NFR Fashion

Wednesday, October 14, 2015 - 12:00pm
by Channing Boone

The Superbowl of rodeo is quickly approaching and RIDE TV is very excited to be in Vegas for the 2015 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo! The WNFR attracts fans from all over the world to cheer on professional rodeo cowboys and cowgirls as they compete for a world championship title in different rodeo events. Not only is the WNFR a showcasing of the best talent in the rodeo business, but also a place where the most unique and latest western fashion can be found.

PRCA photo by Greg Westfall. Photos courtesy of PRCA

Each woman in attendance represents her own eclectic style and how she wants to portray her idea of cowgirl-chic. I caught up with three of the most unique and trend-setting women in the western world to bring y’all a few WNFR fashion pointers. Katy Jade Hall, Adrian Brannan and Rachel Beeler have all competed in rodeo and continue to stay true to their western roots through their exquisite style. These ladies have shared packing secrets, must-have accessories and how- to’s on creating your style to stand out in Vegas. So open up the wardrobe and dive in to start finding the perfect western-inspired outfits for the 2015 WNFR!

Q&A with Katy Jade Hall

Katy Jade Hall is the gorgeous owner, graphic designer and creative mind behind Wonder Years Co; an online boutique and blog providing original designs in the form of graphic tee’s and tanks. She has attended the WNFR almost every year since she was 13 and is now dating bareback rider and four-time WNFR qualifier Tilden Hooper. Katy’s style reflects her love of art and ability to create an original design!

Photo courtesy of Janzen Jackson Photography.

My fashion style is a little different than normal. It’s a vintage-hipster cowgirl look. I love vintage fashion of two different styles. I love the old hipster look…bell bottoms, crochet and sunglasses! I also love the vintage cowgirl/cowboy look, old belts, boots and hats! I kinda mix the two and make it my own.

What are some ways you keep your style unique?

I don’t like to follow trending fashion. I try to stick to clothes that make me feel like myself instead of worrying about what others are wearing. I think that too many people follow what other people are wearing and lose their own personal touch. There is nothing wrong with being “in-style,” you just have to find ways to show your personality through it. I am an artist so I keep my style funky because it just shows who I am.

How far in advance do you begin planning outfits and shopping for the WNFR?

I am terrible at planning outfits ahead of time, so I usually wait until the last minute if I do pre-shop. I try not to shop a lot before the WNFR because I do so much shopping while I am there.

Photo courtesy of Janzen Jackson Photography.

What are some essentials you take and recommend every gal should have in her bag?

  • Emergen-C – Vegas is so dirty and since there are so many germs it’s hard not to get sick; so I fuel up on this stuff and I recommend starting before you go.

  • A Big Shopping Bag- If you plan on going to Cowboy Christmas this is so much easier than carrying a million bags and plus you can save plastic by putting the items straight into that bag.

  • A portable phone charger – You do not want to get stuck in Vegas, lost and by yourself, without a phone!

  • A back up ID – Vegas can get crazy! Need I say more? I love to figure out the best way to pack so I have a few… These are my packing secrets just for Vegas…

Can you share some of your best packing secrets with us?

I pack in a trunk, you know that kind you take to camp. They are perfect for long term trips. Nothing gets smashed, broken or spilled. Vegas isn’t just right beside Texas either, so I like that I can lock it up and put it in the bed of the truck. A lot of the trunks have trays that sit on top of the main compartment, which is perfect for jewelry and knick-knacks. When I get to Vegas I can keep my clothes separated by draping them over the sides and that way they are folded up and not getting wrinkly. If you don’t have a trunk, you can get plastic containers at Walmart. If you are going the whole time I recommend bringing a dirty laundry bag or trash bag so that your dirty clothes aren’t just piled up.

  • Roll your clothes, I swear it works better. I just don’t roll my jeans.

  • Wrap your important necklaces in super thick clothing and stick them in your boot tops. Make sure you pack those boots where they aren’t getting banged around. I have broken a lot of great jewelry because of not packing it securely. Or you can put your curling irons and straightener in your boot tops so that you’re utilizing space.

  • Dresses and Skirts I fold in half and lay flat on the bottom of the trunk.

  • Get a can of some wrinkle release at CVS or wherever… that stuff should be in every travel woman’s bag, it works!

  • For all the other jewelry you can use Press and Seal and wrap the necklaces and earrings up securely. 

What are the staple pieces in your wardrobe that will be making the trip to Vegas, too?

I never leave home without a hat and I have one for every occasion. I will probably have my whole collection of Warbonnet Hatworks hats with me for sure! I also love my Wild Rags so I will bring my collection of those as well. They are a great statement piece for all kinds of outfits. The last staple piece I will bring is this beautiful Turquoise necklace I bought from a dear friend of mine. It is an Old Pawn piece and is made of gorgeous, perfect Turquoise! It is super heavy but worth the neck pain.

