From Western Wear to Cowboy Chic

Published: 09th January 2009
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If you're looking for a reliable point of reference in terms of what's fashionable each season, look no further than the runways of the world's fashion capitols--New York, Los Angeles, Milan and Paris. Now, you're probably thinking, "you're not gonna catch me wearing some runway get-up in my daily meanderings about town!" And of course, I wouldn't expect you to go to work or attend your kid's soccer game in runway couture, but you can look at what shows up on runways, take elements of those styles, and scale them down to looks appropriate for daily life.

I was pretty pleased to learn that in Paris recently, fashion house Hermes showcased its spring/summer collection for 2009, designed by Jean-Paul Gaultier. And believe it or not, it was all had its roots in American western apparel! The designer's reasoning for this particular theme was to address Hermes' beginnings as a saddle maker. Who knew? Some of the items that recurred throughout the collection included leather bags, floppy suede hats, tall leather cowboy boots, crocodile-skin jackets and bustiers, and fringed ponchos. If those items don't say "American frontier," I don't know what does. Despite the western wear theme, the collection still managed to faithfully capture the classic Hermes style.

Vintage and thrift store shops are the primary sources of clothing for many young people, particularly those in their 20s or on a college student's budget. With that love of vintage and thrift store clothing has come a renaissance of western apparel, and as many youngsters are discovering an affinity for western wear (cowboy boots, belt buckles, woven dungarees, etc.) from a bygone era, they are bringing the look once again to the fashion forefront.

It's quite possible that rummaging through the racks of clothing at a thrift store no longer appeals to you, particularly if you're not a kid anymore. The look of vintage western apparel, however, you probably still like. So why not check out some of the great classic western wear styles available in shops--both locally and online? The Boot Store, for instance, is a fantastic online resource for quality western apparel--from pearl-snap button shirts to custom cowboy boots. You still get that great vintage look, but in a quality product that's uniquely yours and will survive the test of time.

Written by Melanie River. Brand name cowboy boots and western wear at The Boot Store online store for western apparel. Ariat boots, Justin boots more at

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