The motorcycle scarf: America in the 1920s and 1930s represented an era of exploration and change for many of its citizens. This attitude of exploration and discovery can be seen in the popularity of professional pilot Amelia Earhart, who grew to fame during that time. Wearing her white aviator (motorcycle) scarf, goggles and leather hat, she gave hope to the women of that time… going beyond the stereotypical image of a stay-at-home wife. Today, many women like to pay homage to these roaring twenties and thirties by wearing the fashion of that time, now considered as vintage fashion. Indeed, there is something quite classy and feminine about the aviator – motorcycle silk scarf, the very same scarf Amelia Earhart wore decades ago.
This fashion statement has a distinctive appearance. It usually comes in white or black, is made of silk and some styles have unique tassels on each end. This scarf was traditionally worn as protection for pilots and motorcycle riders, but eventually evolved to become a fashion icon. Silk was commonly chosen as the fabric because of its soft and non-chafing attributes. It matches exquisitely with leather jackets and other brown-hued clothing pieces. Ideally, the scarf should be around 6 feet length since you will need to loop this several times around the neck when worn. This helps reduce chafing as well and keeps the wind from going inside the jacket.
How do you tie an aviator – motorcycle scarf? Tying is not as simple and as straightforward as it seems. You may think of simply tying this as you would with any other scarf, such as by draping it once around your neck, or looping it once for a breezy effect. However, these styles can be quite dangerous, especially when you plan to fly or ride an actual plane or your bike wearing the scarf. Strong gusts of wind, coupled with nearby plane engines, can easily pull your scarf forward and backward in unpredictable ways. This produces the danger of strangulation or even dropping the scarf while on flight. This could even cover your face and prevent you from flying effectively.
Here are some steps on how to tie this type of scarf securely:
Aviator scarves should be securely fastened to prevent danger. Start by placing the scarf around your neck. Drape both ends on your chest and make sure that one end is slightly longer than the other. Take the long end of the scarf and pull it diagonally. Pull the shorter end to the opposite side.
Insert the long end into the loop formed around your neck. Pull this long end upward and eventually lay it to rest on one side of your shoulder. Repeat this process – take the long end again and insert it once more into the loop. This serves as added security, making sure that your scarf cannot easily be untied. You now have a knot at the base of your neck. Tighten or loosen it, making sure it is comfortable on your neck. A loose knot may be physically appealing but can become a functional nightmare when you are flying a plane.
Take the top end and spread it as much as you can, to create an illusion of size. You now have a large scarf positioned at the center of your chest, very similar to a cravat. Wear a leather jacket or other heavy jacket. You can zip it up so that only the top part of the scarf is shown. This secures your scarf in place and prevents it from billowing unexpectedly during flight.
Following the steps above, you are now on your way to looking like a professional aviator from the 1920s and yet vintage and chic at the same time.