Is there a way you incorporate support for Tilden into your outfits?

I am a graphic designer and work in apparel, so I usually make a shirt or some sort of clothing to wear one night. Last year I made a backless maxi dress with his back number on the front and an American baseball tee with his back number on it. I also have Nick Cunningham at Bad Bronc Studio in Fort Worth, Texas make me a pendant every year. He is the best and makes it one of a kind for you.

Photo courtesy of Janzen Jackson Photography.

Let’s talk shoes…How do you choose which ones to take with you?

Shoes! Ohhhhh my Lawd. I over pack shoes like nobody’s business. So I don’t know how to help anyone out with this problem but I’ll give it a go. I don’t wear heels every night, I try to spread it out. My feet were not made for those things. However, pick your one favorite pair of black and brown heels/wedges, one or two pairs of staple heels, and let the rest stay behind. I am a bootie lover, so I pack them all. I also make sure to pack two pairs of comfortable shoes that I can dress up (vans or flats). Last, but not least, I bring three or four pairs of boots, whether they are cowboy boots or the flat tall stylish kind. 

The nightly performances are a gals chance to really get glammed up and express her individual sense of style! How do you decide what to wear those nights?

I always make sure I know what nights are theme nights so I can support it. There is Pink Night and American Night etc. and you want to make sure and be a part of that! Other nights when I am getting ready, I pick a piece of clothing that I know I want to wear that night and build around it. Find your staple piece first and then make the outfit around that. Sometimes it is not that easy and takes a little bit of time. So make sure you are getting back to the hotel from day time activities in time to throw yourself together! And do not forget your ticket on the way out the door! (whoooooops)

Photo courtesy of Janzen Jackson Photography.

What are some ways you dress to keep warm, but are able to still show your style?

I LOVE to layer! I think layering is super important! Especially in Vegas because its so cold outside at night there, but not cold in the casinos and hotels. Most hotels have bell desk and you can check your jackets and other layers there. A few layer items that I love are vests, wild rags, scarves, and a lot of times I will layer jackets. I’ll put a small statement jacket peeking out under a bigger jacket that I can check and then I’m ready for whatever.

How do you dress during the day? Is your style casual or still Vegas glam?

CASUAL! I love comfort so I dress it down in the days but I still make it look like I put some sort of effort into it by adding statement jewelry or a good hat. You will never see me in heels during the day unless it is a tennis shoe or some sort of wedge.

Photo courtesy of Janzen Jackson Photography.

Q&A with Adrian Brannan 

Adrian is a singer-songwriter and blogger from California. Most know this beautiful bombshell as the Buckaroo Girl from her previous days of competing in ranch bronc riding. This is Adrian’s first year attending the WNFR, but this girl has many miles under the soles of her boots from rodeo travels and concerts she has preformed at. Her style is nothing short of cowboy meets Barbie!

Photo courtesy of Adrian Brannan.

I think a lot of what makes my style unique is that I come from a very traditional background of cowboys who dressed like, well…COWBOYS! When I started really experimenting with fashion and going outside the boundaries of what people expected, I was 14 and was just starting my music career. I knew I liked being different, but I really always like having at least one piece or element in my outfit that is semi-traditional, or reminiscent of the buckaroo’s style.

How would you describe your style?

CRAZY. Cowboy. Cavalli. Sometimes traditional (think flat hat, under slung Paul Bonds and a wild rag) I always have to have a lot of leopard print, some tall boots or heels, and a flashy belt. Those are my “bare essentials”!

Photo courtesy of Adrian Brannan.

What staple pieces will you be packing along to the WNFR?

I swear by a comfortable pair of boots. I LOVE Corrals, they have so many great styles and are super comfortable. Another staple piece for me is a flashy belt. I will sometimes wear a little black dress and heels out, but I always throw on a big flashy belt like one of Quincy Freeman’s designs, or aRanch Royalty Concho belt. Also, two words…Squash. Blossom.

What about these pieces make your outfits feel complete?

Boots make me feel really confident, I love rocking heels…but I feel like if I need to do something horseback in a split second, or help someone with something…I would be more efficient in my boots! My belts always just make me feel like the outfit has that “finishing touch” to it, and is complete. It’s usually one of the last things I put on. As for my squash blossom, honestly I always feel like I am wearing a piece of history! And I love the craftsmanship and time that goes into building a single piece.

Photo courtesy of Adrian Brannan.

What are five essentials you will be taking to the WNFR that you think every girl should have in her suitcase?

Since this is my first time (EEK! I AM FREAKING OUT!) I am going pretty prepared, but because I travel a lot anyway for my music career, I have a pretty good idea on what I’ll need.

