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Saddle-Up Style: Has Cowboy Fashion Hit the Streets?

Saddle-Up Style: Has Cowboy Fashion Hit the Streets?

Cowboy fashion is one of those styles that will never go away. Due to the way it’s embedded in Western culture, there will always be revivals and pieces of Western wear that are infused into modern culture. Whether it’s a new take on denim-on-denim, new floral or paisley patterns on prairie dresses, the infamous cowboy boot, or the classic appeal of a fringed, Western-style jacket – the unique style of the 19th century Wild West is here to stay. Because of the popularity of Western movies in the 1900s, the style has been established as an American classic.

Let’s have a look at a few of the most popular cowboy fashion styles.


Known as one of the most apparent staples of cowboy fashion, the infamous denim-on-denim has become a streetwear staple in recent years. The variations that exist within denim-on-denim can consist of different shades of denim, sometimes adding denim shirts underneath denim jackets, using light wash and dark wash, or light-wash head to toe. Created by Levi Strauss for manual labourers in the West of the United States in the late 1800s, one of the most iconic pieces of denim-on-denim fashion is the denim jacket. But, the denim-on-denim style is no longer just for manual labourers – supermodels like Emrata and Gigi Hadid have added denim-on-denim to their everyday wardrobes. If you’re new to denim-on-denim, try and use two different washes, a light wash on top and a dark wash on the bottom. Don’t worry about adding the denim button-up until you’re ready.

‘Western Jackets’

Jackets are essential to bringing a look together, and it’s the same for cowboy fashion. Especially with the flamboyance of fringe and the rustic appeal of dark brown suede, ‘Western Jackets’ are staples in the Wild West fashion. One of the most apparent features of this style is the ‘wear and tear’ that can be seen on the jacket. If suede or leather, the essence of the Western style is captured in the distressed material, linking back to the idea of Western fashion being made for the working class. Whether these jackets are made from leather, suede, or snakeskin, with or without fringe, or cropped, ‘Western Jackets’ is a customizable type of Western fashion. If fringe on a jacket makes you nervous, go for a dark brown suede or leather jacket. But to really embody cowboy fashion, fringe is a must.

The Cowboy Boot

The cowboy boot is a cultural relic of the USA. Originally crafted to help cowboys stay in place in their stirrups, the cowboy boot was an item of clothing that was born out of necessity. Now, the cowboy boot is offered in different ‘exotic’ skins – alligator, snake, boar, elk, and more. Known for its boxed-off pointed-toe, stitching and heels, the cowboy boot is easily distinguishable from any other boot. Often, the boot comes up to the midcalf. The cowboy boot is incredibly versatile. They’re meant to be comfortable, hence why they regularly appear at Coachella and other festivals, and they look cute. You can style the cowboy boot with a pair of boot-cut or flare jeans, a cute mini skirt or summer dress, a prairie dress, with a denim jacket… the options are endless. 

A Praire Dress

One of the most distinct pieces of cowboy fashion is the long, flowing dress. Often categorised by the pattern, whether it be paisley or floral, a prairie dress is a staple in the cottage-core aesthetic. Characterised by ‘voluminous sleeves’ and ‘a billowing body’ (Vogue), the prairie dress is iconic in both the cottage-core aesthetic and cowboy fashion. Originally sewn for women living in the prairies (obviously), it’s a delicate dress, breathable for the sun-stricken days, allowing movement when the winds would pick up on the dry afternoons. It’s perfect for hot days and cooler nights. Try pairing it with a denim jacket and some sandals on a sunset date night, or pair it with a popular but classic pair of sunglasses and a hat on a sunny day.

For everyday fashion, the key is doing what you feel comfortable with. If you want to embrace cowboy fashion head-on, just do it! Wear a linen or cotton prairie dress, a pair of neutral cowboy boots, or a similar coloured ‘Western jacket’, or pair it with a big Wild West-style belt. Stick to similar shades of accessories, it keeps the outfit cohesive. If you’re feeling a bit nervous by the idea of looking like you stepped out of a Western film, simply add cowboy boots to a cute, summer dress, or rock it with a classic denim jacket on a night out. The possibilities with cowboy fashion are endless. 

