV and movie stars,” and that filters down, DeWeese says.

Women's Scala Toyo Shapeable Western Hat - The Black Midnight

“It will start with celebrities and boutiques on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles, then everyone else follows them,” says Steve Weil, vice president of Rockmount Ranch Wear in Denver. “It’s a rejection of conventional fashion, the boring mainstream.”

“The Europeans view (Western wear) from a distance that we can’t,” says Tyler Thoreson, executive editor at men.style.com, the website for GQ and Details magazines. “They’re an ocean away and can look at American iconography and just go with it. We’re too close to it to have that much fun with it.”

But that’s OK, because in America, Western is becoming a classic, Weil says. “It has earned a credibility and doesn’t necessarily cycle in and out of fashion as it did in the past,” he says.

“Parts of Western are staple and just as much in fashion this season as the next, whether it’s a hat or boots or a belt. It’s a firm part of the fashion scene and will remain so for the long haul.”

Now for them riding lessons…

Thanks for reading,
Steve Singer
CEO Hartford York

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Published in: on January 17, 2006 at 12:06 pm  Leave a Comment  

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