Tuesday 5 October 2010

Sticking My Neck Out!

It is the beginning of October – so I have packed away all my thin summer clothes and got out all my thicker winter ones – including my box of thick tights and socks.

M&S purple tights I have this perverse self-imposed rule that I will not wear opaque tights between 1st April and 1st October – so I celebrated the change of seasons by wearing plum-coloured ones over the weekend!

[nb these are M&S model’s legs, not mine!]

I have a whole drawerful of scarves of various types, fabrics and colours. Most have been inherited, or given as gifts – it is very rarely that I have actually purchased one. These items of neckwear have so many different names…

ascot, bandanna, boa, cravat,

kerchief, muffler, neckerchief,

pashmina, SCARF, shawl, stole, wrap 

I look at the drawer and I feel I ought to try and wear them more often – but when I actually try to wrap the things round my neck, they slip and slither all over the place!

One scarf [from Tie Rack ] actually came with a sheet of helpful tying tips – and there are numerous websites like this one.

Basic Knots

Ascot Knot, European Loop, Fake Knot, Hollywood Knot

Neck Wrap, Square Knot, Twice Around Ascot

Why is it some women always manage to drape their scarves in an elegant and graceful manner? I went to a Clergy Wives Conference once where the two speakers were Bishop’s Wives – over 3 days, both wore various different items of neckwear with such style, that I wondered if Anglican Theological Colleges laid on special scarf training for episcopal spouses!

After spending five frustrating minutes in front of the mirror, frantically knotting and unknotting the things, during which time I have looked like a Victorian chimney sweep, a Kalashnikov wielding terrorist, Rupert Bear, Rosie the Riveter, or an elderly peasant woman, I usually give up and don’t bother with this particular fashion accessory - I cannot knot!



rupert bear rosie sacrf

peasant shawl

However, one scarf I will definitely be sporting this autumn is the brown & green ruffled Sea Lettuce one I made a couple of years ago [pattern here] The compere at the free M&S Fashion Show I attended last week said that “Ruffles are the ‘on trend’ detail this autumn” I can drape this one round my neck and it falls into ruffles very easily.


One positive result of this biannual [not biennial!] wardrobe sorting activity is the bag of garments destined for the charity shop. Stuff I don’t need can be used to help others who do need.


  1. Angela - there is absolutely no need to be modest - you are amongst friends - we know those are your very own legs !
    I still have troubles reading and read "TRUFFLES are the "on trend" detail this Autumn" Oh yum I thought - lol! Thanks for the knitting pattern reminder - I fancy trying that.

  2. Ang, there must be a Degree course somewhere? Or maybe you just have to be a Bishop's wife?

    Like you , I've been going through and sorting out, isnt it amazing what you keep under the heading of 'It might be useful one day'?

  3. Thank you for this timely post, Angela. I have been toying with the idea of clearing out my tee-shirt drawer and now you have given me the 'okay' to do it! (lol)! I have lost over two and a half stone this summer, so it's off to the charity shop again with a bagful of too-big clothes. And I particularly appreciated your comments about scarves. I, too, have friends who are so elegant with their scarves, yet I tend to look like a dumpy, little refugee when I try to wear one. Oh well, I'll have to keep practising!!

  4. Oh, I'm glad I'm not the only one who struggles with it. Even if I get a scarf hanging in the elegant way I see on others, I find I've accidentally tied my hair in it or got it caught on an earring. And they are sooo slippery.

    Plus, if you wear them to church and are 'upfront' there's the whole thing about where to attach your mic...which definitely makes the whole thing sag.

  5. I suffer constant scarf issues. Hubster has informed me only recently that my scarf looked 'not right'. Yet other women wear theirs with such aplomb.

  6. I don't see mysef as a scarf person, but when my thyroid infection forced me into scarves for comfort's sake, I ended up doing a whole post on my scarves! I find them such a nuisance, usually, and don't do the elegant look either (my mum did - she always had a great scarf on throughout my childhood). But when comfort dictates, it can be a lot of fun to wear differnt scarves!

    Thanks so much for your card, which arrived yesterday. I am really grateful you took the time, and for your encouraging words.

  7. We have ladies at church who can do the "elegant drape". The scarf seems to be floating perfectly in place (no hint of a safety pin). When I do the scarf thing I trap it in my hymn book, I fiddle with it during the sermon(should I have admitted that?)and have to hang on to it during communion because what with the altar rail, kneeling,and other people either side of me, I am afraid of an Isadora Duncan moment!
    Jane x

  8. This post obviously struck a chord with many of you! I determinedly wore a scarf for school this morning - but I had to take it off the minute I got in, as I was sure it would trail in my lunchtime soup!
    And as for the problems of scarf-wearing-in-church, that's a whole PhD thesis in itself.
    It's the thought of all those dumpy little refugees suspended by their neckwear and mic. cables from the altar rail and rood screens that tickles me!

  9. I'm with you - I can't seem to get the hang of 'elegant scarves' either. I so admire those who carry it off, and feel like such a plain Jane, but....it's who I am (we are) Blessings, Peg

  10. I'm with you on this one Angela. Scarves on me flap around, get caught up on unsuspecting children and then make me feel overheated (or is that my age!!)

  11. I like the way certain elegant people tie their scarves, but I feel claustrophobic in scarves myself. I can't breathe! I'm choking!
    When I was younger I had no idea that necks age. Sad.


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