SEE ALSO: Has Emily in Paris Inspired a New Era of Parisian Fashion?

“Real Fur is Dead” Jordan Laub Vegan Fur Designer and Creator of @VELUFUR

Real Fur was cool when it was necessary. When taming nature meant something—a life or death expedition into the tundra for a battle with nature’s Apex predators, but in the age of fur farms and our ever-expanding human footprint, it’s not just unnecessary—it’s outdated. It’s the overpriced participation trophy of the fashion world.

“Don’t get me wrong,” says Jordan Laub, creator of @VELUFUR, a line of ridiculously awesome vegan fur jackets that are popping up at festivals everywhere. “I love a thrift shop score as much as the next, but we are not talking about Macklemore here. Reduce, re-use, recycle is still a go, it’s the continued industrialization of real fur that gives it a bad a rap.”

Our oceans are polluted. A nature hike is relegated to a paved road through Torrey Pines and millennials are determined to do something about it. On June 11th, 2019 Kim Kardashian made headlines with a post on Instagram that “[she] took all [her] fave furs and remade them in faux fur.” (Kardashian. 2019). Maybe it’s because conservation is the hot new trend, or maybe it’s because K-dash grew tired of having flour thrown on her. Who knows, maybe she genuinely cares about making a positive impact, but one thing’s for certain, real fur is out and faux fur is in, but why now?

“Faux fur is taking over because it’s the animal-friendly alternative to a form of clothing that has been the wardrobe choice of humans since forever. I’m sure a wooly mammoth fur coat looked awesome, but there’s a reason woolly mammoths went extinct,” says Laub.

So fake fur that looks like real fur, all the fun without the guilt, we get it, but what’s up with the neon colored Monster’s inc festival fur explosion?  Why is faux fur the go-to for party animals everywhere?

“The 70’s are back baby” —Jordan Laub

“That’s why we named our jacket the Mac Daddy, gave our fur names like GROOVELU, and designed our bandana packaging with this retro flower power look. Bright colored pimp coat furs, bell bottoms, platform boots, heart shaped glasses, and low brimmed hats that LA pilgrims everywhere seem to love. The cocaine and MDMA craze, it’s all coming back. It’s almost impossible to imagine Coachella without the Brady Bunch spinoffs rocking a pair of high waisted shorts with sunflower bands.”

I guess our grandparents don’t know how cool they really are–if only they still dressed the way they used to. Fashion is cyclical, retro hand-me-downs from the attic are inherited, and as much as our parents would like to pretend it’s not true, so is the lifestyle. The disco era defined itself in the fashion world as the era of the party, so if disco house is your rhythm, and moon rocks are your jam, strap yourself into some platform moon boots and bright colored pimp fur, and sing it with me now (along everyone else who can’t get Will.i.am’s stupid rap song out of their head): “I got it from my momma.”

Or maybe, ‘I got it from my older sister?’

EDM has hit the mainstream. It’s almost impossible to escape it, from rap, to country, almost every genre has morphed to include repetitive bass lines with minimal lyrics and easy-to-remember one-line choruses. 70s disco may have defined the dress code of the party, but the warehouse rave era of the 90s and 2000s made bright colored faux fur more than just fashion statement, it made faux fur a lifestyle.

As the disco era retired its Studio51 dancing boots, the era old enough to remember Sandstorm stole the style and gave it its familiar twist. Growing older means growing tired of hating sunrises and living with hangovers. When the spice girls broke up, everyone else was too busy playing with their tomagachis to care, and the bleached hair generation hung up its tacky arcade fur hats with its techno-goth duster coats, never to be seen again. That is until their little siblings heard Avicii’s “Levels” for the first time. A new faux fur generation was born–ready to follow in their older siblings’ footsteps and pick up right where the last generation left off.

As long as there is a party to go to, faux fur will ride its coat tails—literally

“Fur is soft, and warm–it feels good, but only when you don’t have to kill for it. Real fur is dead, but faux fur is here to take its rightful place as the iconic symbol of party fashionistas everywhere.”

Oh yeah, and don’t forget about @VELUFUR when you’re ready for your next jacket.