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Five Ways to Tie a Scarf feat. DJ McDonald

November 16th, 2012

It’s officially scarf season.

Our very own reader, turned guest feature, turned friend of the team, DJ McDonald shows us five different ways to tie them.


1. The Loop Knot

The simple loop is one of the easiest and most effective knots.

How to tie it: fold the scarf in half lengthwise, drape it around your neck, and pull the two loose ends through the loop created by the fold.

You can play with the tautness of the knot, depending on the length and density of the scarf. If the ends are hanging low, try tucking them into your jacket to cover the chest.

“The big red loop not only keeps my neck warm, it also adds character to the rest of the outfit.

In case you missed the ‘Screw U’ slippers, here’s a little extra humph

  • Red scarf by Ralph Lauren ·
  • Navy double breasted blazer by Alfred Dunhill ·
  • Blue chambray shirt by Rugby Ralph Lauren ·
  • Camo cargo pants by Mark McNairy x GAP ·
  • Black “screw you” slippers by Stubbs and Wootton ·
  • Selvage pocket square by Club Monaco

2. The Neck Drape

Sometimes a scarf is more for show than warmth, and that’s okay.

By simply draping a brown herringbone scarf over his shoulders, DJ ads a texture that compliments his corduroy jacket and brings together his Fall color palette.

“Some days I want to blend-in a little without a bold statement. Using different shades of brown, I feel like this outfit represents a classic Fall aesthetic.

The turtleneck already covers my neck so the scarf is just for show…although you never know how cold it’s going to get at the end of the day.”

This is also a great example of another “in between” look.

Here DJ combines casual elements with formal ones, creating an outfit that is appropriate for a variety of occasions.

  • Tan Corduroy Blazer by Rugby RL ·
  • Navy Turtleneck by JCrew ·
  • Herringbone Scarf by a Street Vendor ·
  • Dark Green Trousers by Topman ·
  • Yellow socks by Ralph Lauren ·
  • Tan Suede Tassel Loafers by Alden

3. Ascot Body Warmer

“This vintage wool scarf is narrow and thin enough to double as a winter ascot. Tying it like this not only protects my neck and chest from the elements, it’s also a nice finishing touch for a sharp winter suit.”

How to tie it: start by draping it around the back of the neck. In front, criss-cross and pull the two ends like the first part of tying your shoes. From there, it’s all about adjusting it so that the top layer drapes straight up and over the bottom one.

If the ends are a little long, tuck them into the shirt to keep your torso warm with a clean neckline.

“The pocket square was cut from from an old curtain in my grandma’s house. Always nice to have something with sentimental value.”

DJ only brought one pair of socks to the shoot. They were solid yellow, and they worked with all five of his outfits.

What can we say, the guy knows a thing or two about wearing cool socks (see his feature here).


Blue Bengal Stripe Oxford Shirt

4. The Once Around

Another easy one. The once-around can be worn different ways, depending on how tight you pull it.

I love how DJ keeps it tight around the chin and buttoned into the jacket, a great way to break the chill.

“This scarf has belonged to my dad for years. It’s a beefy, super-soft 100% Alpaca.

If your walking into a snow storm, wrap this thing around your neck and face and you’ll be in a better mood.”

Tweed jacket, oxford shirt, cords, bean boots. It’s all about the classics.

Also, I love DJ’s use of color here. Fall/Winter outfits don’t have to be dark and boring.

  • Alpaca scarf by Hickey Freeman ·
  • Brown tweed blazer by Rugby Ralph Lauren ·
  • Pink oxford shirt by Rugby Ralph Lauren ·
  • Yellow corduroy pants by Rugby Ralph Lauren ·
  • Brown moccasins by LL Bean

5. The Low Twist

In my opinion, this is one of the strongest looks we’ve featured on Articles of Style.

The ganster stripe suit was going so hard that during the shoot several Brooklynites stopped DJ in the street just to comment on how cool he looked.

The loose twist is an easy, nonchalant way to ad a scarf to your look. Here, the solid navy cashmere breaks up the strong pattern of the suit and ads an element of effortlessness.

For clarity’s sake, this is essentially the same method as the “ascot” in look 3, just with a larger scarf and looser knot.

So where do you keep it when you’re not wearing it?

Folded, hanging out of your jacket pocket (if you’re not carrying a bag).


Hairline Stripe Worsted Suit in Navy

  • Off-White Beanie by Billy Reid ·
  • Tortoishell shades Vintage ·
  • White striped shirt from Rugby Ralph Lauren ·
  • Navy knit tie by J.Crew ·
  • Tie Clip by TheTieBar ·
  • White pocket square by Club Monaco ·
  • Navy cashmere scarf Vintage by DIor ·
  • Yellow socks by Ralph Lauren ·
  • Black/white saddle shoes by Florsheim
  • · Navy double breasted pinstripe suit from Bespoke by Beckenstein

Thanks, as always, for reading and special thanks to DJ for participating!

Yours in style,

Dan Trepanier


Photography by Alex Crawford