How to stay on trend this summer but look classically chic? Simply wear silk
31st Jul 2019
Silk scarves have been a fashion favourite for decades – think Audrey Hepburn, Jackie O, Grace Kelly and Brigitte Bardot. Here’s how to wear yours this summer, and a few other interesting ways to incorporate this luxe fabric into your wardrobe.
There’s nothing new about silk scarves, which is funny, because they feel so very current.
While the slinky accessory was spotted during several SS19 shows in various guises, they actually date back to 350 BC, when they were worn by Egyptian queens as headdresses. Throughout history, versatile square pieces of fabric have been utilised by individuals in all walks of life – from Roman men (who used them as ‘sweat cloths’) to Chinese emperors, Croatian soldiers and ultimately by the fashion forward trend setters of the 20th century.
Search silk scarves on Pinterest and you may have a hard time discerning which images are the ones from a bygone era, and which are from the catwalks a mere few months ago.
From Audrey Hepburn and Jackie O to Bianca Jagger and Brigitte Bardot – and, of course, Grace Kelly who wrapped her cast in a silk scarf when she broke her arm in 1956 – photographs of these revered style stars in their silk scarves have an endearing glamor that still compels designers to channel their energy.
“Beyond the catwalks, silk scarves have been a staple on Instagram this summer; perhaps due to Millennials’ obsession with reviving retro trends.”
Bringing it back to the present, at Michael Kors, the eponymous designer went the matchy-matchy route with 1960s-esque floral headscarves paired with dresses in the same print. At Burberry, Riccardo Tisci put a heightened focus on silk scarves baring the house’s new logo.
These creative directors followed the likes of Demna Gvasalia, Dries Van Noten, Richard Quinn and Donatella Versace, who had kickstarted the resurgence the previous season.
Beyond the catwalks, silk scarves have been a staple on Instagram this summer; perhaps due to Millennials’ obsession with reviving retro trends. Before I head off down the rabbit hole of silk scarf tying tutorials on YouTube, here’s some other silk trends that have caught my eye.
Popularised by Budapest’s coolest label Nanushka and Milan-based handbag designer Emily Levine, petite, handheld silk bags are the archetypal summer bag, infusing a vintage aesthetic with a dash of globetrotter luxe.
Plus, who doesn’t love an accessory that looks like a yummy little dumpling?
Micro Inda bag, €150 at Nanushka.com
Sari Dumpling bag, €160 at EmilyLevineMilan.com
Handmade mini bags, €103 at Etsy.com
Ascot satin clutch, The Row, €905 at MyTheresa.com
Silk scarf tops
Meet the summer wardrobe must-have: these versatile squares have more uses than a bottle of Dettol around the house.
Scarf, €6.60 at Amazon.co.uk
Dreams scarf, €230 at IkaParis.com
Snake print scarf, €45 at Anthropologie.com
Printed twill scarf by Gucci, €350 from NetAPorter.com
Think 1970s roller disco girl, rather than Bridget Jones’ doomed trip to the countryside in Daniel Cleaver’s convertible.
Hair’s a Mess headscarf, €7.17 at FashionNova.com
Tres Kelly scarf by Hermes, €180.18 from TheRealReal.com
Read more: 11 festival fashion favourites from a first timer
Read more: Weekend street style inspiration – whatever the weather brings
Read more: How team IMAGE styles the polka dot dress
Long-awaited brighter days call for a refresh of our perennial favourite – denim. As we head out into the spring sunshine, our mood this season is ready to play, with sporty silhouettes and a relaxed vibe.