The Scarf as a A Symbol of Feminine Freedom

by cweintraub on December 7, 2010

Scarves can be mysterious, glamorous, cozy, free flowing, chic, graphic or romantic and ethereal. They can evoke many aspects of the feminine experience and throughout history the scarf, especially the veil, was symbolic of the skin of the soul, protecting and highlighting the mysteries of femininity.

Empress Josephine, Salome, Marilyn Monroe, Madame Recamier were all proponents of the magic of the scarf, making it an object of seduction, the subject of paintings, the tool of magicians and a key element in many Greek tragedies.

In the Victorian age, the scarf was a symbol of modesty, but ironically, the scarf truly came into its own in the 20th Century, through artists like Sonia Delaunay and Coco Chanel. The real essence of the scarf began to emerge as artists elevated to a means of artistic expression, both in Fashion and Art. The scarf now became a symbol of the free spirit of certain women and heralded the emancipation of women from the repressive molds of society that were centuries in the making.

The 20th Century marked a new importance in the role of the scarf-Chanel, Hermes, Vera, Schiaparelli and Pucci all featured scarves in their fashion collections and the Scarf was reborn! It now became a tool of self-expression, a symbol of the slightly wild nature of women as well an expression of artistic and individualistic dressing.

Graphic designs such as our Picasso inspired silk scarf as well as our Matisse and Kandinsky silk scarves are good examples of how a graphic pattern can enhance even the simplest of clothing. The silk scarf has become, in our time, one of the strongest symbols of modern femininity and one of the simplest ways of enhancing ones wardrobe in lean times.

Orange women silk scarf in matisse pattern

Oscar Wilde is quoted as recognizing the power of patterns when he remarked. “ The repetition of patterns gives us rest. The marvels of design stir the imagination”.

So, as you can see, the scarf has become elevated to something much more than a simple piece of beautiful fabric. Click on the picture at left to see our Art-inspired scarves.

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