I am such a sucker for a man in a scarf! Ok the guy in the picture above, looks like he might be wearing half a table cloth around his neck,(yet I admire his self-confidence!) but scarves, on the whole, are just so... so sexy on men!!! And hey they make great Christmas Pressies! There's something special about knitting a scarf for the man in your life. (I took it one step further some years ago, by knitting a bottle green fisherman's ribbed sweater for mine, which he wore for many years, inspite of the fact, that one sleeve was noticeably longer than the other. Now that's what I call REAL love ... the fact that he wore it at all!!!) Taking a scarf and wrapping it around the neck of the man you love, like shaving him or putting on his tie or cravat is an incredibly sensual ritual. A thrill, that quite possibly, emanates from a mutual eye contact; being close enough to touch ... yet NOT!
For some baffling reason, I associate scarves with brains, creativity and a lower tolerance for trivia. A corduroy or tweed jacket teamed up with a carelessly slung scarf is definitely the ultimate in bohemian chic! A finely-knit, white scarf worn with evening wear for an opening night, emits an air of informality, whilst maintaining a sense of occasion. Scarves can soften the neck and shoulder line of even the most robustly-built rugby player.
I wear scarves all year round, sometimes two at a time, if I can't decide between one or another. Why not? There are no rules! I have always been fascinated by fabrics, colours, clothes-layering, and matching up 'feminine' with 'masculine' eg. lace and silk, with Doc Marten boots! Visiting India to watch the cotton and silk dying process is on my 'to do before I die list'. I love how they break so-called colour co-ordinative rules, in their expression of such exuberance!
Back to scarves. I remember my mother telling me that when we were babies, she couldn't afford to buy clothes, but would push the pram into Crewe town to visit the Friday Market and, finances permitting, she might buy a new scarf to brighten up an old outfit. My mother was fairly nifty with the sewing machine and created her own suits (costumes, as they were called back in the 1940's and 50's) and often made trousers for my father. Crewe Market is presently being revamped, so too is the Queen's Park. Both places, an integral part of my youth, hold a very special magic. During my visits home over the years, I would always make a beeline for a stall on the market that sold remants of lace, ribbons, binding, buttons etc. for a pittance. Once home, and spilt from their bag, my eyes marvelled at this treasure trove of textures and colours, and savoured them individually, as if precious gems.
As is my wont, my love of scarves led me to thinking about the neck, and its 'precious' significances.
Being a supremely erogenous area, the neck has an endless supply of romantic conotations. The fastening of a necklace, perhaps a gift, by one's lover; the wrapping of arms around lovers' necks; the kissing of a lover's neck are but three examples.
The neck area is also associated with punishment and death: legitimate (and I would question whether any capital punishment is legitimate!) and otherwise; such as death by hanging, guillotine, slitting of the throat, strangling etc. Because the neck houses mechanisms that allow us to eat, breathe and utter WHO WE ARE, these punishments are the ultimate humiliation!
There are countless tribal rituals associated with the neck, such as those in Burma and Africa. The Karens are a large ethnic group spread throughout Southeast Asia. They trace their origins to the Gobi Desert, Mongolia, or Tibet. Karens settled in southern and eastern Myanmar as far back as the seventh century. (Myanmar was known as Burma until 1990, when the military government changed the country name.) A Karen subgroup, the Kayan, are known for the neck rings made of brass worn by girls and women. Over time, more and more coils are added to the rings, pushing the collarbone down, giving the appearance of an elongated neck (hence their Burmese name, Padaung, meaning "longneck"). The Kayan subgroup of Karen is traditionally a matriarchy. The rings around necks, arms, and knees are sometimes explained as a traditional protection against tiger bites. Many Kayans have become refugees in recent years, and women with neck rings have been exploited as "freak show" tourist attractions in Thailand and Myanmar.
Beads played a huge part in marking the stages of a woman's life in Africa. When a young girl reached puberty, this was a time for celebration; a time to marry and bear children. She would make a skirt from beads which was meant to adorn and attract possible suitors. Even after the girl was married, she would wear a string of beads around her waist, which she would 'rattle' for her husband's attentions. In Zambia, if a woman wore the string of waist beads around her neck, she was perceived as having loose morals.
Couldn't talk about the neck, without referring to the book Dracula created by Bram Stoker in 1897, where we are introduced to the idea that a wreath of garlic worn around the neck, would ward off any attempt by Dracula, a vampire, to sink his fangs into the necks of poor unsuspecting, normally, white female necks. (My very very favourite dracula movie, being the 1992 Dracula starring Gary Oldman, Winona Ryder, Anthony Hopkins and directed by Francis Ford Coppola. Beautiful cinematography and stunning costumes. First time I felt sympathetic towards Dracula, played by the magnificent Gary Oldman!)
So all in all, the neck is a rather fascinating, precious part of our body! Back to scarves!
SCARVES make windows look great!!!
And yes, almost forgot ... scarves will also keep us WARM during this period of arctic weather!
Wrapping a scarf gently around the necks our lovers or partners, our parents, our children, our friends, is a wonderful non-cliched way of saying, 'I LOVE YOU'!
But back to basic, animalistic laws of attraction !!!
MEN IN SCARVES ... SO ... SO ... SEXY !!!
Ciao for now!