This blog was written by blog contributor and Miss Rodeo America 2013, Chenae Shiner
“Clothes and manners do not make the man; but, when he is made, they greatly improve his appearance” – Henry Ward Beecher
Rodeo queens we are know for a lot of things, our apparel being at the top of that list. When you walk into a room, before you even shake a hand, your outfit can speak volumes about you. So what do you want to say? How does your wardrobe represent you as a person?
We, as rodeo queens, have a tendency to look around and compare ourselves to the girls who have gone before us, and who are surrounding us. But one thing to remember, those girls aren’t you and you aren’t them! What one rodeo queen wears may not work for you, and that’s okay, because you will bring something unique of your own to the table. The journey to Miss Rodeo America does not happen over night. It’s years worth of self discovery, experiences, and learning to stand behind who you are as a young woman; and your wardrobe should represent that journey.
When I was planning my wardrobe for Miss Rodeo America I thought of my wardrobe as a fancy dinner… I wanted to have appetizers, salads, entrees, and desserts… I wanted the full course! I wanted outfits that showed my fun side, my serious side, the creative parts of me, the traditional, the modern, and everything in between. When getting ready to go to Miss Rodeo America there are numerous outfit details to be worked out. I had millions of opinions being throw at me from every angle, my head was spinning. Then my mom gave me the greatest advice, she said, “You are the one walking across that stage; not me, the designers, or your coaches. So you need to decide what you will feel best in, because you will be the one out there taking the risks and gaining the rewards.” After that every time I went to make decisions I imagined how I would feel as I crossed that stage at Miss Rodeo America; if it made me feel excited I went with it, if I had doubts it was crossed off the list. Your wardrobe needs to resemble who you are as a person. I believe if you send a girl into an interview in an outfit that she isn’t comfortable with, she won’t be able to relax and let herself shine during that interview. Confidence in your wardrobe will shine through in your entire demeanor, and greatly improve your contest.
I’ve learned the key to a great outfit isn’t so much in the number of rhinestones, or the cost, it’s in how that outfit makes the girl feel when she’s wearing it. If a girl has a clean look, clothes that are fit well, and a confidence that makes it all come together; she is just as much in the running as the girl in the newest styles. There isn’t one look that makes a girl “The Winner”, it’s the girl who makes the look. They say you wear the clothes, the clothes don’t wear you. Be aware that you are dressing for your body type and accentuation your assets.
One thing I always did with my outfits was put it all together and then stand in front of the mirror, if anything jumped out that immediately caught my attention, I removed it from my outfit. I always wanted to make sure that people saw me, and that when I was speaking they were focused on my words, not an overwhelming accessory. Don’t get me wrong, there are certain times and events when bigger is better, and those outfits are a blast to wear! You just have to know when its time to tone your outfit down and let people see you as a person.
I was very blessed to work with many talented designers and coaches. They knew me as a person, they knew my body type, likes and dislikes. Take the time to have one on one conversations with the people helping to build your wardrobe and show them your dream. From the hat to the boots, every detail represents you! So don’t have any regrets and leave everything out on the table. This is your time, enjoy every moment of it, and wear what you love!