Friday, 28 September 2012

My scarves = Stories & Memories

A cheap ultrafeminine black and pink floral scarf, a rip-off blue Indian silk scarf, a Dorothy Perkins squared foulard, an animal print satin head scarf, a vintage grey burgundy arabesque neckerchief, a huge purple pom-pom trimmed foulard, a heavy Turkish woolen pashmina, a fun turquouise bandana, a translucid black long scarf, a huge deep emerald green scarf, a red triangular cashmere shawl my mother wore in a wedding... All of them are specially placed in a piece of forniture that serves as a showcase in my room. And according to what I've heard, they have become an element that makes a difference. I started buying them because I always felt my neck naked and usually got colds even in warmer seasons... so, my collection started just to cope with a need and ended up having different anchors in my mind.

When I realised about this, I started travelling too. I found out myself scouting around many places and if I ever saw a scarf, I'd get it! That's what happened in Vila Madelena. This neighborhood happens to be one the most bohemian and hipster areas in Sao Paulo: lots of art shops, cafes, clothing stores, bars, shoe shops. I was going up a very steep street when I saw this entrance like an alley into a house. I just followed the stairs and found this second-hand shop where there were many "dominatrix" accesories, old jewelry, hats and a grey burgundy arabesque neckerchief. I couldn't leave it on that manequin full of belts and whips. I left the place and continued wandering until I got lost. So, I felt thankful I got this neckerchief because I could have never come back there.

Vintage shop somewhere in Vila Madelena, Sao Paulo, Brasil
A kind of similar memory I keep about  my heavy woolen turkish pashmina. It's turquouise on one side and multicolorly striped on the other. I didn't get it in Turkey though. I got it in a city where I spent the most life-changing two years of my entire life: Liverpool, England. There I worked as a Spanish assistant. By that time, I had no idea Zara or H&M or Dorothy Perkins existed (where my first purchases were...scarves) so, I kept scouting around for new stuff: cute dresses, weird shoes, British memorabilia or the like. One afternoon I saw this place full of half-empty showcases . There were some Indian people filling them out with stuff from huge boxes. When I entered, I saw zillions of colorful pashminas and one girl took out a turquoise one.I asked her to unwrap it and there it was: huge, heavy, colorful enough to cheer up my winter afternoons. It was so beautiful I wanted another one for my mother as a Christmas present...but when I got back that very next weekend, the shop had disappeared! I still have it as one of the most memorable pieces that kept me warm and cheeerful in those dark, lonely days in Liverpool.

Sometimes, my scarves remind me of people not exactly places.
La Alhambra from the rooftop of the flat Lola rented in El Albaicín, Granada, Spain
 Lola is one the dearest Spanish friends I made in this trip to Liverpool. She ended up in my school and we traveled together to Scotland and then she invited me to Andalucia. She has a lovely family: a loving husband and two kids. Despite the fact she's married and a mother, she showed me you don't stop being yourself if you get married (which was one of the beliefs I had adopted thanks to what I had seen in my home country). We traveled together to Nejar, Cadiz, Vejer de la Frontera and Sevilla. Here we wandered through the twisted narrow streets covered with fabrics to get some shade. We found ourselves in this place completely full of scarves that seemed smuggled from Morocco a hundred years ago. There, I got my pom-pom trimmed huge purple foulard which Lola thought was too heavy to carry back home. But what she didn't know was that my heart got a lot lighter since I realised a marriage didn't mean the end of my happy life. It meant the beggining of another.

Scarves have become symbols of what I've learnt, experienced, shared or just loved.  That is why they are not kept in my wardrobe: they are more than any accessory to keep me warm or pimp a weekend t-shirt. They are my personal trademark: they represent the stories I've starred by myself and that's why they are to be wrapped around my neck.