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Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

Whenever I travel, whether it be within the United States, to the Tropics or overseas, I always make sure to pack several scarves. Scarves are an invaluable and lightweight tool to have at your disposal.

Not only can scarves serve as a fashion accessory, but they can do double duty as a pillow in a pinch, or as a blanket in cool airplane cabins. I also like to wear a scarf outside if it’s windy, or if I need a quick head cover in a surprise rain shower.Scarves

A multi-purpose scarf should be at least five feet long.  The width is up to you.  I have scarves with differing widths, and love my pashminas as much as I do my other scarves.  Generally, I stay away from infinity scarves on vacation, only because they are not as versatile as open-ended scarves.

My favorite type of multi-purpose scarf is made with a cotton blend. Cotton is more lightweight, dries quickly, and doesn’t wrinkle as easily as other fabrics do. However, if you’re a silk devotee then go for it.  If you can’t live without your woolen pashmina, who am I to stand in your way?

If you can’t decide which scarves to bring and luggage space is at a premium, stick with neutral colors and scarves with minimal patterns. I like to pack one black and one brown scarf, because those will harmonize with most outfits. However, my favorite is an orange scarf that shades from darker to lighter orange along the length of the material. I love the little pop of color I get when I wear it. It’s lightweight enough to wear to the Caribbean, but thick enough to serve as a comfortable blanket across my chest during a long airplane ride overseas.

Want visual tips on fashionable ways to wear your scarf? Check out this helpful video provided by Nordstrom’s.