An Ode to the Mustard Yellow Scarf

Fall brings a lot of changes as a season: the leaves, the chilling temperatures and more unattainably-priced fashion trends no one can afford. This year, I stepped out of my style comfort zone in one simple way: by purchasing a mustard yellow scarf.

If I were to categorize my style, I would say it’s a healthy mix of norm core and preppy: solid colored clothing, classic A-Line fits and of course, anything with stripes. Navys and grays are the extent to which the rainbow goes in my closet. I don’t even own anything pink!  (Which excludes me from participating in a lot of things, apparently.) To find a color like mustard yellow in my closet would mean I’d have some weird sort of stain or mold problem in there.

Moreover, mustard yellow as a color is gross. There is no denying this. Even the name of it sounds reprehensible. If colors had a smell, it would probably smell like an old person. Most importantly, mustard yellow looks bad on every kind of human.

Or so I thought. But all it took was a questionably cheap $3 Primark scarf to change everything: my perspective, my beliefs and, most importantly, my outfits. It’s given me my own version of a sartorial rebellion.

What I have discovered is that mustard yellow goes with anything. Even if it doesn’t! It’s one of those things that you can just loop over your head and it gives you instant artsy cred. Tastefully not matching gives people a certain mystique and this scarf does exactly that.

Yellow + Navy

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As someone who has an abundance of navy in their closet, navy is my neutral. In my eyes, it goes well with anything. This scarf goes especially well with a navy sweater because blue and yellow are on opposite sides of the color wheel.

Yellow + Green

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Not your typical mix of colors. If anyone questions it, hit ‘em with the “I’m a Packers fan” excuse.

Scarf + Shirt + Skirt

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Wearing a scarf to keep you warm whilst wearing a skirt with your exposed legs might not be weather sensible, but it looks cute. It’s also a great way to mix up the shirt + skirt combo.

Of course, I’m not trying to get everyone in the world to go to their nearest department store and buy heaps of scarves. Everyone has their own version of a mustard yellow scarf. An article of clothing, an accessory or makeup that doesn’t exactly fall within our style parameters. Stepping out of your style comfort zone can be a good thing. Especially if part of the reason you’re staying inside is due to a lack of confidence; whether you can ‘pull something off’ or not.

It’s hard to wear what we like because we’ve developed rules for what we can and cannot wear. So many women are conditioned to believe there are places we can’t go stylistically because of our skin, our weight or any negative aspect of our appearance. So maybe red lipstick isn’t a ‘recommended’ shade for your skin. Do you like it? Wear it! It doesn’t matter if you have the correct undertones for it, or whatever new jargon the fashion industry uses to make you hate yourself. If something brings you joy, let it. It sounds like a simple philosophy, but it can be hard to follow.

Fashion can be incredibly exclusive to anyone who doesn’t adhere to the ‘right’ set of standards. As an ideal, fashion should be a true expression of self. Even if it goes against what you’re taught. Sometimes, going against the grain can be as simple as buying a $3 scarf.

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