How To Wrangle The Western Trend

How To Wrangle The Western Trend

PRODUCTS| 25.11.2021

Whether you know it or not, Western lifestyle and cowboy culture have influenced contemporary fashion as we know it, impacting the way we dress today. Western trends such as heeled boots, leather belts, plaid shirts and cowboy hats are having somewhat of a renaissance at the moment, with the likes of pop stars Lil Nas X and Orville Peck bringing Western back in a big way. Our Sundown collection puts a modern twist on the Western trend - let’s show you how to take the bull by the horns (so to speak) and wrangle the trend.

History of the Western Trend

Our love for the Western trend was born from the prolific era of Western films in the 1930s-1960s, where film stars became people’s idols and everyone wanted to dress like them. Stagecoach (1939) was the landmark Western film that came to define the genre and made lead actor John Wayne a star, featuring in more than 60 Western films throughout his career. 

From that point onwards, Western films were everywhere, most famously The Magnificent Seven (1960), The Good, The Bad and The Ugly (1966) and Oscar-winning movie Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969). As a result of these films, Western trends began to filter into contemporary culture, from motifs to phrases, colours to settings. The use of Monument Valley on the Arizona-Utah border became the single most recognisable location in Western movies.

Can you remember Looney Tunes’ famous Road Runner cartoons? The Road Runner and Coyote would chase each other endlessly against the Monument Valley backdrop - wide-open desert roads that go on for miles, the blazing sun beating down, with nothing but sand, rock, dunes and cactuses in the landscape. These images are synonymous with the Western trend, instantly recognisable cultural touch-points.

Around the same time that Western films became popular, so did country music. Country was born out of the southern states of America in the 1920s, originating from roots in blues, gospel and folk music. By the time of the 1950s, seminal Rockabilly style artists Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash reigned supreme, their sound an upbeat combination of blues and country music. 

The 1960s saw the arrival of Dolly Parton, a mainstream country artist who bridged the gap between pop and country, whose popularity and success is still present to this day. Elvis, Cash and Dolly all became fashion icons in their own right, popularising Western fashion trends as their music gained global acclaim. 

Modern Resurgence

After the popularity of Western films and country music in the 1930s-1970s, they had a slight dip in popularity for the next few decades. But like every trend in history, they always come back around like a trusty boomerang. 

The 1990s saw Western films come back on the scene again. Contemporary films such as No Country for Old Men (2007), True Grit (2010) and Django Unchained (2012) show the continued interest and appetite for the Western trend in modern popular culture. 

The Western trend is having quite a resurgence at the moment - Lil Nas X’s Old Town Road in 2019 made Western cool again, and his fashion choices to this day are bringing Western back in a big way. Lil Nas X has also just covered Dolly Parton’s iconic country tune Jolene, one of the most streamed songs ever - need we say any more? 

Another modern adoption of the Western trend is the popularity of cow print - you only had to take one look at clothing shops, catwalks and festival arenas this summer to notice that cow print was EVERYWHERE. Leather jackets and blazers are also now a staple in most people’s wardrobes. 

Whether you like it or not, the Western trend is everywhere you look and here to stay. Yeehaw indeed!

Western Fashion Trends

When most people think of Western fashion trends they think of typical cowboy outfits - fringed suede jackets worn over jeans, accessorised with cowboy boots, chunky belts, wide-brim hats and bolo ties. But the Western trend is so much more than cowboys! So many modern popular materials, cuts and styles originate from Western fashion trends. 

Just think of all the trouser trends that have stemmed from Western-style - flares, wide-leg fits, leather and denim, to name a few! Aside from the obvious garments and accessories associated with the trend, Western fashion is also defined by its distinctive details. 

From fringed pockets and studded adornments to more subtle features such as large pointed collars and embroidered hems, it’s the small elements that make a big impact. Think denim shirts with large statement collars and fringed suede jackets, leather jackets with studded hemlines and flared trousers with embroidered back pockets. It’s all about everyday garments with little twists.

