Shawls have been a part of Indian winter like spoonfuls of brandy. Both ignite our inner fires in their own wondrous ways. The humble shawl remains immortal in its appeal, beauty and warmth. According to Delhi-based blogger Naina Ruhail, a shawl or stole isn’t just about flinging them around the shoulder. Naina points out the fashion factor of these torso wraparounds, “They add a lovely finishing touch to any outfit. They can be worn for warmth or can be purely decorative or both. Stoles can also be used as headscarves.”
The Shawl Diegesis
To help you get some well-coordinated looks in place, Naina shared with us a few styling tips | She calls the first one loop and says, “This style works for both men and women. Start by draping it around your neck with one end hanging at the waist and the other end much lower. Now, wrap the longer end around the neck once and adjust, so that both ends are at the same length.” Tricky? Not once you’ve mastered it.
“This year merino wool is one of the most popular shawls, especially in navy blue and maroon.”
The next one is called the European loop | Naina loves this look, because “it works well with casual outfits. To achieve this, fold the stole in half, so you have two loose ends in one hand and a loop in the other. Wrap the stole around your neck, putting the loose ends through the loop to form a knot. Adjust it so that it sits comfortably around your neck.”
The last one is called the Infinity drape | To perfect this look, she advises to, “Place the stole around your neck and tie the loose ends together. Now twist the large loop to form a figure 8 with one loop around your neck. Toss the second loop in the 8 around your neck to finish. The end-result will be infinitely stylish.
The Stole Soul | To help you find your way with the rather submissive stole, Naina has three ideas up her cardigan-encased sleeve.
The first one includes throwing the stole on your shoulders like a wrap. This style she says “is best suited for when you are travelling, as it saves you the hassle of tying it over and over again.” Talk about keeping it together.
Second is something she calls a ‘drape-around’. According to her this is “perfect when you are headed to a dinner date as it packs in the glam factor without trying too hard.” Sexy is sexy does, we say.
She vouches for the “stole neck-tie”, which is “the most casual way of wearing it and perfect for the day.” Perfect tie for when you are the one wearing the pants. Pun intended.
About the market | The chilly winter markets will be flooded with woollen shawls, each promising more warmth, comfort and style than the next. Therefore, it pays to be informed. And who better than a famous supplier to erase all clouds of doubt? According to Mr Shezan Mukhtar Shah, of Sunbeam shawls, “This year merino wool is one of the most popular and talked about shawls, especially in its navy blue and maroon avatars.” He also added that one must “always dry clean their woollen shawls and stoles and never ever wash it in hot water.” When we asked him what he keeps in mind when he’s sourcing his stoles and shawls, he said, “Colours, design and price range”. We highly recommend that you should keep these three things in mind when making your next shawl purchase.
Now you can consider yourself ready for any chill tirade with the right kind of styling and knowledge-driven indulgence.