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Winter Scarves

Winter scarves play a big part in your winter wardrobe. Keeping the cold at bay around your throat and neck really depends on wearing a warm winter scarf.

For such a simple winter accessory, it has a big impact on your winter comfort. Even when wearing a winter coat, having your neck exposed to the winter elements won't prevent the cold from seeping inside so it's best to bundle up.

Winter scarves are a practical shape, usually a long rectangle shape because you want to be able to wrap it around your neck to keep the cold air out. With a long enough scarf, you can wrap it around twice and have the ends dangling in front. For another kind of look, smooth, silky polyesters and silks scarves add a touch of elegance to your winter outfit.

Winter Scarves for warmth

The best fabrics are fleece, blends and soft wools like Cashmere. These types of scarves are thin, soft, feel very cosy and comfortable around your neck.

Wool scarves using the more traditional type wool tend to be thicker and when wrapped around your neck, can really itch. However, it will be very warm.

Velvet, Chenille, and the new acrylic and polyester blended yarns are less abrasive but work well if you want to add some warmth but not too much. Some scarves have a fake fur trim or the real thing on the ends of the scarf if that appeals to you.

If being warm is your ultimate goal then you may prefer to add some bulk especially for really cold days. You'll be dressing according to what the weather is like outside so you'll choose whatever is going to work best for you that day.

Scarves for more style than warmth

Handmade winter scarves using the fun yarns currently available adds some cache to your winter coat and jacket. These new acrylic yarns come in wonderful colours and textures often incorporating other textures like ribbon and fabric wisps that make a fun statement about your winter clothing style.

Winter silk scarves and poly-blend scarves are usually boldly patterned with bright, vibrant colours. Just seeing them all hanging in stores is a colour therapy treat to savour. They are generally square or rectangular and can be in different sizes and lengths. These smooth fabrics are ideal for having something nice and soft against your skin but still add a barrier against cold winds or snow.

Buying a winter scarf

Here are some factors to consider when you are buying a new scarf:

  • Is it specific to match a coat or jacket?
  • What kind of fabric do you want?
  • How warm to do want the scarf to be?
  • How many times do you want to wrap it around your neck?
  • Can it easily be cleaned or repaired if necessary?
  • How long do you want it to last? (i.e. better quality to last longer)
  • What's your budget?

How to wear long winter scarves

Heres the most popular and common way to wear a long winter scarf.

Once around your neck:

  • Wrap the scarf around your neck a least once with one or both ends in the front works the best. You can just cross the ends in front but still be under your coat lapel with a shorter type of scarf. This is more traditional style to wear a scarf.

Twice around your neck:

  • You can try but might be too bulky to tuck inside your coat over top of everything if it's a thick-textured scarf. Just let the scarf ends hang outside your coat. These types of scarves can be very long and so lend themselves to this style. Even so, a little cold air might come in so bunch up the material to prevent this from happening.

Organizing your winter scarves

I find the best way is to match them to the coat or jacket it goes with. That way you'll actually find them! Just wrap it around the top of the coat hanger or do a loose knot so it won't slip off. If you have a lot them, you can get an organizer device, much like a tie rack for men where it hangs like a coat rack inside your closet.

Reinventing an old winter scarf

After a few winters, you may end up with lots of scarves that you don't wear anymore for lots of reasons. One way to spruce up a scarf is by adding some embellishments to it.

There is an endless variety to choose from like small silk flowers, buttons, broaches, feathers, ribbon, material - really anything that catches your eye. Just remember to be careful when washing or dry cleaning your scarf with these embellishments as they may not survive well. If you can, make sure whatever you add to it can be removed temporarily from the scarf before washing or cleaning it.

What to do with too many no longer loved scarves?

Now if you are really tired of having too many scarves (or hats, gloves for that matter) arrange a scarf-swapping event with your family and friends. You know it will go to a good home. If you are knitting-inclined, you can rework the yarn into something new. Or as a last resort, donate it or pass it on to a non-profit organization.

Other winter shawls, wraps and pashminas

If you want a wider type scarf to keep warm around your neck then you can buy shawls, pashminas and wraps.

Caring for your scarves

The type of material used will dictate how you need to clean and care for your various scarves. Be sure to follow what's recommended on the garment's label. If you're not sure, hand-wash with a gentle clothes soap is usually the default then air-dry it but if it says to dry-clean it, then do that instead.

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