Some years ago, I knew a woman who dressed like a real cowgirl. Her clothes, however, could never have been found in any ordinary western store. Real western clothing is designed with work in mind, as in working horses and cattle and hefting bundles of hay. Everything she wore was strictly high fashion, obviously expensive, and most definitely not the sort of clothing you’d want to wear anywhere near hay or livestock. Where she bought her outfits, I never knew, but what surely there’s a boutique somewhere that specializes in high-fashion women’s western wear.
Books and articles about cowgirls make the point that cowgirls are not ordinary girls by any means. They can handle anything. They take stands. They defend principles they hold dear. Being a cowgirl is an attitude, a state of the heart. A cowgirl lives life by her own rules and stands for truth, justice, and courage.
In my current Crimson contemporary romance, The Counterfeit Cowgirl, Felicity Clayton is a top saleswoman who has opened The Cosmic Cowgirl, a boutique in Nashville that sells high-fashion cowgirl clothing. When she arrives in the Southeast Texas town of Foxe to put her deceased grandmother’s house up for sale, she runs head-on into Aaron Whitaker, a genuine rancher and car-dealership owner who challenges her to display some real cowgirl talents, like riding a horse. Can a fashion-house-fake cowgirl who has a good reason to be scared of horses meet the challenge?
Of course she can, because Felicity is a real cowgirl at heart. She can, and does, handle anything, including ghosts that need busting, a super-protective mother, and Aaron Whitaker.
But I can’t help thinking I’m on the side of that woman in the fancy western-wear. If you want to be a cowgirl, wouldn’t it be a lot easier to find a Cosmic Cowgirl boutique and just wear the clothes?