By Remi Clary
It was minus 20 degrees in Finland when I wrote this article. If you live in a place like Nordic (and I hear the UK had their own snow this past weekend), you will understand the importance of knitwear in your wardrobe. As I have already broken down how important it is to wash knitwear properly, this time I will show you how to utilise it.
Specifically, I will be providing tips on how to tie a scarf. Some of you may already be thinking “well, that is obvious” – but having seen the majority of guys simply wrap their scarf two or three times around their neck no matter what type it might be, I couldn’t help but wonder if there is a better way to kill your style instantly during the winter.
Many guys will think only women need to tie a scarf, whilst men prove their manhood by just throwing it over themselves – however, you should already know that by paying attention to the finer details, you can take your outfits and personal style to the next level.
With this in mind, it’s time to learn how to tie a scarf correctly and expand your options when it comes to finishing off your outfits. Today I will provide you with a breakdown of some specific type of scarves currently available on the market, and then show you 6 (yes, SIX) different ways you can tie your scarves.
Note: Going forward, don’t be afraid to introduce a lighter scarf into your spring/summer outfits as well. They can be the perfect finishing touch and there are many examples suitable for warmer weather, including silk and lightweight cotton versions.
Types Of Men’s Scarves
1) Standard Scarves: Refer to most of the scarves that men typically use every day. They are made of wool, silk or cotton, rectangular in shape and generally 60 – 70 inches long and 15 – 25 inches wide.
2) Square Scarves: Originate from traditional Arab headdress, which is called a Keffiyeh. In the Arab world, it is worn by Arab men as protection from sun exposure. Square scarves became popular in the West after the wartime as many people desired the individuality they provide. Also known as a ‘Desert Scarf’, today it’s utilised as a fashion accessory for both men and women
3) Pashmina Scarves: Can also be called Pashiman shawls. Pashmina is a type of fine cashmere wool, usually found in Nepal, Pakistan or Northern India. Pashmina scarves are generally longer when compared to other types of scarves (usually about 80 inches). They are also soft and light weight in construction.
5) Aviator Scarves: Made of wool or silk, aviator scarves were worn by pilots years ago. Aviator scarves are usually white, even though some other colors have been added since they broke into the fashion world.
6) Chunky Winter Scarves: Chunky scarves come oversized and in thicker knits. They are often much longer and wider than your typical winter scarf. They can be wrapped multiple times around your neck and shoulders in order to create a real statement, and will quite obviously keep you very warm. Due to the knit, there is a lot of fabric choice, textures and construction techniques available.
How To: Tie a Scarf
So now we are going to detail exactly how you can tie a scarf. Obviously some techniques are specifically suited to individual types of scarf, but hopefully you will find a new tying technique to add to your repertoire. You never know, it could start to become a trademark of your personal style.
NOTE: The illustrations in this article are created by the author. However, ways of tying the scarves are collected from various sources.
1. The Ascot Knot
- Let the scarf fall on the back of your neck with equal length on both sides.
- Take one end of the scarf (a) and cross over the other side (b).
- Take the same end (a) and bring it up through the gap created.
- Pull through (a) and adjust until you’re satisfied.
2. The Twice Around Ascot
- Wrap one end of the scarf (a) around your neck once and back to the starting position shown in step one above.
- Take the same end (a), and create a knot in exactly the same way as The Ascot Knot (tie number 1) above.
3. The Parisian Knot
- Fold the scarf exactly in half and place the folded scarf around the back of your neck with the loop created on one side of the shoulder.
- Pull the scarf ends (a & b) through the loop created in step 1.
- Pull the scarf ends down whilst pushing the loop upwards towards the neck to tighten. Adjust until comfortable.
4. The Fake Knot
- Tie a knot with one end of the scarf (a) – it is personal preference as to how high you tie this initial knot.
- Push the other end of the scarf through the knot that you made (b through a).
- Tighten the knot until you’re satisfied with the look.
5. The Four In Hand Knot
*This style is quite complicated to illustrate. To make it easier, imagine tying your scarf as you would a regular neck tie.
- To start, drape the scarf over your neck with one end slightly longer (a) than the other (b). Place the shorter side (b) over the longer side (a).
- Bring the longer side (a) up and back across the shorter side (b).
- The longer side (a) then passes up and through the gap created (between your neck and scarf).
- Bring the longer side (a) back down through the knot and pull downwards softly to tighten.
- Adjust the scarf knot position by pulling the shorter side (b) until you’re satisfied.
6. The Tie Behind (Tie It At The Back)
Specifically for square scarves or desert scarves. This is quite a simple tie that you could use to tuck a lightweight silk scarf into your shirt (neckerchief effect) for a shot of individuality in your smart-casual outfits.
- Fold the scarf along its diagonal line.
- Make a simple knot behind your neck and adjust the front to suit.
Although tying your scarf step by step may seem complicated initially, it will soon become second nature with practise. These 6 knots are some of the most common ways to tie a scarf, and learning them all will offer you 6 different aesthetics that you can then utilise to add a touch of individuality and character to your outfit.
Your scarf can be used reinforce the look you are going for (smarter knots for a more formal outfit and vice versa) or you could pick your favourite and make it a trademark of your personal style. It is this attention to detail that will help you very subtly stand out from the masses.
Of course, I couldn’t list every single way to tie a scarf. Some of them are too common and I assume you would already know. Moreover, anyone can invent their own way of wearing one by adapting these tie techniques. There are no hard or fast rules – so experiment and have fun with it!
Now we want to know your view. Do you think there is an important style that I missed?
Feel free to let me know and share your favourite tying technique in the comments section below…