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How to Wear a Heavy Scarf in Fall for SIA: The Guitar by Juan Gris

Salazar at 14 Shades of Grey is the curator for this round of Style Imitating Art (SIA), and she picked the painting The Guitar by the Spanish Cubist painter Juan Gris. She selected this work because she likes "the contrast between the floral motif and the strong, graphic lines, plus the colors are spot on for fall," which is so true! There are rich shades of brown, rust, gold, and green as well as black and cream...a lot of options for an autumn outfit's color scheme.


The strangest thing about the selection of this artwork, though, is that Salazar obviously read my mind. What? Let me explain. Every Saturday, I choose my outfits for the coming week, Monday to Sunday. When I'm planning outfits for an SIA week, I create the SIA outfit and plan to wear it on Monday of the SIA week, so I can take photos to send in and prepare a blog post for Wednesday.

But on Saturday, October 22, I went one step further and also put together my outfit for Monday, October 31 with the idea of wearing a work day outfit that incorporated elements of fall and Halloween (with a light touch). That meant that when Salazar published the new SIA artwork on Monday, October 24, I already had the following Monday's outfit selected. Uh-oh! I hadn't thought about it until I went to her blog to see the new artwork, but when I saw her choice, I laughed out loud realizing that my already-planned Halloween work outfit would do quite nicely for the painting she chose.

So with "work outfit, not costume" + "Halloween" + "fall colors" in mind, I picked a black skirt with a botanical print in white, yellow, gold, rust, green, olive, light blue, and pink as the basis for my outfit. I remembered there being "bugs" in the print also, which felt a little creepy and Halloween-like. It turns out those are a dragonfly (an insect that is not a "true bug," which I didn't realize was even A Thing until my husband made the distinction between beetles and true bugs in an unrelated conversation last week) and a snail (not even an insect). So...fluttery and slimy and a little Halloween-like, then?

I quickly chose a black long-sleeved T and my gold medallion necklace to wear with it. I bought this inexpensive pendant in high school for a wizard Halloween costume, so it's pretty much my magical medallion of power that always gives me Halloween vibes.

I knew I wanted to wear a scarf, and the last time I wore this skirt, I found the perfect pairing for it - this gold striped scarf with so many colors in common with the skirt's print!

From there it was just a matter of picking a topper layer, and I really wanted to try burgundy as a coordinating-but-not-matching color to go with the skirt and scarf. I have been on a bit of a burgundy/wine kick this fall, appreciating how this rich deep pink-like color looks with a variety of other autumnal colors. I had originally planned to wear black tights and mary janes with this outfit, but a warming of the weather shifted my plan to bare legs and my black studded flats instead...for which I have no complaints! I had truly thought bare leg season was behind us in Minnesota, but we are having a nice Halloween "treat" of a few days with highs in the 60s F.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40
OOTD 10/31/22

So I'd like to take a moment to talk about this scarf...which I love but that is thick, heavy, and a bit unwieldy. Here is the same scarf + skirt combo when I wore it in on a cold winter day last year, and I tied the scarf using my common "easiest DIY scarf ring from a shank button and a piece of elastic" method...and it looks really bulky! That's not necessarily a bad thing, of course, but for my SIA outfit, I didn't want this much volume from the scarf because it can overwhelm the outfit. I wanted to rein in some of that bulk so that the scarf and skirt prints were more balanced rather than the scarf being the attention-grabber like it is here (by design). As an added complication, the relatively warm weather meant that I didn't want too much of the heavy material enclosing my neck.

OOTD 2/11/21 with bulky scarf close to neck, appropriate to the freezing depths of Minnesota Winter

Luckily I had an idea! I don't recall seeing this tie before, but I'm sure other people have had the same thought before me. I just pulled the scarf out long and twisted the fabric along its entire length. Then I tied the two ends together in a simple square knot so I had a long twisted loop. I put the loop around my neck like a big fabric necklace and voila! I love how this looks...and it was very comfortable to wear on a not-very-chilly day. So that's my Halloween "trick" for styling a thick scarf for fall.

Brown T + brown jeans + olive cardigan + print scarf-Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

I finished off my accessorizing with a cat theme, starting with these cute black cat charm earrings I bought at giving-away prices after last Halloween. They're hard to see in my photo so I added the close-up view also.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40
Oops, I forgot to blot my lipstick after putting Carmex over it

I decided to make a cat charm bracelet also, so I pulled out some black beads in two sizes (they were random beads from the Fire Mountain Gems Boss's Bead Bag so I had to make do, always a good challenge) and interspersed them with silver and gold tone spacer beads. I didn't have any spooky cats in my charm stash but I thought this kitty at least has a mysterious rather than super-cute aura about it. I threaded the beads onto stretch elastic (adding a Tibetan large hole bead at the end), double knotted it, glued the knot with hypo cement, and tucked the knot into the large hole bead.

For its debut outing, I wore it with a DIY gold spacer bead bracelet, DIY mixed stone bead bracelets, DIY gold/silver spacer bead bracelet, and an olive/black bead bracelet (from a CJ Banks set). I like that both the cat earrings and the cat bracelet are in the Halloween spirit but can be worn year-round without seeming weird (like bats or spiders might). Oh, also in this photo you can see the interesting mix of textures in this thick woven scarf.

DIY glass and stone bead bracelet stack-Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

So you can see why I thought Salazar must have read my mind, right? My outfit has a lot of elements in common with The Guitar.

Now to the main event: our Rabbit Imitating Art selection! The lovely orange and grey stripes on this bunny coordinate well with the background striping of The Guitar painting, and for Halloween, I couldn't resist a rabbit who appears to be in costume. So I present this week's RIA: the Dread Pirate Harrrlequin, complete with dark eyepatch! He is believed to be a close associate of the notorious Dread Pirate Rabbits.

Japanese Harlequin Rabbit

The pirate rabbit is tenaciously guarding his prize against all comers, monitoring closely for the softest footfall of a thief who would dare attempt to loot his treasure. He stays low and attempts to blend into the background, all the easier to get the jump on any poachers.

The Guitar "improved" with rabbit

Thanks for joining me today for this Style Imitating Art + Rabbit Imitating Art post!

To see other outfit interpretations of this artwork, check out the review on 14 Shades of Grey.

Do you have any heavy/thick scarves that you find difficult to wear? Do you have a favorite way of tying them? Do you ever print mix a scarf with a skirt/pants?

Blogs I link up with are listed here.

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