For the un-rebellious, scarves are merely a means to stay warm or cover up any exposed bits that might make boys gawk at you inappropriately. But for the rebellious – i.e. those of us who don’t accept an accessory for its intended purpose – scarves are the easiest way to elevate an otherwise boring #OOTD that would probably only get you a few likes on Instagram and definitely no comments.

And why not? Scarves come in tons of shapes, prints, fabrics, its price can be reasonable depending on whether it’s “silk” or “slik”, it can look classy or edgy based on how you style it, and, most importantly, your mom will be happy that you’ll have something handy to cover your head when she surprises you with a trip to the temple.

So, in the spirit of making your mom happy because you’re probably the one she prays for at the temple, here are three different way to incorporate a scarf into your everyday attire, no matter what level of rebelling you subscribe to:


Rebellion level: Milder than the curry you would serve to a non-Indian.

What you’ll need: A monochrome base on which to build your look, a patterned scarf, a belt. Oversized hat and sunnies optional if you have a hangover and/or if you think the paparazzi is after you.

Wear it because: Besides helping to keep your scarf in place, the belt adds a polished look for when your head might not be feeling so polished from last night’s wine bender.

Bonus: Going out in public with this look – complete with scarf, hat and sunglasses – will make aunties stare and wonder if you’re a Bollywood actress. Or they will just stare at you regardless whilst trying to figure out whose daughter you are, what business your family is part of, if Ramdev is indeed your father, and what he would say that you walk around town unchaperoned.


Rebellion level: Moderate – it’s time to play with prints!

What you’ll need: A scarf (the longer the better for full boho effect), a maxi skirt. Iced coffee optional to counteract the wine bender you had yet again last night.

Wear it because: It’s hard enough getting dressed when the sun feels like one big tandoor oven, let alone managing to look somewhat cute. Tying a scarf around your head is an easy way to attain a summery boho look, with the option of using the long ends to soak up the resulting summery sweat. Take it a step further by mixing prints; here, I’ve contrasted the scarf and skirt (combining the small, busy pattern of the skirt with the larger, more subdued pattern of the scarf), and using the plain tank top as the solid base to balance it out.

Bonus: Didn’t have time to wash out that Vatika from your hair? Hide any greasy evidence with a high bun and head scarf. Plus, this outfit ensures that most of your body will be covered up so, dare I say, I think it’ll be Auntie Approved™.


Rebellion level: Somewhat higher than the B+ grades on your report card that you’ll never be able to live down.

What you’ll need: An ankle, a small square scarf with intent to tie.

Wear it because: You sprained your ankle, or just because. This look calls for the unexpected – the dramatic silhouette of the shirt, the Karl Lagerfeld-esque collar. The unusual placement of your scarf is the deciding factor that will make people believe you’re a fancy fah-shawn type. Or they’ll just think you’re weird. But who cares, you’re a rebel!

Bonus: Sure, you’re looking cool and totally ready for part three of that wine bender. But you know what’s even better? The satisfaction you’ll feel when someone inevitably says: “What are you wearing, so weird! Why can’t you be like Auntie Sheela’s daughter, she spends her time studying hard and her rotis are the roundest on the block. And look at you, only worrying about tying such nonsense on your leg.”

So there you have it, Rebels! Grab your scarves and get experimenting – you’ll never know unless you tie!

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