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The Art of Scarf

I was always fascinated by the way people wear scarves. One little item can completely change the whole look and capture many eyes. It also directly speaks of their personalities and sense of style. And you are immediately drawn to this amazingly stylish person because you feel like maybe they are ahead of your level in the styling school, or know something that you don’t.

My French friends really know how to use scarves – this applies to both men and women. It is just so natural to them like lingeries and french berets. They wear with simple sweaters and look flawlessly elegant and so effortless, not at all looking like tried hard. And this girl once I knew, I thought actually she was not interesting in my own terms (please don’t judge me) then one time she was wearing a scarf on her hair like someone from Denmark and instantly I found her so cool and I wanted to hear more about her! Apparently she was from Portland. I am conscious about wearing it on my head. Are you comfortable with that? So how do we change this game? 

Let me start with a lovely story. Have you ever read a biography of Audrey Hepburn? Before her time, she had been trained to be a ballerina. However during the war, her family had lost everything. Her father left the family and her mom struggled to meet ends for living and cost for Audrey’s expensive ballet lessons. Interesting thing is that her iconic waif like physique is actually caused by the intensive ballet training and malnutrition from the hardship of the war, and one of her signature style with ballet tops and cigarette pants were from her only wardrobe pieces she owned in those days. Sad, right?


Audrey Hepburn

However, her teachers and ballet colleagues remembered those days a little differently. They specifically recalled that she was quite fashionable and wearing different outfits everyday. How did she do it? By styling it with a scarf! They said one day she would wear it on her neck, the next day on the waist as a sash belt, and the next on her hair! And wrist, headband and the list goes on. People who knew her often said that there is something special about her which they couldn't quite pin point. But yeah, this was one of many special something that she possessed. It was her spirit, with which she was able to create something new each and everyday for herself in the midst of all those miseries, with one thing she had, The Only A Scarf. I almost immediately think of her scarf as a piece of hope. The war, lack of food, lack of necessities and absence of father, yet she wasn't certainly lack of hope because none of them could prevent her from stop hoping and loving herself, and she would wear it on her to display its existence. Wow, I didn't want it to be this philosophical for a style talk. But hey, are you inspired yet? I "Hope" so.

Let's walk away from being too inspired and try to be practical. What I actually learned is that it does not take courage or anything like that. Well, though hope that we are hopeful in mastering the art of scarf, somewhat. It looks natural on those people because they are used to it. Think about it as jewelry. You wear it often enough and it feels like a part of you. So my take on this is "get used to it!" But start slow. I think a key to the art of scarfing is the more you use, the better you get at it. Do it and be confident or forget about that you are wearing, only to realize when someone complimenting about it. I did that the other day with a cuff earring and it totally worked. I was a bit conscious at first but I forgot about it that I was wearing it. and Voila, I was cool. Having your scarves designated area in the closet (this same thing applies to your belts), easily visible will help you quickly browse and incorporate them into your outfit.

Do this today. Gather your scarves and try on. You will be amazed, how many people start complementing. Add not only to your neck, to hair, waist, wrist and ankle and to your bag. Wrap yourself up with it like shawl, tie as bra top and wear as a skirt. Be creative, flaunt about it and enjoy your creations as your personality shines. The followings are some examples to try.

Over Coats & Blazers Perfect accent to the formal suiting, mixing surprising sporty element to your basic coats or blazers.

                                                  Image Source: style.com

Over dress & coat with belt This style became unforgettable popular with Burberry Prorsum F/W 2014 collection.

Image Source: VanityFair 

Tie Over Your Bag Isn’t that bag suddenly more interesting and alive? Just imagine without it! You can also wrap it around bag handle, tie as a bow, just hang loose or even braid! And of course on your wrist! 



Scarf tie top You can totally wear as a bra top, bandeau and one shoulder top. Just think of ways to wrap around your torso.

Image Source: Fashioncorner.net


Summer Scarf Wear with tops and dresses for those seem to have over exposed neck and shoulder during summer.

Image Source: spotPOPfashion


Statement Scarf How did this basic grey sweatshirt and monochrome outfit get amazingly fashionable looks? Make a statement with a colorful scarf.

         Image Source: frontrowview      
Image Source: imaxtree


If you are kind of lost in how to tie and styling with scarves?  This book, “The Art of the Scarf” by Libby VanderPloeg is pretty cool. I love the illustrated instructions!  See some more here on her blog. 

Image Source: various google search images