Will cowboy core be the next big fashion trend to rule this summer?

It might be time to add a pair of cowboy boots or that fringe jacket to your wardrobe. 

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From wide-brimmed cowboy hats, studded chunky belts, and fringe jackets to denim shirts, Western-inspired outfits are all set to ride the wave of popularity this season, thanks in part to Beyoncé’s recently released country album Cowboy Carter, whose song 'Texas Hold ‘Em' became an instant global hit. Other celebrities like Bella Hadid, Kim Kardashian, and Emily Ratajkowski have also been spotted embracing the look. On the runway too, brands like Louis Vuitton put their own spin on Western fashion, with the men’s F/W ’24 collection helmed by Pharell Williams being heavily cowboy-coded. 


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While it would be a disservice to call Western-style dressing a ‘trend’ as it is a timeless aesthetic that has existed since the 19th century, it has definitely burst onto the fashion scene this spring-summer, capturing the fancy of a larger audience. And it will not just be confined to the United States, where the look originates—Western gothic was on the list of Pinterest Predicts trends for this year, indicating its reach far and wide. 


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Ahead, discover what exactly ‘cowboy chic’ includes, Western staples that can jazz up your summer closet, and more. 

What is cowboy core?

Cowboy core or cowboy chic refers to the utilitarian and sturdy outfits worn by cattle herders or cowboys during the 19th century. Texas was a stronghold of the cattle industry during the time, and given the vast ranges, difficult terrain, and extreme climate of the region, cowboy fashion was mostly practical with a bit of flair. This was translated onto the small screen with Western movies dialing up the aesthetic with large buckled belts, studded jeans, and more. 

How can I add elements of the cowboy aesthetic to my style?

A cowboy hat or a pair of embellished cowboy boots will be the easiest and most outright way of incorporating Wild West fashion into your attire. Opt for neutral shades so that they can be easily mixed and matched with other pieces in your wardrobe. A black, cream, or chocolate brown hat will add oomph to the simple combo of shirt and jeans, and pairing cowboy boots with your go-to summer dress will juxtapose its femininity with a dash of ruggedness. 

If it’s your first rodeo in Western style and you’d rather go the subtle route, then you can’t go wrong with textural additions. Think leather jackets with fringed shoulders, belts with silver studs, plain denim shirts, denim maxi skirts, or even a delicate prairie dress, which features in cottage core fashion as well and is an antidote to the otherwise masculine cowboy wardrobe. Whatever you choose, the biggest factor in acing the look is plenty of confidence. It ain’t Texas, but you can sure pretend it is this summer. 

Lead image collage: Pexels 

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