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Cowboy boots displayed on shelves
Cowboy boots displayed on shelves
Photo by Ana Applewhite
Style > Fashion

These Boots Were Made for Walkin’

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at TAMU chapter.

I never thought I’d look forward to wearing cowboy boots. Never imagined I’d want Saturday to come along just to wear my boots in Kyle Field and stomp my feet as Power by Kanye West played and the Aggie Football team ran out into the field. But here I am, now in obsessed with the look and feel of the classic cowboy boot. What was once in my mind just a part of Southern traditions has now become a form of expression across generations and variations of the cowboy culture. From the typical everyday-wear work boot to fancy, bedazzled bride boots, this type of footwear has become a true embodiment of what it like to live in Southeast USA. As I think about it, my opinion on cowboy boots falls into three key moments of my life: before I got mine, when I knew I wanted a pair, and the first time I wore them.

Howdy? No thanks

The first time I can remember seeing a pair of boots was in Hannah Montana as a little kid. Sure, I thought they were pretty and all, but I saw them as the most Yee-Hawin’, Honky-Tonkin’ Southern thing in the world. My Dad had this dream that I’d embrace my Texan roots, fall in love with a pair of white cowboy boots, and learn how to line dance in the Fort Worth Stockyards. For years, I told him to keep dreaming because that would never happen. I never had anything against this fashion staple or the cowboy culture, I just felt alienated from it. I’d never been in such close contact with a community of boot-wearers like the Aggies, so I didn’t ever think it was something I could like. I think that my lack of exposure to this movement that has been around for ages really influenced my opinion of it, which had me convinced that never in my life would I be wearing cowboy boots and saying “Howdy!” every other day. That all changed when I started my journey as a Texas A&M Aggie.

i want a pair

That first time I walked up to Kyle Field surrounded by cowboy boots, I felt like I was in another planet. Never in my life had I seen so many boots in the same place. I knew I was attending one of the most yee-haw schools in Texas, but I didn’t think it was so intense. I was overwhelmed at first, but once I saw how wearing boots made you a part of a community, I knew I wanted to get a pair. Seeing girls compliment each other’s boots in the stadium restrooms and hearing the click-clack of the heels in the stands made me desperate to be part of the cowboy-boot movement. I even practiced the Hoedown Throwdown and learned how to line dance (just the basics) so I could show off my soon-to-be-acquired boots in the best way possible. How the tables have turned!

Honkin’ & Tonkin’

I walked into cowboy-boot heaven with my Dad (I think he was even more excited than I was) and not even 5 minutes into browsing the store, I found my dream pair. Tall, dark brown boots with a light maroon stitching, very Aggie-like. After doing every modification in the book, they finally fit like a glove, and I walked out feeling like I had “Texas, the Lone Star State” written all over me. But I was happier than ever and couldn’t wait for football season to start so I could show off my new kicks.

To my surprise, I ended up wearing my boots for the first time in the Country Music Capital: Nashville, Tennessee. Now THAT was Southern fashion to the maximum. I fell in love with the sound of live country music playing in every corner, people wearing boots and hats everywhere, and the infinite amounts of boot shops that I walked into. The feeling of line dancing in my boots with my best friends to live music in the middle of Honky Tonk Central made me understand what cowboy boots truly represent. It was during that trip that I realized that I didn’t have to alienate myself from the southern culture just because I hadn’t been a part of it before. That now more than ever I could immerse myself into it, learn to love it, and become one of those cowboy-boot-wearing girls at every game, tailgate, and ring dunk.

Since then, my game day uniform looks something like this: an Aggie Football jersey, any kind of denim, a 12th Man Towel, and my beloved cowboy boots (with a matching belt). I’m the first one to stomp the stands in Kyle Field whenever I get the chance and, with every step I take, I can feel the Aggie Spirit flourish just a bit more. I’m well aware that if I wasn’t attending a school in Texas, I probably would have never bought a pair of cowboy boots. But now that I have them, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Ana Applewhite is a member of the Her Campus TAMU chapter and is currently exploring her interests as a writer. She is passionate about digital media and finding the best way to communicate exciting experiences. Beyond Her Campus, Ana is the VP of Administration for the Aggie Advertising Club and the Recruitment and Events Director for the Venezuelan Student Association. She is pursuing a degree in Marketing which is her absolute favorite thing in the world, and every time she learns something new about it, she falls in love with her career a little bit more.