Your Essential Guide to Scarves : Selection, Styling & Types
A scarf is a simple piece of fabric that is wrapped around the neck or shoulders, and sometimes, over the head. It is longer than it is wide and it comes in numerous sizes and shapes. Common ones include rectangular, triangular, and square scarves.
Scarves are the perfect combination of function and fashion. They are not only used to keep you warm but are popular fashion accessories as well. When used correctly, scarves add to the elegance and style of your attire. You should make sure that the pattern of your scarf does not clash with the colors or patterns present on any other part of your outfit.
Length and width;
The length and width of your scarf don’t only make its shape, but also help in differentiating between the male and female pieces. Scarves come in three different measures in length: short scarves (50-60 inches), standard scarves (~70 inches), and long scarves (>82 inches). They are around 7-10 inches in width. When it comes to choosing your scarf, be sure to select one that is within 10 inches of your height.
How to use;
You can use scarves in many ways, such as drapes and falls, knots and wraps or ties and bows. Traditional scarves are cold-weather classics. They are rectangular, typically made of wool, cashmere, mohair or other warm fabrics. They are generally 60-70 inches in length.
Cotton scarves are the most common and the most versatile of all types of scarves. they are soft, comfortable, breathable, and affordable, making them a preference of most women. They are made from pure cotton yarn that provides superior comfort and is simply the best for people with sensitive or allergic skin. Whether you are wearing a skirt or jeans, a cotton scarf goes well with everything.
Cotton scarves are available in many colours, you should choose the shade that matches well with the undertone of your skin, that way it will bring a glow to your face. If you have a rectangular scarf, let it fall on your shoulders and support it with a knot or make a loop with the scarf in your neck and keep tucking both ends through the loop.
They are made of lightweight, see-through, silky, drapey fabric which is very popular to make luxury garments. Chiffon scarves are very powerful and chic fashion accessories, they look great with both formal and informal outfits.
These scarves are available in plenty of colours, they go with both formal and informal dressing but require extensive care and get stained easily. You can wear them in many ways, wear them on your neck without wrapping, drape them on shoulders and make a fall-around tie, or tuck it in your of-shoulder top.
Silk scarves are known for their glossier appearance, vibrant prints, and colours. They are pricier but not only do they elevate your look but also retain the moisture of your skin and hair, they are hypoallergenic as well. Hand-painted silk scarves are much in demand and carry a premium. They can be tied around your neck for a sleek, sophisticated look, or tie one in your hair for a carefree throwback look that is perfectly on-trend.
Cashmere scarves are high-quality, light-weighted scarves made from natural fibre. They are suitable to be worn in all kinds of weather; they keep you warm in winters and don’t make you sweat. They are light-weighted, extremely soft with a silky feel and hypoallergenic. You can fold it in half, put your hand in the center, wrap it around your neck from the back, take the ends and pass it through the folded loop.
Pashmina scarves are popular for their insulating characteristics and their wonderful texture. Originally from Persia, these scarves are traditionally made from cashmere wool, but now can be made from a variety of fabrics.
They are very soft, light-weighted, comfortable and keep you warm in cold weather. Just wrapping a pashmina scarf around the neck is enough to spice up your outfit. They can be paired with basic outfits like t-shirts and jeans to add colour and extra emphasis. Fancy style shawl styles can also be draped over the shoulders for evening attires.
Velvet scarves look very pretty, decent, and elegant. Its fabric is soft and shiny but thick as well. This makes wrapping a velvet scarf around the neck in winters a bit uncomfortable. You can wrap them around the neck or carry them gracefully around your shoulders to flaunt your lady-like charm.
High-quality wool scarves are super soft, extremely breathable, and comfortable. They are made of natural fabric which helps to regulate body temperature and keep you warm and is suitable for sensitive skins.
Wool scarves are the best scarf investment you can make, owing to their resilience, long life, and the comfort they deliver. In short, simply drape it on your shoulders with equal ends on both sides and tie a not. If long, knot both the ends and roll twice in your neck like an infinity scarf.
Net scarves are solely used to accessorize an outfit since they cannot keep you warm. They look pretty and elegant, and you can carry a net scarf with a formal outfit. They are made of fine and smooth net fabric like tulle; trims like sequins, chains or laces can be added to the edges.
Viscose scarfs are made of soft; silk-felt synthetic fabric. These scarves drape beautifully, giving a flawless, elegant touch to any outfit. They are available in many vivid colours as it is extremely easy to dye the material.
Acrylic scarves are the best alternative to wool scarves but not as good as them when it comes to softness and breathability. They are made of acrylic fibres that are extremely lightweight, easy to care for, and stain and wrinkle resistant.
They provide warmth, and comfort, and will retain their shape. These scarves are commonly used for casual settings to carry on an everyday basis. They are large but light-weighted and easy to care for. Drape on your shoulder or spool once around your neck and let the sides flaunt.
