Do you have reasons why you wear a western snap button shirt? Here are some reasons why the snap shirt is part of my daily wardrobe.
I was curious what people were posting about snap button shirts, so I did a search on Google for “who wears snap shirts”. The results were all over the place from various websites and chat forums. The discussions focused on whether or not to wear snap shirts. Some were concerned the shirts were too much of a “costume” shirt or did not care for the “western” look. Some describe the history of the shirts and some were concerned with what other clothing to pair the shirt with. Other articles described how to get the “cowboy look” and a fashion magazine promoted the western shirt as a casual style for your daily summer wear.
All of the articles, comments and opinions got me thinking why I wear snap button shirts. I came up with six reasons. Why six? All of my snap-shirts have six pearl snap buttons on the front placket that I pinch together on a daily basis (some shirts may or may not have a 7th snap button near the collar). This made sense for the number of reasons. If you wear snap shirts then you probably have your own six reasons why.
1. They are unique.
I rarely see someone wearing a snap button shirt. I don’t know why more people don’t wear them more often or maybe I am not at the places where these shirts are worn. Part of my goal with this blog is to notice when someone is wearing a snap shirt and ask about it. I want to know why they choose to wear it. I feel like I am part of select few who wear these shirts on a daily basis. Most of my snap shirts are from thrift stores and are harder for me to find. If I had the funds I would probably buy my shirts from an online store or visit a local retailer. Doing this would take away the whole uniqueness and adventure of finding that right shirt. It may take weeks or months in between my snap shirt purchases.
2. Makes my clothes shopping easier.
As I mentioned above, I buy most of my clothes at the thrift store. There are many normal button shirts to choose from that I like. It is too tempting to buy more that what I need just because I like the brand name on the tag or the color or pattern. Now that I wear snap-shirts finding them is rare. If I do find one it has too fit and be in good shape (no stains, rips, missing buttons). I have cut my search time in half for snaps within the disorganized racks of shirts. Snap button shirts are easier to locate because of the style and snaps. I just look at the shoulder style or look for snaps on the sleeves. This process has made my shopping easier.
3. My wife has started calling me Nashville.
Updating my shirt selection has warranted a few new nicknames. The TV show Nashville sparked my wife’s nickname for me. Wearing the shirts with jeans, a pair of boots and a favorite trucker cap and toss in my guitar with a few chords and I have the country music style happening.
4. I’ve created my own personal brand.
They say that the clothes make a man or woman. Well it can happen with a shirt that you snap. The western inspired snap shirts can set you apart as being cowboy, musician, farmer, or just a guy with unique sense of style clinging to the iconic American West. I like to pair my snap shirts most days for work with a pair of chinos, corduroys, or dark washed jeans, and my Ariat Rambler boots. To dress it up I will wear a brown or grey sport jacket with the same ensemble.
I recently saw a friend that I randomly see at social events in which I am wearing more formal clothes or some sort of sport outfit. He made the comment that I had the cowboy look or a country musician look going on ( I was wearing a Dragonfly short sleeve shirt – designed originally by Edward Dada for the music scene and now out of business, a pair of Levi 527, my everyday Ariat Rambler boots and a blue Costa mesh cap). Jokingly I said I was the ‘urban cowboy’ without the cows. Inside, I was thinking “yes” someone got my style and liked it. Your daily wardrobe and what you wear around others speaks of who you are or aspire to be. I don’t aspire to be a cowboy or country music guy but the clothes I wear makes me feel like tackling the day’s work or just relaxing with my wife and kids.
5. It has started me to be healthier, losing weight.
Over the years I have put on some weight around the mid section and because of that my first snap-shirts were getting a little tight, some I could not wear. That was incredibly frustrating to me since one of the shirts was a real nice jean shirt that I could not button anymore.
About 2 years ago I changed some of my work habits and got a stand up desk (I have been sitting down for almost 12 years in my web job). I also injured my knee after playing a season of volleyball due to my increased mass.
I said to myself NO MORE! I wanted to be in shape to play sports and be active with my kids.
I got on an exercise program and started the T-25 DVD series, lifting weights and improving my diet. Over the past year, I have dropped a little over 15 pounds, tightened my midsection and thinned out my facial features. I feel great! I have more energy and more zeal for each day because I feel awesome. I keep on exercising with the T-25 program, kettlebell weights, and random games of volleyball.
The best part, I can wear that blue jean snap-shirt now. I have been able to give away a lot of my regular button shirts that are now too big for me. My wardrobe of snap button shirts inspired me to lose weight so I can look trim and healthy and feel great for each day.
6. Western snap shirts have a story and heritage connected to America’s West.
I have enjoyed the western states of America and the culture of cowboys. Western shirts were originally costume shirts fashioned by tailors for Western movies and rodeo cowboys. Overtime those shirts became the iconic shirt of cowboys and snap shirts were produced for the demand of the public to connect with the iconic West.
The book, Western Shirts: A Classic American Fashion (first published in 2004), provides a storyline of how these shirts got their start and how family businesses came into existence to manufacture these shirts for the Western apparel industry. This book goes into great detail about vintage shirt design, labels and the companies behind the clothing – Miller Western Wear, Rockmount Ranch Wear Mfg. Co, H Bar C, Levi Strauss & Co., Karman INC., Westmoor, Pendleton and Wrangler.
7. Life is full of unpredictable events
This is an additional point to my blog title. Sometimes a snap button shirt may have a seventh pearl snap near the collar of the shirt. It all depends on the design of the shirt if a snap or regular button is used. Some shirts even have an 8 or 9 snap buttons on the placket depending on the shirt style. Life is full of unpredictable events both good and bad – nothing is the same day to day. So like my snap shirts each one could be fastened differently depending on the shirt chosen. Whatever situation is thrown your way grab ahold of it and embrace the good or bad and learn from it.
“Snap your shirt”.
Whatever the reason(s) why you wear snap shirts – you have to admit it’s a great shirt to wear whether your office is shared on the 25th floor or on a 5000 acre spread. If you are not a “cowboy” snap button shirt wearer maybe its time to give it a try. You can probably find a shirt at a local thrift store, any Western retail store or a trendy store in the mall to try one on for size. Go ahead and try something new – go “snap your shirt”.