What I Wore to the National Finals Rodeo



I may not be a real cowgirl, but I can at least dress like one, right? My mom and I had such a fun time attending opening night of the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas last Thursday. I had been to the NFR once before in 2019, but I wore a straw hat and brown booties… not a good look, as it made me out to be a total poser. I may still be posing this year, but at least my outfit is a little more convincing!


The only item in this look that I own are the skinny jeans. The flannel, adorable red cowgirl boots, and hat were all borrowed from my cousin for the event. I have a real cowgirl shirt (the kind with snaps!) from a western store, but of course it was back at home, as I hadn’t been home since September and didn’t know we would be attending the rodeo. It seems like whenever I need a specific clothing item, it is always elsewhere. I can’t wait ‘til I have my own apartment and can store all my clothes in one place again.

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My cousin said she bought these boots secondhand but that they were still really expensive because they’re a top brand. I love that they are painted with floral designs! After a few years of contemplation, I’ve finally convinced myself that I should get a pair of boots of my own. Between western-themed events (like the dance at my camp last summer), the occasional workday on my grandpa’s farm, and other fun activities like the NFR or riding horses, I think I would definitely get my cost per wear out of a pair of boots. Cost per wear and looking like a poser have been the main deterrents of getting my own, especially because cowgirl boots ain’t cheap, but I think I would wear them enough over the next few decades. Really, I should’ve bought a pair years ago since my feet stopped growing in the sixth grade. I probably could have already gotten my cost per wear out of them. A real cowgirl hat, on the other hand, would probably never get enough wears.

Anyway, the only questions now are what style of boots to get and where to buy them. I think I prefer the pointy-toed boots over square-toes, but should I get a classic brown pair or boots with a fun design? I love my cousin’s red ones, but are those less versatile/realistic? And where should I buy them? Boot Barn has some really cute pairs, but of course, they’re all very expensive… Decisions, decisions.

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On top of having a lot of fun planning my own outfit, there was a *lot* of unique fashion to be seen at the rodeo. I expected plenty of big hair and bedazzled jean pockets, which there were, but I was not expecting so many sequins. Maybe it was just because the NFR takes place in Las Vegas, but if I had known wearing a full sequin jumpsuit with cowgirl boots and a hat was acceptable, then I definitely would have tried it… I saw several really cute fringe jackets and one denim jacket with a single line of dainty bedazzled fringe on the back, which I totally would’ve worn myself. There were also several pairs of bell-bottom pants. I saw some super cute similar pants at one of the Cowboy Christmas shopping events my mom and I went to, but all of the bell bottoms were way too long! They were even too long on the girls wearing them at the rodeo—the pants were either rolled up a bunch or dragging on the floor. Why don’t clothing makers understand that girls are short?

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I don’t know hardly anything about the NFR, but I could be entertained at just about any in-person sporting event. I love the excitement of the crowd and have always thought sporting events are a fun excuse to get out of the house. The NFR has seven events, including bareback riding, steer wrestling, team roping, saddle bronc riding, calf roping, barrel racing, and bull riding. The pics above are of team roping and barrel racing, the only female event.


My favorite event is the bull riding, which they save for last. Have you ever ridden one of those mechanical bulls at a bar? I kind of want to do it, but knowing me, I would chicken out and only ride it in super slow-mo… I also enjoy seeing the cowboys ride the bucking horses, but all of the events are a good time. Thankfully, nobody got hurt on the night we were there!

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Have you ever been to a rodeo? Do you have any western items in your closet or would you be too much of a poser, like me? Either way, the rodeo was a blast, and I hope I can go again next year with my own pair of cowgirl boots.


Miles of smiles,


6 comments on “What I Wore to the National Finals Rodeo”

  1. What a fun outfit! I would love to go to a rodeo! The good thing about a pair of cowboy boots is that they don’t really wear out so they will last forever. I definitely don’t wear mine much but I do love them. Maybe finding a thrifted pair is the way to go. My cost per wear is still high but I did use birthday money to buy mine. It’s my most expensive pair of shoes!

    1. Oh I bet! But that’s a good point, they kind of last forever. I think I will buy a pair when I get back from Scotland! If I have any money left, that is. Haha.

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