Ready to Wear: It's a wrap

A scarf or shawl can make an outfit. Designers such as Georgina von Etzdorf, Nigel Atkinson and Carole Waller dedicate themselves to bringing us innovative fabrics and printing methods. These cost big bucks, but it is important to see glorious scarves as outfits, not just accessories. My friend wore a pounds 2,000 long black evening dress to a ball this summer with a pounds 500 shawl. No one mentioned the dress. The next week she wore it with a pounds 50 Miss Selfridge dress; no one mentioned the dress again. Moral: you can get away with a cheap dress if your shawl costs half a grand. There is something quite delicious about having a chiffon shawl slip off your shoulders to expose a curve of flesh. Sort of a cross between Little House on the Prairie and A Streetcar Named Desire.

Above: (from left to right)Sky blue short fur collar (just seen) pounds 56, made to order, Jackson tel: 0171 792 8336. Cream fake fur stole, pounds 69, Calver & Wilson, from branches of Fenwick and House of Fraser, inquiries: 0171 724 6771. Leopard print stole pounds 17.99, Accessorize, branches nationwide, tel: 0171 313 3000. Zebra print stole, pounds 69, Maison de la Fausse Fourre, from Harvey Nichols, Sloane Street, London SW1, tel: 0171 235 5000. Wild cat (fake fur) stole, pounds 49, Calver & Wilson (as before). Brown fake fur muffler, pounds 6.99, Oasis, 292 Regent Street, London W1 and branches. Inquiries: 0171 436 0474. Brown bear fake fur scarf, pounds 69 to order, Jackson (as before).

Left: silk chiffon navy stripe scarf, pounds 79, Mark Snider from Harvey Nichols as before.

photographs by rick guest

styling by carol billington

Above (from left to right): Brown crocodile velvet scarf, pounds 47 to order, Jackson tel: 0171 792 8336. Dark green rain forest scarf, pounds 95, Carole Waller from Harvey Nichols, Sloane Street, London SW1, tel: 0171 235 5000. Black, grey and pink squared scarf, pounds 80, Whistles, 27 Sloane Square, London SW1 and branches inquiries: 0171 730 9819. Brown mix velvet scarf, pounds 12.99, Oasis 292 Regent Street, London W1 and branches. Inquiries: 0171 436 0474.. Silver velvet scarf, pounds 35, Accessorize, branches nationwide, tel: 0171 313 3000. Black velvet scarf with blue rings, pounds 179, Louise Kennedy from Simpsons, 203 Piccadily, London W1. Inquiries: 0171 734 2002. Lilac squared scarf, pounds 39, Calver & Wilson from branches of Fenwick and House of Fraser, inquiries: 0171 724 6771. Brown velvet scarf with peach and red print, pounds 185, Fiona Pitkin, mail order: 0171 221 8641. Gold velvet scarf, pounds 39, Calver & Wilson as before. Swarovski crystal necklace, pounds 95, made to order, by Rowena Gill tel: 0181 987 9415.

Left (from left to right): multi-coloured wool crepe scarf, pounds 98, Wallace and Sewell from Harrods, Knightsbridge London SW1 and Liberty, Regent Street London W1. Inquiries: 0171 251 2143. Gold chenille scarf, pounds 69, Bruzzichel from Harvey Nichols, Sloane Street, London SW1, tel: 0171 235 5000. Red taffetta scarf, pounds 65, Margaret Howell, 29 Beauchamp Place, London SW3, tel: 0171 584 2462. Blue patchwork silk and chenille scarf pounds 98, Wallace & Sewell as before. Multi-striped silk scarf, pounds 130, Liberty Retail, from Liberty, Regent Street, London W1 and airport shops. Inquiries: 0171 734 1234. Bright silk striped scarf, pounds 98, Wallace & Sewell as before.

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