Roaming free on the prairie with nothing but his horse and saddle, the idea of the American cowboy has long fascinated us. These tough, weathered men embodied the frontier spirit, and there's something romantic about the way they'd wander into dusty towns, save beautiful women, and vanquish the bad guys. Enamored with cowboy culture, Hollywood has churned out westerns since the 1920s, including classics like Stagecoach (John Wayne's breakthrough role) and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford). Naturally, cowboys and all their trademark accoutrements--like Stetson hats, bandannas, and buckskin vests--have had a huge influence on the fashion world too. It's been over a decade since Dolce & Gabbana's F/W 01 collection, full of suede jackets, leather pants, and lots of fringe, and the style has reappeared numerous times since then. We're happy to report that thanks to this season's prevalent Western wear, it's certainly not time to hang up your spurs. This season, we're inspired by spaghetti westerns, a European (mostly Italian, hence the carb-loading reference) subgenre of the classic American films. Interested in the westward expansion of your wardrobe? Read on for today's Currently Channeling story!The Cinematic Inspiration
Though hundreds of spaghetti westerns were produced during their '60s and '70s heyday, chances are you're most familiar with the Dollars Trilogy. Directed by the genre's godfather Sergio Leone, the movies propelled Clint Eastwood--who played the lonesome, ever-mysterious leading man--to stardom.
The Sartorial Story
We're inclined to think that several designers screened a Leone flick or two before working on their fall collections, interpreting the cowboy look in a truly sophisticated way. Hermes' Christophe Lemaire paired a leather jacket with gaucho pants, a smart fedora, and boots for the rugged frontier girl, while Isabel Marant's urban adventurer wore a yoked Top ($820, 212.219.2284), embellished Pants ($2170, 212.219.2284), and Shoes ($990, 212.219.2284) with silver toe tips. Inspired by these runway looks, we wrangled a few stylish items that exude cowgirl haute couture!
Get The Look
Ksubi Studded Denim Jacket ($510)
While Ksubi's denim jacket has been faded and distressed to the perfect degree, it's the rows of silver bar studs that transform the topper into cowgirl-worthy wear. To channel a modern take on the Wild West, pair it with faded jeans for a denim-on-denim ensemble.
ASOS Leather Suede Insert Satchel ($75)
The suede panels on this leather bag are unmistakably Western-inspired, but in case you don't want a full-on cowgirl look, they're also quite subtle. Whether you're about to ride off into the sunset or just want to accessorize an off-duty outfit, ASOS' sturdy satchel is a must-have!
Topshop Arson Flame Western Boots ($200)
These Topshop kicks have a little more flair than your average cowboy boots. Crafted in black leather with a glossy burgundy design, they've also got a metal toe and heel cap. Contrast their grittiness with something feminine, like a floaty dress or skirt.
Wendy Nichol Shadow Land Hat ($650, 212.431.4171) in Black
Hats, such as this ultra-luxe version from Wendy Nichol, can be an iconic part of the spaghetti western hero's persona. If you'd prefer a more wallet-friendly alternative, try Catarzi Exclusive For ASOS' Brim Fedora Hat ($16). As for that dusty, worn-in feel that comes with embarking on a Wild West adventure? You're on your own!
Pixie Market Ornate Western Belt ($42)
A tooled metal belt is perfect when you need to cinch in a poncho, or even just a slouchy t-shirt, at the waist. We suggest Pixie Market's flashy, oversized version with its two intricate gold buckles.
BDG Cigarette High-Rise Embroidered Jeans ($78)
Take sleek black denim, add some Southwestern embroidery, and you have BDG's flattering cigarette jeans! Tuck in a worn-in chambray shirt for a polished Western feel.
Wren Suede Fringe Shorts ($348) in Camel
Fresh from the rodeo, Wren's suede fringe shorts are over the top in the best way possible. Keep the rest of your look simple with a crisp white blouse and sleek pumps.
Benefit Dallas Face Powder ($28)
Cowboys and ranch hands spend most of their days in the sun. We found a way you can fake their healthy outdoors glow! Simply dust Benefit's powder across key areas, like your cheeks, forehead, and chin, for natural-looking radiance.
The 2 Bandits Bow Tie Choker ($158) in Antique Silver with Blue Enamel
We'd like to consider this an appropriation of the classic bolo tie. Slip the choker on over the collar of a buttoned-up shirt for a fashionable frontier-girl outfit.
Levi's Made & Crafted Embroidered Sawtooth Western Shirt ($198, 310.395.5699)
Western kitsch--such as embroidered birds and blue snap closures--becomes cool thanks to this Levi's Made & Crafted blouse. Dress it up by tucking it into a mid-shin pencil skirt.--Tiffany Tse
Hermes runway photo, courtesy of Hermes; Isabel Marant runway photo, courtesy of Isabel Marant