How to Wear a Sweater as a Scarf

Leandra Medine | November 12, 2015

As opposed to a neck scarf as a scarf. Live a little!

I’ve recently grown a violent aversion toward scarves. I do not use the word violent lightly. As a matter of fact, just last week Amelia tumbled into the office wearing the kind of scarf that temporarily paralyzes neck movement and in that moment, a pit inside my belly started to fire up and suddenly, I knew I had a moral obligation to make the paralysis more permanent. So I killed her and now she’s dead.

The end!

I’m just kidding, she is still very much alive and in fact seated to my left and picking at gray hairs at the crown of her head while attempting contact with Marie Kondo (What? We want to meet her) and my aversion really isn’t that violent but I will tell you that I just don’t like scarves anymore. They’re bulky and distract coats and look weird with cropped leather jackets which seems to be the most popular way to wear them in November and even though they’re not unnecessary, they can be avoided thanks to turtlenecks and turtleneck-laces and high collars and sweaters, so I’m avoiding them.

And when I say sweaters, by the way, what I mean is not those that you wear over your person — I mean those that you creatively repurpose as scarves. This is an idea that I stole from

a) Lucy Chadwick

b) Rosetta Getty’s Fall 2015 look book


c) Ham sandwich

Turning old sweaters into scarves is a pretty good way to recycle them without feeling like you’re forcing yourself to wear stuff you don’t want to be wearing, and using new sweaters to compliment other sweaters is a good way to express a sense of personal style that challenges the traditional ways we’re taught to keep warm, which makes the practice a metaphor for living a fulfilling life, rejecting compliance and questioning the system in pursuit of divine truth.

I’m kidding. It just looks cool. Try it. Here’s a how-to GIF.


Photographed by Krista Anna Lewis


  • streats

    YES! I have been doing this for about a year and when they see it, people either think I’m a hobo or a genius. Now I have MR style validation I can die happy.

    (Seriously though, they are perfectly shaped for the job; it’s like they are better at scarfing than actual scarves)

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  • Aydan

    Leandra, you look so chic! Obvi the sweaters are amazing, but those pants are too!!

  • mollie blackwood

    I started to really hate scarves too. They make my hair all tangled.

  • Emily

    Aaand if your arms/torso get cold, you can unwrap that lovely wrap and wear the sweater as a sweater!
    Your sunglasses are also fabulous.

  • Lucy Alimyan

    Leandra, You are so creatively stylish! I check the ManRepeller everyday to get inspired ! I’m a blogger and I’m a big fan of yours!
    P.s. my blog is

  • chouette

    I LOVE THOSE PANTS! I’ve been doing this for years, I have a beautiful cashmere floor length completely sheer, completely impractical Rag & Bone dress that makes a way better scarf than a dress. The sleeves are like bonus styling arms.

  • denamite

    And your lipstick! Love.

  • Lilibeth Garcia

    This is such a good style tip, one has to prevent looking like a UGG, Oversized sweater, leggings basic bitch this winter so thank you ever so Leandra ???

  • Emily

    Whats wrong with scarves?

  • Bella Charlwood

    One time I went on exchange to Canada and stayed with a jewish family. On my first day there I was asked what i wanted in my lunch so i just generically asked for a ham sandwich as i would at home. Oops

  • Jess

    That’s such a great idea!! Loving it.
    To get some sweaters I can recommend this $500 wardrobe contest.
    All you have to do is:
    1.) Go to:
    2.) Sign Up
    That is all it takes, so easy!

  • BadKittenOnARampge

    And wearing a sweater around your neck ISN’T bulky??? Don’t get wrong, I love the idea and the creativity, but it’s not going to replace scarves in my cold weather fashion arsenal. But – to each, their peach . . .

  • Claudia Tetreault-Percy

    I am downright doing this for my outfit tomorrow. Thanks love ya bye

  • Deb

    OOOBsessed with your glasses

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  • dogeizmeRebawn

    or u no ware it normal or evn bye a reel scarf y be stoopid 4?

  • Charlotte Dallin

    I can already hear my mum’s voice in my head…”Don’t do that, it’ll stretch the sleeves.”

  • Lua Jane

    No scarf is ever big or fluffy enough for me, so the shere volume of sweater could do the trick. Also Leandra’s lipstick combined with that coral coat on Lucy Chadwick could be great.

    • Melania Kearns

      nice post

  • Karen

    Sweaters are the new scarf! And if you get extra chilly, you can layer it on, you can’t do that with a scarf. Scarves are boring. I just need to find a sweater that has a long sleeves so it won’t choke me.

  • Stephanie

    Nice photos <3 I love the bottoms | join worldwide giveaway

  • Kandeel

    What about using scarves in any other way but a scarf? I have some colourful Pakistani shawls that make my unintentionally health goth outfits/preppy outfits look amazing worn in the weirdest ways

  • Pia Sophie

    yes times one hundred re: the sweater idea but yes, too, to that guy in my head saying “dayum those sunglasses in the GIF look like they were made for that girl in the GIF!”

  • Modne Kreacije “Afrodita”

    You look absolutely gorgeous and those Dries Van Noten pants are just amazing. I have to try this simple and creative idea of wearing a sweater around the neck 🙂

  • Kat

    I usually put my head through the hole and tie the arms around my neck:)