ACCESSORIES REPORT: The Iconic Headscarf

Hair can really be so boring. There are essentially three options for young women: up, down and half-up/half-down. Then, of course, some people try to be more creative and go with a braid or some type of fancy up-do. But lets be honest, who has the time to maintain the mane? After all, we are such busy college girls! Before we give up on our luscious locks though, we should at least consider one last option: adding a simple accessory like a headscarf!

As Bali Barret, the art director of Hermes silks aptly said, “ the headscarf is intimate, personal, an accessory you have a relationship with, in the way a woman doesn't even have with a pair of shoes.” It is clear that this is a sentiment shared by some of the most prominent style icons such as Audrey Hepburn, Jackie Onassis Kennedy and even Lucille Ball. These legendary Fashionistas understood the necessity and versatility of the accessory. It is not only multipurpose in the way it can be tied, wrapped and positioned, but the headscarf is also an interesting piece in that it can both tempt the eye and create a look of modesty.

The Fashionista I saw lounging on Barnard’s lush campus was confidently rockin’ the headscarf, which immediately drew my attention. While you do see many fashionable people walking around school, not many people are bold enough to start styling from the top down, beginning with their head. As you can see in the photo, she wears the accessory in more of the Lucille Ball way with her hair pulled up in a bun and the colorful, patterned scarf tied in a bow on the side of her head. She continues the old Hollywood glamour look with her big, round sunglasses and dangling cameo necklace.

Although we can look at the long history of the accessory, and the great women of the past who wore it, it’s important to note the way it has been incorporated into the contemporary discourse of styling by current celebrities. We can follow Blake Lively’s stylistic interpretation: she tied a thin, silk scarf as a headband and let her natural, wavy hair down. Nicole Richie followed a similar approach, but covered the top of her forehead through the back of her hair in a chic “bandana” style. As for J.Lo, she took a wide and stretchy scarf and used it to create a scarf-bun look. She wrapped it around her head and twisted it over her low bun. As you can see, there is a plethora of ways to wear the headscarf in order to make a fashion statement. The next time you have a spare minute, I recommend you give it this accessory a try — you’ll be surprised by the positive results!

Spotted: Statement hair accessories were found on the Vanessa Bruna fall 2011 runway.

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