For the past few months, I’ve been obsessed with the “Wild West”. It all started when I decided to re-read one of my favorite books, Lonesome Dove, mentioned in this reading favorites post. Every time I finish the book, I am left in awe of how amazing the men and women (American, Native American, and Mexican) were that lived through these times. The wide open country, the battles that were fought, the hard living as people were literally building their houses by hand, and more.
When I’m obsessed with something, I usually end up reading and watching everything I can on the subject – I am even on my library waiting list for “Walker, Texas Ranger,” which apparently has a higher demand than I thought. Due to my enthusiasm this post ended up being a little longer so I’ve separated it into three sections – book recommendations, style and jewelry.
I went through at least ten books that were “Western” themed (I have to admit, there were some bad ones), and these are the ones I would recommend. Lonesome Dove also has a great TV miniseries based on it, and True Grit and No Country for Old Men have fantastic movies as well.
The Sisters Brothers – about two brothers – hired assassins – who travel to California to track down a man they’ve been hired to kill.
No Country for Old Men – this is not a classic Western as it’s already set in the 1980s, but I included it because in my opinion it’s in the same genre – the descriptions of open country and Texas and again here a struggle between life and death. Also made into a movie, here.
After reading all of these books I felt very inspired, and went through a bunch of fashion archives looking for “Western” styles. Here are two of my favorite collections that referenced the Western spirit. The first is Ralph Lauren Spring 2011:
Ralph really does create some beautiful dresses. I’d love to have both of these. To me he is the king of Western influenced fashion and you can clearly see that influence in his son’s wedding photos with Lauren Bush (at Ralph’s Colorado ranch):
I was thrilled to find another collection heavily influenced by the West, from one of my favorite brands – Hermes! This was from Gaultier’s Spring 2009 collection and the two below were my favorite looks.
And let’s not forget the amazing accessories – I think this was the collection where Hermes introduced its ombre lizard products – one of my favorite ever!
Ever since Belle’s interview I’ve been really rethinking my jewelry collection. I would like to build a collection of statement pieces and have always admired Western inspired pieces. I love how many of them are inspired by nature and use a lot of one of my favorite stones – turquoise! Below is my only turquoise item – a little bracelet my dad brought me back when he went to Brazil, I’m pretty sure it costs $10 or less (my father’s threshold for souvenir spending).
And two of my dream inspiration turquoise pieces below. The first is the Cartier necklace designed for the Duchess of Windsor (dream on, right)?
The second is the Van Cleef Alhambra necklace in turquoise. I’ve wanted this necklace since 2009 and even back then the price was out of reach. Too bad it’s only gone up ~40-50% since then!
Whew! That was a long post. If you’ve made it this far – thank you for reading – and I would love, love to hear your thoughts on the Wild West. Books, movies, TV, fashion, jewelry, anything. What are your thoughts on this era, and any recommendations on things to read, look at, buy, know? Please leave your comments below!