Do you sometimes read something in a book and before you know it you want to investigate and learn more about it? As I finished John Baxter’s book The Most Beautiful Walk In The World, I resolved to research more on two very unrelated topics. After Baxter described the literary tour he gave some tourists as they strolled down Saint-Germain, I decided I had to read Morley Callaghan’s, Ernest Hemingway’s and Sylvia Beach’s memoirs about their time in Paris during the 1920s. I will write about those three memoirs another day.
The second topic I wanted to pursue is a result of Baxter’s simple description of an acquaintance: “His grubby sweater, baggy cords, and hand-knitted scarf fit right in. Ignoring the Paris tradition of scarfmanship, in which the way you wrapped, looped, hung, or draped the thing conveyed subtle hints about your character, profession and sexual orientation, he wore both ends tucked down the front of the sweater, possibly the least attractive style short of a hangman’s knot.
My daughter and daughter-in-law often look so chic when they wrap their scarves artistically around their necks over a simple tunic or sweater. I tend to wear scarves only for warmth on our cold winter days rather than for style. One major restriction for me is that I have menopausal heat moments so the scarf needs to be light and airy! Perhaps with a hidden icepack! Anyways, I just finished watching a fun video on youtube where the woman demonstrates 25 ways of wearing a scarf in 4 1/2 minutes. Well over 11 million people have viewed this video and apparently, it is the the number 1 view of Fashion videos of 2011! I learned that of the two simple variations I use when I do wear a scarf, one of them is called the European Loop! At least I know one method that will be appropriate in Paris!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5LYAEz777AU
As I pursued this topic of Scarfmanship in Paris, I found a lovely blog where Carol Gillott has taken photos to depict the French passion for scarves: http://parisbreakfasts.blogspot.com/2012/01/french-scarf.html. She writes, “Does your average French person leave the house without wearing a scarf? I doubt it.” When my daughter-in-law who is in the above photo was in New York, she returned with a beautiful green pashmina scarf for me. I think it is time to take it out of the closet and sit for 4 1/2 minutes and see how many ways I can learn to wrap this around my neck!