  • Sewing kit. You never know what is going to happen. Seriously.

  • Pocketknife. Because every girl needs one.

  • Lipstick and powder for touchups.

  • Business cards or some kind of media sharing hand-out…this is essential no matter where you are!

  • A small brush, toothbrush and moisturizer. I always keep a little bag with these in case I end up staying out late or staying with friends

  • A nice fur coat.

What will you be incorporating into your night performance outfits?

I have always thought, and still believe that confidence is literally the most important part of an outfit. I like to try on my outfit, see if I feel comfortable, how I am able to move around – and if I would be confident meeting someone who intimidates me in that outfit…if I do, it’s a go!

Photo courtesy of Adrian Brannan.

Since it does get pretty cold in Vegas during the WNFR, how are you going to layer accordingly?

I am all about vests, long cardigans and ponchos. One of my favorites is a button up, and a fur vest over that. Something plaid, or something sequins always works!

Staying in Vegas for over two weeks can take a toll on a gals body! What are some tips you have on staying healthy during that time?

 I plan on being there the whole time this year! I am so excited and can’t wait to experience the WNFR. After a really bad horse accident, and subsequently not being able to work out – I have turned to Yoga and Love it! I will try and do at least 30-45 minutes in the morning, and drink a lot of water. It is hard to eat healthy on the road, but if you are prepared with healthy snacks and stay hydrated, I think it’s easier!

Photo courtesy of Adrian Brannan.

Q&A with Rachel McGinn

Rachel is a stunning gal from west Texas who just so happens to be “a horse hugging, cow loving, gypsy traveling, rancher’s/musician’s wife, that likes to smile a lot.” She also tools leather and is a style blogger for the Turquoise Teepee. But Rachel is so much more than “those little descriptions…I’m just me,” Rachel says.

Photo courtesy of Rachel McGinn.

My fashion style is a mix of everything; I wouldn’t want to narrow myself down to one thing or category. My style is highly influenced by people such as Dorris Day, John Wayne, Ralph Lauren, to Blake Lively and as far as Janis Joplin. I’m a mix of class, with a touch of vintage goodness. 

What makes your style unique?

My style is unique in the fact that I tend to make a lot of my own stuff. Not as far as picking out material and sewing it together (yet), but in finding pieces that I like and altering them to be more unique and fit my style, from painting it, adding conchos or rivets to it, to finding a vintage tablecloth that I like and stitching it to the back of a denim jacket. I look high and low in antique shops, etsy, yard sales, etc. for one of a kind pieces, or contact new makers for their one of a kind items. 

Photo courtesy of Rachel McGinn, Turquoise Teepee.

What are some staple pieces you will be taking to the WNFR?

Gosh, I found this black, leather, fringe dress that is going to be a staple piece! It’s gorgeous and has all three of my favorite things in it, black, fringe, and leather! A couple staple pieces I couldn’t be without this WNFR or any other rodeo, would be a couple of my custom leather clutches, my squash blossoms, my green Lucchesse boots, my shorty felt Catalena hat and lipstick, of course! Ha!

What about these pieces make your outfits feel complete?

My clutches and squash blossoms are always the finishing pieces to my outfits. No matter what I have on, whether it be a t-shirt and jeans, or a beautiful skirt, they always seem to take it to the next level and dress it up to the nines. Then I add my lipstick and I feel like I’m ready to take on whatever the day throws at me. 

Photo courtesy of Rachel McGinn.

How do you narrow down which shoes to take with you that can match multiple outfits?

Well, I work for a cowboy boot company, so four to five pairs of boots always accompany me to the WNFR. Definitely a pair of tennis shoes or comfy shoes for after long days when my feet are exhausted! And of course, some classy high heels or wedges, depending on the outfit. Some staple shoes I take are a pair of brown leather GB wedges. They are so comfy and leather goes with everything! Last, but not least, I have a pair of red boots that I just love! They’re comfort to my feet and look good with just about anything. 

Photo courtesy of Rachel McGinn.

What is your favorite outfit you have ever worn to a buckle/awards presentation?

Ooooh, this beautiful black lace dress with a pair of leather wedges that have metal studs on the side. It was a handful of years back, but I always remember feeling extra pretty that night. 

What are some of your favorite sights/things to visit while in Vegas?

Besides the finals and obviously all the amazing shopping, I like to go to a show. Brooks and Dunn are playing a reunion at this year’s WNFR and there’s no way I’m missing that! Take a night and go bowling, go ride the ‘eye’ and see all of Vegas. 

Photo courtesy of Rachel McGinn.

“Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.” -Coco Chanel  

We cannot wait to see all of the beautiful people and amazing western fashion at this years WNFR! Stop by and visit RIDE TV during the finals at the Southpoint and Convention Center. Don’t forget…take what makes you unique and wear it proudly!