Paul Katz
April 25, 2005 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Traditionally the preferred footwear of macho men from Teddy Roosevelt and Gen. George S. Patton to Orlando Bloom and Jake Gyllenhaal, Frye boots (which have been around since 1863) are now adorning the tootsies of Hollywood’s pretty young things. Jessica Alba’s lasso-wielding dancer in Sin City , Sandra Bullock’s FBI showgirl in Miss Congeniality 2, and Naomi Watts’ mom on the run in The Ring Two all sport the manly, old-school shoes. And with Jessica Simpson accessorizing her Daisy Dukes with a chestnut-belted harness model in the upcoming The Dukes of Hazzard, the trend shows no signs of abating. So why are ladies suddenly stepping into these rugged stompers? ”Actresses are playing a lot more tough women now,” says Sin City costume designer Nina Proctor. ”And these boots evoke a ‘don’t mess with me’ attitude. It’s all about comfort and kicking butt.”

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