The headscarf? This season’s unlikely style must-have

The ‘granny-scarf, aka the silk scarf is having a fashion moment

 

Beloved by Queen Elizabeth and adopted by Audrey Hepburn – the humble headscarf is having a moment. Whether it’s a sweeping style statement, a move towards modest fashion or a political appeal, covering your hair was the clearest message designers delivered for autumn on the catwalks.

There were knitted balaclavas at Calvin Klein, crowns at Dolce & Gabbana and headscarves aplenty from Gucci and Dior through to Valentino. Never in one season have we seen so many silk scarves. If not worn as accessories, they were weaved and sewn into garments. At Toga, the lining of luxurious trenches were fitted with flashes of vintage silk scarf prints, while at Salvatore Ferragamo different scarf prints were stitched together in the form of elegant dresses.

An unlikely must-have accessory for this season, headscarves are one of the oldest female accoutrements, with a retro flair rarely seen on the catwalk.

Silk Scarf, €150, Susanna Grogan, Brown Thomas
Silk Scarf, €150, Susanna Grogan, Brown Thomas

Rejected by the fashion set for airing on the side of preppy, it was only the silk skinny scarf that made an, albeit, brief appearance on the Saint Laurent catwalks and, most notably, Kate Moss.

The “granny-scarf”, aka the silk printed scarf - has now pinged back to high-fashion status, imbuing the wearer’s outfit with a modern sense of glamour and nostalgia. Richard Quinn, who showed his elaborate designs at Create at Brown Thomas, not only had the original scarf-wearer, the queen, front row at his fashion show in London, but he presented all manner of royal-inspired paisley-print headscarves.

Silk Scarf, €130, Ciara Silke
Silk Scarf, €130, Ciara Silke

Offering an uplifting hit of colour and bold design, the demand is about to surge as the headscarf is on the brink of a fashion renaissance. There’s nothing old-ladyish about this season’s gorgeous offerings that add a pop of personality to a more pared-back outfit. For a more contemporary take on the classic, look to Irish designers like Ciara Silke, Susanna Grogan, or Debbie Millington- whose tropical prints incorporating zebras, bananas and parrots are all inspired by her travels to the Serengeti in Africa.

Be careful how you choose to knot your scarf. The style set who swarmed international fashion weeks anchored theirs to their glossy ponytails, while others replaced statement necklaces with loosely tied printed confections. On the catwalks they favoured the under-the-chin style which might not be as easy to wear in real life.

Instead, try tying a silk scarf around your neck and tuck it into a collared shirt for a chic, and practical approach.

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