It is a breathable and lightweight natural fibre that makes it suitable to be worn in any climate. Since they are warm, soft and an insulator by nature, they are an ideal choice for winter. Its fabric is resistant to stains, wind, and water; also strong, durable, and hypoallergenic.
In short, simply drape it on your shoulders with equal ends on both sides and tie a not. If long, knot both the ends and roll twice in your neck like an infinity scarf.
Linen scarves are not season-specific, linen is a type of fabric that lets you carry your stylish scarves throughout the year without considering the weather or seasons. However, summer linen is more prevalent in making scarves than in winter.
A linen scarf can instantly transform a formal look into a casual one. They are lightweight and thin, which makes carrying them in your handbag super feasible.
Satin is a glossy fabric that makes a great scarf for occasions where you want to dress up. Satin scarves are glossy and extremely suitable to wear with party wear or with a dull dress to enhance its shine and feel. You can wrap it over your hair or wear it like a tie.
Fleece is a fabric which is quite thick and as it does not fray it is quite easy to make a scarf out of this fabric.
The crinkled or crushed fabric has a depth which makes it good for scarves of solid colours. Add fringe trims for more texture. It’s like a chiffon scarf and is mostly used in summer. For beaches and outdoor activities of the day, these scarves come in extremely handy.
A bandana is a square piece of soft printed cotton with a nice border and interesting prints. It is quite small for full coverage as a scarf but many wear it around the neck in novel ways. It is a cool summer accessory used to keep you from dust, sun, and over sweating.
A cowl is not worn on the head like the hood but around the neck. Cowls are explicitly designed for winters; hence they are often knitted with wool, jersey, or pashmina materials. They are ready to use scarves as you don’t have to wrap them around your neck but simply pass the hole through your head. They have a deeper drape than usual.
An infinity scarf is also like a cowl neck scarf, however, with a bigger hole that you round not just once around your neck but twice. It is a sewn piece of cloth with less drape but doubly surrounding the neck. Different techniques and styles of knitting are used to make Infinity Scarves.
Snood is a combo of hood and cowl. You get a piece of fabric to cover your neck as well as your head. The fabric has a larger width that easily sits on your neck and covers your head. You need to create a loop to wear it, which is not too tricky as it also comes in the sewn form.
These scarves are mostly made of cotton and are more like an accessory of fashion than keep you warm or cool. As the name suggests, the triangle scarf comes in a triangular shape. Usually, the third angle covers the chest while corners after wrapping around the neck fall on the shoulders.
The stoles have a narrow width that shapes exactly like a strip. Stoles are also winter-season scarves that can sit on both or one shoulder. These are mostly made with furs and are very soft and plush in appearance. Mainly, fur stoles are carried with fancy party wear during winters to keep from the cold and for style and fashion as well. However, pre-or post-winters, they can be made of silk.
The less expensive version of a stole, muffler scarves are almost like the furs; however, you can have them in common and less luxurious fabrics such as cotton, wool, velvet, etc. Another difference here is a muffler can be taken during summers too, but a stole is only a winter thing.
Sarong is worn around the waistline or hipline to show off bodies at the parties around bays and beaches. Sarong doesn’t come with any hook and is wrapped around the waist using knots as a piece of the skirt over a bikini. Sarongs are worn around armpits, waistline, and even on the shoulder as a free shawl.
These are oversized rectangle-shaped scarves which are a halfway point between a scarf and a blanket usually 56” square. They are made of thick, cozy fabrics that keep you warm and make a statement. You can pair with your casual outfits such as sweaters, jeans, and knee-high boots as well as scan with an outfit that is streamlined and fashion-forward.
Plaid patterns are very common on blanket scarves. To wear a blanket scarf or shawl, you can use different methods like wrapping it around your neck, on the shoulders, as well as covering the whole back.
Jersey is a synthetic fabric made of wool, cotton, and synthetic fibres. They come with double sides, one side is made of pilled loops while the other one is made with types of knitting, mostly rib-knit. Usually, the right side of Jersey has rib knitting and a smoother appearance.
They are extremely stylish and available for all weather conditions. These scarves are mostly used to cover the head or slightly slit it while draping on the shoulders.
They are made of very thin, and light-weighted synthetic fabric. Very useful for summer conditions, very easy to clean and carry around. It is a high-quality fabric, breathable, and comfy in wearing. Drape it on your body and tuck it with a belt on your waist for a dressy look or make an infinity loop in your neck for a casual look.
Ponchos are stitched and ready-to-wear scarves and they are excellent winter accessories. They come in multiple fabrics, adorned with furs, patterned with checks or lines, while colored in plenty of hues. They can go with all types of leggings, pants, and other outfits. The shape of a poncho is often squatted or cornered like a triangle.