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The National Day of the Cowboy: 3 Clothing Updates

National Day of the Cowboy Logo

The National Day of the Cowboy (TNDOTC) is this Saturday, July 27thand we will be celebrating this day designed to preserve, protect and promote our pioneer heritage and cowboy culture.  The image of the cowboy as a hero is pervasive in American culture and a big reason that AJ’s ventured into business.   We love the western lifestyle and a cowboy strikes an emotional chord for us.  We find it inspiring that there are still men & women throughout the country who are working cowboys & cowgirls.  These are our customers and we love what they stand for!

The National Day of the Cowboy
Code of Conduct for Cowboys & Cowgirls©

1. Live each day with honesty and courage.

2. Take pride in your work. Always do your best.

3. Stay curious. Study hard and learn all you can.

4. Do what has to be done and finish what you start.

5. Be tough, but fair.

6. When you make a promise, keep it.

7. Be clean in thought, word, deed, and dress.

8. Practice tolerance and understanding of others.

9. Be willing to stand up for what’s right.

10. Be an excellent steward of the land and its animals.

Saturday will be the 8th annual National Day of the Cowboy and as of July, Mississippi joined Wyoming, California, New Mexico, Arizona, Oklahoma and Oregon as one of the 7 states that have passed a resolution awarding permanent status to the 4th Saturday of July as the National Day of the Cowboy.  Other states including Kentucky, Idaho, Indiana, Texas, Tennessee and Washington have secured proclamations or resolutions and still others like Colorado, South Dakota and Nevada have volunteers working to find sponsors within their own legislatures to secure additional proclamations.

Membership Pin NDOTC Membership Pin

Spear heading this whole mission is the non-profit National Day of the Cowboy 501 (c) 3 Organization.  Their mission is to contribute to the preservation of America’s Cowboy heritage so that the history and culture which the United States Congress’s National Day of the Cowboy resolution honors, can be shared and perpetuated for the public good, through education, the arts, celebrations, gatherings, rodeos, and community activities.

In order to help TNDOTC AJ’s will donate $5 to The National Day of the Cowboy Organization for every purchase made on our site this week using the code:  COWBOY at check-out.  The code will be in effect from Sunday, July 21st to Sunday, July 28th.

Whether you like the style of the Old West  or you prefer newer western wear, AJ's has the perfect cowboy gear for you and you'll be helping a very worthwhile cause.  If you’d like to make your own donation directly please click here.   With your help we could make The National Day of the Cowboy become a permanently recognized national day in all 50 states.

So, what do today’s cowboys want in their clothing?  They what their ancestors wanted... good, well-made, rugged clothing for everyday wear and somethin’ special for going into town.  Our cowgirl shoppers are experts in putting together what the modern cowboy needs, but we pride ourselves on remembering the traditions of the past by offering styles that are reminiscent of what our early pioneers and cowboy wore.  Although the work ethic of the cowboy has not changed over the years, the clothing has changed based on the natural evolution of cowboy culture.


Old West Cowboys Old West Cowboys
Modern Cowboys Modern Cowboys

To illustrate this evolution we've picked 3 updates to cowboy clothes from our Old West Collection vs. our modern Cowboy collection to illustrate a “that was then this is now” of cowboy style.

1. Solid Pullovers vs. Plaid Snaps:

In the past, cowboys avoided looking like a “city slicker” by wearing pullover shirts in solid colors. Today’s cowboy is not confined to the borders of his fence.  He prefers a great looking plaid shirt with pearl snaps and even a little embroidery at the yoke!  A snap shirt that’s practical to work in and can’t get caught up on a post, but can also be worn for a meeting in town.


"Farm Hand" by Scully® "Farm Hand" Classic Woven Old West Shirt by Scully®
"Tulsa" Cowboy shirt "Tulsa" embroidered, snap plaid Cowboy Shirt

2. Banded Collar w/ Full Sleeves vs. Collared Shirts w/ Tailored Sleeves:

Cowboys clothes used to be limited by his circumstances. Often cowboys would need to buy their clothes from traders and the military because of cost.   Style was not top of the list… what they could afford… was. Fuller sleeves and banded collars were the look of the day vs. the modern cowboy who likes a shirt with a collar and more tailored sleeves.


"Cuff & Banded" Old West Shirt "Cuff & Banded" Old West Cowboy Shirt
"Olive" Cowboy shirt by Stetson® "Olive" Poplin Snap Cowboy Shirt by Stetson®.

3. Canvas Vests vs. Leather Vests:

Still an important piece of cowboy apparel today, the cowboy vest once offered warmth without the confines of a coat and plenty of pockets for storing your gear while out on the range.  The fit had to be snug and many were made from a sturdy canvas.  Now vests have a much looser fit and are being made in quality leathers and suede with traditional western details.


"Old West" vest "Old West" Canvas vest by Rangewear®.
"Buffed Calf" Vest "Buffed Calf" Whip Stitched Cowboy Vest by Scully®.

We salute the cowboys from the past and The National Day of the Cowboy Organization for helping to preserve this historic time in our history.  Today’s cowboys are still dealing with elements from the sun beating down on em’ to the rain and the cold , but they have more options when choosing their clothing. Although cowboy clothing has changed over the years, a cowboy’s love of the land does not.  If you’re a cowboy we’d love to hear  how things have changed for you and how things have remained the same.

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