Readers, it didn't dawn on me till I was halfway through the chambray shirt I'm making that it's really a modified cowboy shirt.
In the United States, cowboy (also known as Western or frontier) shirts have been popular for decades, especially in the Southwest. Although not nearly as ubiquitous as blue jeans, cowboy shirts can be worn far from the rodeo without feeling like you're playing dress-up.
Or can they?
Cowboy shirts became popular men's garments in the 1930's, I believe, with the rise of movie cowboys and Western-themed films. During the 1940's, singing cowboys like Roy Rogers and Gene Autry added a layer of gloss (and wholesomeness) to the look. As families had more leisure time in the 1950's, cowboy shirts were the kind of thing a dad might wear to a backyard barbecue. And in the early decades of TV, cowboys and Western themed shows like Wagon Train, Gunsmoke, and Bonanza ruled the airwaves. (This list knocked my socks off.)
|Remember Ty Hardin in Bronco?|
Sewing patterns for men's Western shirts are always in print. Some of the most beautiful date from the late 1930's through the 1950's. They include all kinds of fancy details like fringe, embroidery (embroidery transfer included!), piping, and fancy cuffs. These patterns are easy to find on eBay and Etsy; I own at least five myself!
Feast your eyes, cowboy shirt fans!
They weren't just for men, either.
A few more peeks at my shirt, which is coming together nicely.
Friends, what do you think of cowboy shirts?
Are they best reserved for the rodeo and community theater productions of Oklahoma!?
Do you -- or someone you love -- have a few hanging in the closet?
Western (or cowboy) shirts -- YEA or NAY?