A Tale of Two City Slickers

In the Oklahoma National Stockyards, two editors search for shops where you can lasso the Western wardrobe of your dreams.
Jennifer Mckenzie Frazier and Les Thomas

Call it arrested development. The two of us never outgrew our longing to be a cowboy and a cowgirl. We’re suckers for boots, hats, belts, and jeans. Always have been.

That’s why the Oklahoma National Stockyards feels like a wonderland. It’s loaded with some of the fanciest, biggest Western wear outfitters in the country. It’s a place where you can arrive in street duds and by high noon look like Garth Brooks or Reba McEntire.

Here are our picks for Western clothes and accessories from top to bottom (the more horseshoes, the better).

Hats
 Shorty’s Caboy Hattery: These flawless hats are custom-made to fit your head, costing from $425 to $1,700. It takes three to four months to finish an order. “We send hats all over the world,” says hatmaker Larry Brandon. 1206 South Agnew; www.shortyshattery.com or (405) 232-4287.
 Little Joes Boots: Pick up a stylish new hat from the American Hat Company for around $200. “People who come in here are real cowboys and cowgirls. We have our share of tourists too,” says owner Joe Bass. 2219 Exchange Avenue; (405) 236-2650.

Boots
 Langston’s: This store covers almost an entire city block, and the boot department is stacked with Ariat riding boots for women, Minnetonka moccasins, and stylish Justin and Tony Lama boots. They even stock John Deere Boots down to size 1 for babies. 2224 Exchange Avenue; www.langstons.com or (405) 235-9536.
 Little Joes Boots: Find a nice selection of upscale Western boots from Rios of Mercedes and other premium bootmakers, ranging from $215 to $750.

Shirts, Belts, and Jeans
 Langston’s: Finish out your wardrobe with hand-tooled leather purses, sequined belts, Montana Silversmiths belt buckles, Panhandle Slim Retro Western shirts, and Cruel Girl and Wrangler jeans. Take a piece of the Wild West home with reproductions of movie posters, including High Noon and Gunfight at the OK Corral.

What Two Dudes Want To Know
We asked Joe Bass, owner of Little Joes Boots, for tips for city folk like us.

 How do you handle hat hair?
Keep your hat on.

 How do you master the “jean crease”?
Tell the cleaners to give you all the starch they’ve got.

 Will we look like bad guys if we wear black hats?
No. Good guys wear black hats too.

 If we saddle up in sneakers, will you give us the rope?
Absolutely.

"A Tale of Two City Slickers" is from the June 2008 issue of Southern Living. Because prices, dates, and other specifics are subject to change, please check all information to make sure it's still current before making your travel plans.