The American West featured all kinds of individuals under the sun, from pioneers to outlaws to gunslingers to the initial cowboys and legendary women of the great frontier. America keeps the traditional spirit of the old Wild West continuously alive through action-packed rodeo events.
As professional sporting competitions, rodeos have a unique origin, being born out of the work of the cattle ranching industry. Participants demonstrate their cowboy and cowgirl skills in characteristic standardized events, such as bareback riding, steer wrestling, bull riding, and tie-down roping.
Wondering how to blend in yet fashionably stand out amongst rodeo folk? Learn more in our women’s rodeo style guide. If you’re showing up as a spectator, here’s how to dress for a rodeo with essential western-style elements. Let’s lasso up the best looks in town.
Western Fashion Aesthetic: Foundational Style Elements
No look is as timeless and classic to America as Western-inspired fashion. Attributable to this persistent popularity, you can find a wide array of apparel and accessory choices on the market. The ubiquitous elements of rodeo style include cowgirl boots, hats, and jewelry alongside denim bottoms and button-up tops.
However, putting together picture-perfect rodeo outfits is about more than simply throwing on a hat and pair of boots and calling it a day. You want to steer clear of wearing top-to-bottom western wear as well. An overload of head-to-toe western aesthetics can end up looking more like a costume than authentic attire. Follow this approach instead: consider each piece in isolation and then incorporate items one by one into the outfit. The right combination will seamlessly pull together an identifiable original and relaxed look.
Examine Your Current Wardrobe Choices
Next up in our women’s rodeo style guide: how to dress for a rodeo is examining your current wardrobe. You can easily pair quintessential western with some more casual, contemporary items in your closet. While dressing for the rodeo scene isn’t like everyday styling, you can nail the aesthetic with the right cues. Take inspiration from ‘70s western wear vibes to be rodeo-ready in no time.
If you don’t have any western staples at the back of your closet, search thrift stores and cowgirl-themed boutiques for apparel that fits the theme. Odds are, you’ll find the perfect clothing and accessories to help build your attire and arrive in style.
Head-to-Toe Basics: Begin With the Boots
The first item on the styling list for a women’s rodeo outfit is a no-brainer: boots. Cowgirl boots are the most versatile fashion footwear options for a distinctive style, creativity, and authenticity. You’ll find them in varying materials, such as leather, crocodile, lizard, goat, calf, or snakeskin. You’ll need to purchase and break them in beforehand to wear them comfortably during the occasion.
Ladies Rodeo Footwear Tips
When shopping for the best-fitting boot, keep the length, width, and toe style in mind. Traditional cowboy boots feature a quality handmade all-leather construction with narrower toes, heeled ends sloping underneath the foot, and leather uppers that reach over the shins. Valued for their iconic image, your choice of classic brown, black, off-white, or colored boots are year-round staple items for your wardrobe.
If boots aren’t your thing, opt for alternative closed-toe shoes. Some western-themed kicks with cool accents or festive prints may be the next best option.
Accessories First, Clothing Second
Fashion accessories are next on the list of rodeo staples for ladies. Choose accessories that add elements of western style to the mix, such as hats, belts, and of course, jewelry. The styling possibilities are truly endless with different materials and textiles.
Types of Rodeo Bling
In the context of jewelry, layered gold, silver, suede, turquoise, and other colored stones are the way to go for statement necklaces, earrings, bracelets, and belts. This bright bling adds a touch of class and style to any outfit.
Denim Bottoms: Well-Fitting Blue Jeans
When it comes to clothing, the essential rodeo wardrobe centers around denim materials. Made famous by cowboys, ranch hands, miners, and farmers in the 20th century, denim is the preferred fabric choice for any age, gender, or class. After all these years, denim is the most durable, versatile, and sought-after material on the market—especially blue jeans.
No-Frill Styles To Match Your Booted Feet
Denim jeans reign supreme, with several options available for women. Choose from well-fitting shorts, skirts, or a traditional pair of blue jeans that offer timeless comfort and appeal. Rodeo-ready jeans come in varied sizes, shapes, and styles for Americana vibes. All fits and cuts are fair game. Opt for a basic straight-leg, eye-catching bell-bottom, or fun flared pair that nods to classic western style. For a high-fashion edge, consider whether you’d rather tuck the jeans into your knee-high boots or let the denim hang over your choice of footwear.
Traditional and Contemporary Western Shirting
The last piece of the women’s rodeo style puzzle is the top layers of tees, shirts, or jackets. Cowgirl-inspired couture includes button-down shirts, causal tees, patterned, plaid, or gingham tops, fringe dusters, denim jackets, and more. Opt for a lightweight material that is soft and durable, such as cotton, linen, or denim. These classic options can be conventional or playful with thoughtful twists.
Playful and Sleek Top Takes
If you desire to stand out from the crowd, your choice of a top can range from cute patterns with detailed graphics to simple looks with utilitarian details. Flannels and fringed vests are also popular garments amongst rodeo-goers for layering and styling.
All-Aboard Western Brands: Ride Along the Crazy Train
Western influences are found across varying clothing designs, but certain brands focus exclusively on western wear. You can bring your own identity and expression to rodeo styling aesthetics with stand-out pieces from these fashion-forward lineups, such as Crazy Train. These styles redefine the traditional Americana-inspired prints and silhouettes.
As a women’s cowgirl boutique, Western Soul® is your trusted choice for fun rodeo or everyday western styling. We carry a trendy collection of Crazy Train clothing items. All apparel, accessories, and jewelry from this unique western wear line come in limited edition styles with one-of-a-kind boho chic vibes. Shop our online selection of fashionable and functional pieces to add to your wardrobe today. A new fashion frontier awaits!