Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Wild Wild [literal] West

As the first official post for the West Coast side of East//West, I had to be literal. Literal in the sense of west. Whenever I think of the grande wild, wild west I conjure images of rowdy rancheros swindling gold nuggets from a saloon card game, snakeskin boots with fiery spurs, and more modern cowgirls who race painted horses around barrels. 

Now though I am representing my perspective on west coast style, not everyone would agree with me when I say 'cowboy' is a style on the outskirts of Malibu, CA. But it is. Oh it is. When I drive down Topanga Canyon or towards the tunnels on Kanan Road, I can't keep count of how many farms, arenas, barns, or stables I see. I may even spot a train of said cowboys hustling horses across the street. It may shock people when they notice how many cowboy-boot clad natives walking around Southern California. It isn't only a place of 365 days of perpetual sunshine and palm trees. There is definitely an unsung cowpoke ballad attached to the landscape. 

Shooting for this look, I really only had one place to consider: Paramount Ranch in Malibu Canyon. Here, on a scrubby patch of land laced with old fencing, sits a very film-famous Western Town. What better background could I have than a general store and a hitching post? Ironically, the section of land containing all the sets was sectioned off for filming. After trying to pass through groups of men handling reflectors and boom poles, and being asked if I was an extra and where was my paperwork, I was kicked out. So I settled for the Santa Monica Mountains as my backdrop.

Which leads me to my outfit. That's really what this is all about. I had to defend my ensemble before there were any suspicious objections to the validity of the style. Because Isabel Marant ushered in a beautiful western mystique in the F/W 2012 collection, I felt relieved to don a pair of much more attainable Zara ankle boots that mix three different tones of [faux] snakeskin. And what could be more western than a pair of suede chaps with billowing fringe? Nothing. However, since I do not own 60 cows or a roping pony (and thus zero chaps), I settled with a vintage scalloped suede skirt in camel. Also by Zara is an equestrian themed shirt with even more buckaroo panache. I particularly like how the buttons travel down and coincide with the buttons on the skirt below.  

Now the earrings, which I am eternally in love with. Because I was already channeling done-up barrel racer or oil tycoon wifey, I felt it only right to go full-fledged Lureen Newsome and add some gaudy jewelry. I snatched these up from Ezza Exclusive, a San Fernando Valley based jewelry designer, who specializes in statement pieces. No other adornment was necessary for this look, I felt like the raw yellow turquoise and door knocker amethysts did the trick. 

Now yeehaw to the comments!

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