Western Adventurer

In her book, “Dressing Rich”, Leah Feldon identified several meta-types of upper-class woman in America.  I highly recommend her book – but it was written in 1982, so a few things have changed.   One of the things that I believe has changed is one of the types, which she calls, “L.A. Throwaway”.

“[LATs] are young, or they look young (thanks to the best cosmetic surgery money can buy), and are very health and body conscious.  Their fashions confirm their wealth – diamond stud earrings, gold Rolex watches, Louis Vuitton bag, Yves Saint Laurent jacket and blouse. .  . but there is always something that is a throwaway – three year old Levis (worn with the Saint Laurents), or maybe cowboy boots – always something there that lets you know that even though they are are obviously swimming in money they are still “real folk”.”  – Leah Feldon, Dressing Rich

The LAT has morphed into what I’m going to call the Western Adventurer.   The Western Adventurer is easily identified by being extremely health and body conscious, because the most important element of this style is looking good in a bikini – regardless of whether one ever wears one.  She spends a substantial portion of her beauty budget on the spa, on exercise classes, and on her hair.  A golden glow is part and parcel of this look.

The Western Adventurer is always up for the next thing – she changes exercises, cleanses, and spa treatments constantly.   Does she wear makeup? Yes.  But she wears natural looking makeup, and is seldom seen with a red lip except perhaps for a wild night on the town.   Natural is her call word – the Western Adventurer wants to look as her look comes from her lifestyle, which is very important to her.

She’s called the Western Adventurer because this is the woman for whom a bucket list is her most important to-do.  She’s constantly travelling, and she usually wears a little something from her wanderings, whether it be an alpaca sweater from the trip she took to the Peruvian Highlands or a bracelet from her yoga pilgrimage to India.  She always accessorizes!

Clothing with drape that moves well with the body is essential to the Western Adventurer.   She’s not found in a suit unless her job requires it – and even then, the suit won’t have the sharpness that one would find in New York City.   Good fabric is very important to the Western Adventurer, but her version of “good fabric” includes hemp and organic cotton as well as the luxury versions of wool.   She wears a lot of neutral colors.

How does the Western Adventurer earn her money?  Ideally she’s some form of entrepreneur, or works at least partially from home.   Her career, while important to her, is part of her lifestyle, not the reason she gets up in the morning.  (Or if it is, she wouldn’t admit it).   California, New Mexico, Arizona, and Colorado are the primary stomping grounds of the Western Adventurer – but you’ll find them in every state, every country … and of course, all over the world on their travels!

Examples of Western Adventurers in public life:  Kate Hudson; Gwyneth Paltrow; Richard Branson; Cameron Diaz; Rachel Aniston.


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