The Foulard (scarf) is a word of French origin, deriving from the term foular, or fulling, which indicates a particular manufacturing process with the aim to make
the fabric, made of silk, more resistant and compact, it is an accessory born for war purposes and subsequently used by peasants to protect themselves
from the heat. Over time many fashion companies, starting from the 1930s, began to decontextualize the foulard, enhancing its value and bringing it
to the catwalks of high fashion.
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History of the foulard
The foulard begins its history with the silk industry of Lyon, famous for its production of silk fabric paintings, very flourishing in the
XVIII century. This fashionable and popular production was taken up by Hermès around 1937, starting to spread its famous carré.
The real success of the scarf will take place in 1948 from an idea of Émile Hermès and Marcel Gandit, a skilled weaver from Lyon, who had improved the printing
system checked allowing to reproduce even the smallest details. The representations that depicted historical or satirical moments are famous; thus the union was
born between fashion and art in which several French artists will participate.
Diffusion of the foulard
But it was in the 50s and 60s that the foulard began to spread, thanks also to divas of the caliber of Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn and Jaqueline Kennedy
who spread the feminine and noble style of the scarf on the neck and tied on the chin; strictly with sunglasses.
During 70s, however, it is used in more rebellious and provocative ways such as tops or turbans, with jeans and often with ethnic styles from the famous
subculture of the hippies. The style of the foulard conquers the masses, so famous brands such as Dior, Saint Laurent, Chanel, Givenchy and in Italy Gucci
and Ferragamo started to propose it in fashion.
The foulard is not a simple accessory that lends itself to a certain function, its strength is to give elegance by adapting to different functions, a moment first it
can be a headdress, the next moment a belt, then a wrist band and then mutate again by tying it to the bag to embellish it. Being an accessory it lends itself
to all styles, always giving a chic touch. In the 50s-60s style, the foulard on the head tied to the chin with sunglasses cannot be missing; to be precise,
cat’s eyes model for a 50s style and round or drop for a 60s/70s style; to conclude a cigarette trousers.
Lovers of the 70s can recreate the hippie style by tying the foulard at the nape and pulling the flaps down the back or use it as a top, and don’t forget flared trousers
or a miniskirt. You can recreate the rock style by wearing it with a leather jacket and dungarees using the foulard as a cuff and/or using it as a belt on pants.
For a more chic style you can tie it like a tie, a trench coat and a pochette like the Chanel 2.55. To conclude the foulard it can be worn in an ethnic style,
with a kimono or caftan and worn like a pirate or with a bow around the neck.