Stylish Ways to Wear Winter Scarves
It’s scarf weather, and we couldn’t be more thrilled! Some don’t put much thought into these innocuous little textiles, and that’s really a pity. Scarves come in as many beautiful patterns and luxurious materials as any other piece of clothing we wear - they’re fabulous, versatile, and perfect for stylish experimentation. Instead of wrapping your scarf a couple times ‘round your neck and calling it good, let’s look at what creative and smart ways you can rock this simple accessory.
The Full Bundle
For those of us in the coldest climes, we tend to work with the heaviest of scarves: we’re talking bulky materials, like chunky wool knits or voluminous blanket scarves. This can limit your options as far as intricate scarf style goes, but there’s still plenty of room to groove out with some surprising wraps.
You can turn your scarf into a cowl, with a drape in front of your neck, the ends wrapped around your throat and then pulled flush with the bottom of the drape - it falls charmingly, and stands ready to be pulled up over the bottom of your face when the wind’s being a jerk. You can do a short braid with a chunky knit scarf that looks stunning, or go modern with a man’s tie knot.
With a big enough scarf, you can go completely off-script and turn your scarf into another garment entirely: fold your blanket scarf into a triangle and drape it over your shoulders like a shawl. Then simply belt it over your clothes. (This is also a great look with a large, colorful silk scarf and a thin belt - that’s not going to keep you safe from the cold, but it’s a great decorative look.)
The Comfort Knit
Welcome to the comfortable middleman between desperate-for-warmth heavy scarves and the super sleek fashionable style! This level of scarf tends to be in the traditional oblong shape, and made of soft woven wool or dense cotton or synthetic materials. It’s easier to work into more complicated drapes and knots:
Wendy Nguyen has an amazing and comprehensive scarf tutorial on YouTube, covering 25 ways to wear scarves of this thickness. She employs a number of techniques from rolling to loops to tucking - and they’re all as easy as they sound! Let her inspire you with looks from the classic to the snuggly.
There’s so much more you can do with these scarves - your opportunities for creativity are endless! You can tie and twist two scarves together for a DIY infinity scarf, combining colors or patterns as you please. You could be daring, and tie an enormous bow at a jaunty angle to your throat - a potentially perfect look for arriving to a holiday party!
There are also many tutorials out there for a necklace style using these types of scarves - generally, it involves tying a decorative knot in your scarf with the ends hidden away so it drapes just like a pendant. More structured necklace looks include multiple knots, or braiding your scarf so it circles your throat more closely. (Actual scarf necklaces are a whole other, gorgeous thing and you should look them up on Pinterest when you have some time. Some serious time.)
The Sleek Wrap
While these tend to be the least effective scarves for keeping toasty warm, they still pack some insulating power - particularly scarves made of silk and wrapped snugly. These thin scarves also tend to be the most like brightly-colored plumage, so many jewel tones and daring patterns ensnaring and enchanting the eye.
Everything you can do with a bulkier scarf, you can do with more finesse and intricacy here. Your braided styles get tighter, your knots sleeker, and the kerchief knotted at your throat makes you the personification of flirty chic. Wrapping a long silk scarf tightly around your neck lends you statuesque modernity, while tying a bisous bow tie gives you a touch of luxurious whimsy.
The utility of these scarves doesn’t stop with being wrapped around your neck or shoulders either! A cleverly folded silk scarf becomes a coquettish belt, or a charming headband. If you’re cleaning or feeling retro, tie your scarf over your hair a la the 1940’s (like Rosie the Riveter). There are also so many culturally-specific headwrap styles that can inspire you, so don’t be afraid to draw on and honor your heritage.
Feeling pretty excited about those scarves now, right? We’ve got the bug, too. The only limit is your imagination, so show us what you got: tag us on Instagram with your best scarf styles, or jump into the comments!