Navajo prints are another popular Western fashion trend still popular to this day, featuring tribal patterns, geometric shapes, fringing and sunset hues. You can find Aztec style prints in most modern clothes shops nowadays, commonly featured on fleeces and jackets, as well as accessories like socks, caps and bags. Even homeware and interior trends nowadays are heavily influenced by Navajo culture!

Dickies Interpretation of the Western Trend

With the authentic feel you’d expect from Dickies, the Sundown capsule collection brings Western-inspired detailing to both men’s and women’s silhouettes, with true Western Americana influences. 

As a brand founded in Fort Worth Texas in the early 1920s (just when country music and Western films were gaining popularity), Dickies originally made denim bib overalls to farm and ranch workers in the Southwest of the US, an ideal setting for Western influences. This collection elevates all of our iconic styles while staying true to our Western roots. 

Our Sundown collection puts a fun, modern twist on Western fashion trends, using recognisable Western motifs and prints; for example, instead of a traditional cowboy hat, we have the retro style Bettles Bucket Hat in pumpkin spice and black colourways. Our alternative to a fringed suede jacket is the Bettles Jacket, an Eisenhower style jacket featuring cactus, sunset and snake prints on the back, as well as the ‘Working ‘til Sundown’ jersey graphics. 

The colour palette of the whole collection centres around cream, khaki, burnt orange, gold and black shades. Predominantly black garments, such as the Bettles Work Pant, have a wide-leg fit and are highlighted with gold accents - gold piping along the hemlines or Western-inspired sunset imagery. 

Graphics are the star of the show, most obviously seen in the Bettles AOP Long Sleeve Shirt, which features all-over Western-style graphics in all of the key colours.  

How to Style the Western Trend

When it comes to styling the Western trend, it doesn’t have to send you wild, wild west. It can be as subtle or as overt as you like! The easiest way to style the trend is with accessories - a chunky leather belt with a Western-style metal buckle can level up any outfit, and if you’re feeling bolder then don a cowboy hat or cowboy boot over the top of a prairie dress for the ultimate modern interpretation of the Western trend. 

If you’re into matching sets and full head-to-toe looks, then go for some matching cow-print top and bottom pieces, fringed leather jackets with wide-leg leather trousers. Flared jeans over boots is a simple way to style the trend, perhaps with a denim or leather shirt on top with fringing details for extra oomph. 

Any kind of suede or leather jacket will add a splash of Western-style to even the plainest of outfits - go for rusty browns, burnt oranges and faded blacks.

Key Products

So if cowboy boots and lassos aren’t quite your thing - we got you. Giddy up and rattle your head around these key products from the Sundown collection:

Bettles AOP Long Sleeve Shirt - Stand out in our Western-inspired Bettles AOP Long Sleeve Shirt. In our all-over desert print, this long sleeve shirt updates our classic Dickies work shirt.

Bettles Jacket - The Bettles Jacket is a men's zippered jacket topped with Western-inspired details. This everyday jacket features our 'workin' til sundown' graphic and iconic Dickies script print. A classic Dickies staple designed for work and play.

Bettles Work Pant - The Bettles Work Pant is an authentic work pant with a Western-inspired edge. These straight leg trousers feature a stand-out piping seam detail down the leg. A heritage Dickies piece made for everyday comfort.

Bettles Bucket Hat - Take cover from the sun with the unisex Bettles Bucket Hat. This retro-style bucket hat features a drawcord adjuster and our iconic Dickies script on the front.


Fashion should always be about having fun, being playful with your style and trying out different trends and outfits to see what you feel most comfortable in. The Western trend may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but we think our Sundown collection has something for everyone. 

Whether you’re after a head-to-toe showstopping look or just a nod to the trend with a subtle accessory, head to Dickies for all your sartorial Western needs.

Check out the whole Sundown collection here.


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