Thursday, January 16, 2014

Style: Vintage Scarves and Seven Historical Ways to Wear Them

Today I am so very excited to share a post on vintage scarves with you! Scarves (both vintage and modern) are one of my favorite accessories, and I have an embarrassingly large collection.

Here is a little preview of just the vintage scarves I have in my collection. These mostly range from the 50s-70s. As you can tell, the majority of the scarves are silk and they are mostly all in little squares. I absolutely adore the range in patterns and the incredibly vibrant colors! The reds, yellows, greens, and oranges are eye-catchingly bright, plus they bring a ton of visual interest into whatever outfit they're paired with. The scarves with more traditional floral motifs even stray from that with their variety and color. Not to mention the geometric prints! The boldness of these prints make them a perfect addition to any outfit!


Now that I'm done blabbering about myself, here are seven ways to fashion scarves as seen in some of my favorite vintage eras!








1. The 1915 Front Knot:

This one is fairly simple: wrap your scarf under a collar and knot it in front of your blouse. This style comes from a brochure dating to 1915 that depicts a typical outfit for a female tennis player. I adore how her scarf ties under her collar and adds just the right amount of extra detail to her simple outfit!







2. The 1920s Head Wrap:

Fold your scarf into a triangle and then fold flat to your desired width. Wrap it around your head with both of your ends meeting under an ear and tie loosely! This is definitely a fairly scandalous image for the 1920s and unfortunately (even after 40 minutes of super internet sleuthing!) I couldn't find a solid source. I think this would look particularly nice with some sort of up do as is pictured, and is definitely a trend we don't see often enough!










This look simply requires a brooch (or hair pin!) to tie your scarf under your neck. It's a great way to bring in two different personal touches and add some color to your outfit! This photograph is showing a handmade crocheted scarf from an instructional booklet.














4. The 1937 Bow:

Pictured is Jean Muir with her scarf simply tied around her neck. The choice to spread out the extra scarf over her shoulders (rather than in front of her blouse) almost makes it resemble a bow! This scarf style is fantastic and is something I haven't seen before. This is a promotional photograph of Jean Muir published by First National Portrait (and it's for sale on eBay!).

5. The 1943 Rosie the Riveter:

Here is an example of the "Rosie the Riveter" (or Wendy the Welder!) scarf look. This one is also pretty simple: First fold your scarf into a triangle. Then wrap it around your head and over your ears and knot it a few inches back from your forehead. After you knot the scarf, pull the remaining triangle point under the knot and wrap it around - tucking it under so it stays in place! This is a classic way to keep hair out of your face while you're working and represents an important time for women!



6. The 1955 Sleep Cap:
I've included this sleep cap (as modeled by the one and only Lucille Ball) to show a variation in the "Rosie the Riveter" head scarf style (even though the sleep cap has been around for longer than the Rosie head scarf!). Here, Lucy has pushed the scarf behind her ears and knotted it about halfway back on her head with a little bow in order to show off her hairstyle!




7. The 1960s Jackie O:

Jackie Kennedy has taken the simple and turned it iconic. Simply fold your scarf into a triangle and wrap over your head, tying it loosely under your chin! This look is perfect for a windy fall day or just looking super fly in your convertible (I wish!).


I hope some of these ideas inspire you to play with your vintage scarves a bit differently than we usually see! Do you have any other styling tips for vintage scarves?

Ellen