Western wear has become a staple in Colorado fashion and lifestyle. Over the years, the fashion world has fallen in love with the western apparel.
The title of the exhibit at the Foothills Art Center in Golden, Cowboys and Rock Stars, hits the nail on the head. Everyone from a hardworking cowboy to a jamming rock star (and everyone in between) has worn and will continue to wear Rockmount Ranch Wear.
Walking into the Foothills Art Center, you are transported through the evolution of the longest running production style shirt designs made in the United States, Rockmount Ranch Wear. They have a comprehensive exhibit of the shirts, accessories, successes and failures of the Colorado company.
Rockmount Ranch Wear was founded by Jack A. Weil in 1946 and is still operated out of the original building in LoDo. Jack was an innovator on many levels with the company; mother of pearl snaps, diamond and sawtooth snaps, and much more. Each creation was functional but it made a fashion statement.
Each decade had its signature style at Rockmount Ranch Wear, just like decades in the fashion industry: 1950s triple snaps; 1960s longer collars, synthetics, more flamboyant patterns; 1980s ‘urban cowboy’; and 1990s-’00s cowboy style becoming more popular thanks to Garth Brooks.
Many actors and athletes are huge fans of Rockmount and Foothills Art Center showed many of the men and women who wore the shirts, everyone from Matthew McConaughey to Robert Redford to Clark Gable and the football star Tom Brady.
The memorable movie ‘Brokeback Mountain’ featured a number of the shirts. The director, Ang Lee, requested the shirts from Rockmount Ranch and one of the shirts represented a symbol connecting Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger’s characters. Anne Hathaway also wore a red plaid Rockmount Ranch Wear shirt in the movie.
From actors to rock stars, there are huge names that wear the shirts. Don Henley from the Eagles, Elvis, Bob Dylan, and the list goes on. The red fringe shirt of Jack White from the band White Stripes is featured in the exhibit in a glass case. It may look familiar because it is the shirt he wore for the album cover, ‘Elephant.’ They also made a custom shirt for the Grand Ole Opry in 2000.
Make sure to visit Rockmount’s website for the complete list and pictures of all the stars who wear Rockmount Ranch Wear.
Not only do actors, cowboys, and rock stars wear the shirts, so do politicians. Colorado governor John Hickenlooper wore a custom shirt with hop vine details, and also members of Congress wore custom shirts for the DNC in Denver 2008. Those shirts are on display as well.
Stop by the gift shop on your way out because they are selling a limited edition shirt in honor of Rockmount’s 65th anniversary. hey are off-white with columbines and mountains stitching.
Make a trip this weekend to Golden, Colorado. There are many attractions, and the Cowboys and Rock Stars exhibit will be going on until September 4. The Foothills Art Center is open Monday through Saturday 10am to 5pm, and Sunday 1pm to 5pm. Admission is five dollars for adults, three dollars for those who are 65 years and older, free for members and students.