8 Gorgeous Ways to Style Your Winter Scarf

Scarves are much more than purely functional pieces of clothing, as they can serve many purposes beyond keeping your neck warm. Scarves are accessories, able to complete an outfit. They come in every imaginable material, color, texture, and length, so you’ll never be starved for choice. To make the most of your favorite scarf, the trick is to make sure it’s styled well — and that you have plenty of options. Check out these highly effective ways to style your scarf.

1. Draped over one shoulder

Olga Sorokina attends the Jaeger-LeCoultre Place Vendome Boutique
Olga Sorokina showcases this look. | Kristy Sparow/Getty Images

This method of styling your scarf screams high fashion. It’s fierce and flashy, and while wearing it, you might even feel like a Kardashian (if only momentarily). The key to nailing this style is to ensure you’re properly equipped; silk scarves or wool scarves with fringed ends won’t work very well. The best options for this look are furry scarves (you can decide whether you’re more comfortable with faux or the real thing) or any scarves that are short and quilted. If you’re worried about it slipping off your body, keep your purse strap on that shoulder to weigh it down, or secure the scarf under a thin belt.

2. Halfway wrapped around

Raquel Viejo is wearing a Natura dress
This scarf style gives you an effortless look. | Miquel Benitez/Getty Images

This casual look is not only incredibly mod, it’s also one of the easiest styles to achieve on the go. You can simply throw one end of the scarf over your shoulder without skipping a beat. Just make sure you don’t wrap it around your neck too tightly — this style looks best when nonchalantly draped.

3. As a poncho

Girl wrapped in a blanket sitting and working
Who say it has to go around your neck? | iStock.com/Kladyk

On mild autumn days, you may be torn between deciding whether or not to layer with a sweater. Fortunately, a heavy wool scarf provides the perfect alternative. If it gets cold, use your thick scarf as a poncho by laying it flat and wrapping it around your shoulders. If it gets too warm, simply loop it back around your neck, and voila! 

4. Once knotted at the neck

Model Maria Vvedenskaya walks the runway at the Anja Gockel show
This works best with thin scarves. | Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Silk scarves have little utility in terms of keeping you warm, but they have maximum value as chic accessories. To take your outfit to the next level, tie a silk scarf in a knot at the front of your neck. If you’re trying this out, it’s best to keep your outfit minimal, and confine all bright colors and busy patterns to the scarf. Or, try the opposite by keeping your scarf minimal with a busier outfit. Simply let the scarf cascade down the front of your blouse and it’ll do all the work for you.

5. Around your shoulders

Maria Luisa Valdivieso wears Zara pants
Try this fun scarf style. | Alberto Alcocer/Getty Images

This preppy look is a cool, youthful take on wrapping a cashmere sweater around your neck. Instead of going for the overtly Nantucket look of a pink polo sweater, wrap a scarf around your shoulders instead. It’ll keep you cozy and still looks elegant, but without sending off obnoxious “I come from old money” vibes.

6. Belted

A model walks the runway wearing Desigual Fall 2016
A model walks a runway with a belted scarf. | Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

By belting a chunkier scarf, you can achieve an added layer of warmth beneath your coat. However, belting your scarf this way can be fun during spring as well. Wear a solid color dress, then fasten a bright floral scarf beneath a thin, white belt. It’ll be the perfect weekend look no matter where you’re headed.

7. Double-knotted

Ayu Ananto poses wearing a Max Mara coat, COS pants, Proenza Schouler shoes and Acne bag
This look is both warm and chic. | Vanni Bassetti/Getty Images

By double-knotting a fringed scarf, you can essentially reap the benefits of a statement necklace with some added warmth around your neck. This trick works best with a short scarf made of thick material. Silk most likely won’t stay put. Give it a try the next time you’re deciding how to elevate your winter wardrobe.

8. As a purse accessory

A bag is pictured as a model walks the runway
This is probably the simplest way to up your style game. | Andreas Rentz/Getty Images

This fashionable method of styling your scarf is one of the quickest ways to amplify your look. Silk scarves look upscale and are attention-grabbing, so if you want to make your handbag look more luxurious (or you actually want to draw attention to its designer label), tie a silk scarf around one strap. Your bag will definitely turn heads with this colorful addition!