Korean Fashion : The Winter Scarf

The sun is gone for the evening, having gotten off of work early and the cold settles in. Not really slowly or gently but all at once without mercy or penance. Naturally as I work in an office, getting off early isn’t an option so I get off much later than the sun does. 

I wrap myself up in my scarf, put on my coat and pack up for the day. Before I leave I turn off the heater in my office (my best friend) and say goodbye to my other coworkers (who are usually few or nonexistent by this time) before leaving my cubicle for the frozen wasteland outside. 

After a ten minute bus ride and a fifteen minute train ride with colorful characters who shove around when there’s room to spare, I arrive in front of my home both weary and dreary. My inches of layers do nothing to protect against the cold and my bag feels heavier than this morning, although there’s no way this could be true. Like a hooker without a cause, I tumble up the stairs open the door and step in with a sigh of relief. Only to find that my scarf has been dragging on the floor the entire time.


Apparently there are a number of ways to tie off a scarf, some of which are quite handy if you don’t want to be the idiot on the train who’s standing on top of it. I’ve asked around and done enough research to find a few that’d be of great use to anyone who wants to keep warm and, you know… clean. All of the knots you’ll find below are unisex in that either that they can be used by either men or women.

Lets start with my favorite, the Parisian knot or the European knot. It’s relatively warm and by far the easiest one on the list. You  fold a scarf in half (cutting the length in half) and hang it off your neck. Then you insert the two loose ends through the loop and pull through. Adjust the tightness as you need and you’re done.

The Square knot is generally more for women than men but apparently Kanye’s been bringing it to our side of the court so it’s generally acceptable now. Originally it calls for a shorter scarf and of the four mentioned here it’s the least warm but apparently it’s very fashionable. Here a link to a page on how to do it for lighter thinner scarves but the end result is the same (link: click here).

Next is the angled knot, you wrap a long scarf around your neck once or twice (depending on the length). Next tie the scarf off at an angle to the side leaving the scarf relatively loose. It’s warmer than the above since you can loop it twice but it also tends to look a bit strange with coats and warmer jackets.

The last knot is the Four-in-Hand knot which is meant more for men rather than women seeing as how it is the same knot as the one used for a tie. The warmest way to tie the knot is to wrap the scarf around your neck once and then tie the knot after that.

Since this post is in line with the whole, Winter in Korea concept I didn’t include any other knots or methods as they wouldn’t be as warm. It’s always nice to experiment and I didn’t include everything out there so try some stuff out and if you find any knots that might be nicer or keep you warmer comment below.

I’d appreciate any advice on keeping warm in Korea. Thanks for reading!

How Not to Die This Winter, Part 1 : What to Wear

How Not to Die in Korea this Winter, Part 2 : Home, Sweet, [Warm] Home

Korean Fashion: The Cardigan

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