Recently a friend asked me for some fashion advice. She is planning a winter holiday to Europe and wanted to know what type of scarf she should look for. I love hearing travel plans because I get to live vicariously through my single friend’s lives! Winter in Europe is nothing like winter here in Australia or New Zealand. For most of the winter here, it is wet and windy and the snow fields… well, lets just say that I’m sure our slopes are the main reason why snow makers were invented. Europe is a real winter wonderland with powder snow and there is always enough snow on the ground to make your own snowman.
A very funky Alexander McQueen silk skull scarf (try saying that 3 times very quickly!)
Hands down, the scarf is my favourite accessory. I love to knit myself a new scarf every winter because it gives me an excuse to lounge in front of the fire for hours and also the sense of achievement I feel when I finish my scarf is like no other (that’s because I am unable to follow a pattern and knitting in straight lines is the best I can do!)
Freha gets it right.
I want to tell you a little story about an experience I had with wearing a scarf. Some years ago, I was on my way to a job interview and I had tied a silk scarf around my neck to zjusz up my outfit. But I wasn’t happy with the way I had tied the scarf, and instead of listening to my instincts and taking the scarf off, I went ahead and wore it anyway. I felt so uncomfortable during the interview, that I still believe I did not get the job because my confidence was so shaken – all because I didn’t know how to tie my scarf. I vowed to myself that I would learn how to tie scarves properly. I promise you, if your scarf is tied properly, you will feel more confident which as we all know enhances our natural beauty – what more could a girl ask for?
Sometimes it is good to look at how other people are wearing their scarves – this helps to get ideas on different ways to tie yours.
I took this attitude with me when buying a ubiquitous sarong in Ubud when hubby and I were on our honeymoon. I made a point of having the store owner show me how to wear and tie my sarong in the local fashion. I remember so well the knowing looks I received from the local women because I was wearing their national dress in the correct fashion, it made me feel distinctive.
By doing justice to the sarong I didn’t look like your typical tourist. Wouldn’t we all like to feel the same when strolling down the street? (Or the Champs Èlysèe for that matter.)
The weather doesn’t have to be cool to necessitate the wearing of a scarf either, because light weight fabrics like cotton, silk, and linen mean that a scarf is an accessory that can be worn all year round.
Even in the height of summer, a scarf can be a feature of your ensemble.
The Pashmina is a scarf that has become a considerable addition to every woman’s wardrobe over the past decade. If you own only one scarf, make it a Pashmina.
Jessica Alba is a huge fan of the Pashmina and of scarves in general – she wears them well.
I think it is important, if you can, to have various types of scarves in your wardrobe. Silk, Pashmina, fine wool, chunky wool knit, crocheted knit, and in as many different lengths and finishes; skinny, long, short, square, rectangular, embellished with sequins… etc. etc.
Celebs use their Pashmina to keep warm and to keep the Paparazzi at bay (or maybe Jen simply forgot to brush her teeth?)
Fashion trends come and go, but rarely has one appealed to such a wide audience – age plays no part and you don’t have to be a size zero either to wear your favourite scarf.
Giselle and Jennifer and their Pashmina.
If you want to add a little excitement to your ensemble or to change the look of a favourite outfit, a scarf could be just what you need. It just has that knack of adding a little something extra. Which brings me to how scarves are being worn besides around your neck.
For Autumn/Winter, Dolce & Gabbana, Paul Smith and Jean Paul Gaultier have all sent models down the runway wearing headscarves in manner of Her Majesty. I want to officially caution you here though, because I think that one would have to be very confident to carry this look off. I feel that this is not a look for most of us ladies.
But, if you want to give this trend a go, take my advice and let your scarf be the only element that embellishes what should be a simple and plain outfit. Take your inspiration from the only other headscarf queens (also the only others who could successfully carry this look off in my opinion) – Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly.
Give your headscarf a bohemian edge a la Nicole Richie. These days she is probably the only one of us that is successful in championing the headscarf.
Diane Kruger and her favourite scarf – dressed up and dressed down.
When it comes to silk scarves, there is no finer than the legendary French label Hermès. I suggest downloading the Hermès handbook entitled “Playtime With Your Scarf” from their website. It illustrates the many wonderful ways to tie your scarf in easy-to-follow instructions.
We have now seen why scarves are such a versatile accessory because you can wear it around your neck, tied, knotted or draped. But have you tried tying one around your hips, or through your belt loops in lieu of a belt for a little added colour?
Balenciaga has sent scarves down the runway over the past few seasons.
Try wearing a large scarf around your shoulders as a shawl. I love to carry a light weight scarf with me on warm evenings when I go out just in case the weather turns cool and when it invariably does, I wrap the scarf over my shoulders like a shrug and tie it behind my back between the shoulder blades.
Dolce and Gabbana and Paul Smith following in the footsteps of Hermès.
So Deb, my lovely friend, I hope I have given you some ideas for scarf shopping. I also hope you will be daring and look for more than one style – we wouldn’t wear just one style of shoe or own just one handbag would we? Variety is the spice of life, my love!
Ciao for now,
P.S. Happy 4th Birthday to my baby, Annabel Jade! Mummy loves you so much – you are my little accessories queen! xxxx
Sources: Hermès, Google, Garance Dorè.