Hold onto your hats because the Western is back. On the big screen and the small, America’s original heroes have ridden into town and brought their style with them.
But if you think this means it’s time to rustle up some double denim and a fringed waistcoat, you’d be wrong, partner. It’s much more complicated than that.
To be a proper cowboy these days you’ll need to rock a Stetson, and that takes true grit.
At this year’s Milan fashion week, two cow-poke signatures – the cowboy hat and the neckerchief— were used to liven up everything from shorts to tracksuits. But what’s prompted this resurgence?
Although the Western has been bubbling just below the surface, it’s recently made a return to the mainstream. The evidence? Director Scott Cooper and screenwriter Taylor Sheridan made a series of modern westerns (Out of the Furnace, Hell & High Water, Wind River). Tarantino made two back to back with Django Unchained and The Hateful Eight. The Coen Brothers pulled off a brilliant reimagining of the John Wayne Classic, True Grit, and even the X Men got in on the act. 2017’s Logan is a western through and through. Then there’s The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (also the Coen Brothers), Netflix’s Godless plus Hostiles, Yellowstone and Frontier.
Hollywood has fallen back in love with quiet men who get things done, but the brilliance of their trappings being adopted by the fashion set is that they add levity and frivolity to the idea of unreconstructed masculinity.
A judiciously placed neckerchief drags your denim jacket up a notch the next level. And a cowboy hat worn with a tracksuit, or even better, a three-piece? Prepare to add the word ‘influencer’ to your insta bio.
It’s time to go and get your head measured.