Rocking the perfect scarf is like wearing just the right tie: it can add the finishing touch that shows off your good taste, or it can turn an otherwise mundane outfit into a festive and fun look that’s perfect for the holidays.

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We found a bunch of great options at 45/46 in Hyde Park, Ohio, just north of Cincinnati. Manager Jim Young features many scarves by London’s Seaward & Stearn.  Most are what you might call reversible, featuring different colors/looks on each side.  Many of them sport bright colors and patterns that can hold their own with a Luchiano Visconti velvet blazer or dress up a surplus store Navy pea coat.

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There are two basic features to keep in mind when you’re hunting for a scarf – color and texture.  If you’re looking for a scarf to play ball with a tweedy blazer or cable knit sweater, opt  for a meaty weave that can stand up to the challenge.  By contrast, it’s often better to choose a finer fabric to match  a perfectly tailored blazer – think silk, merino wool or cashmere, of course.

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When it comes to color, a scarf can pull out an accent tone in a blazer.  This shaw-collared Ted Baker gray tweed jacket features a subtle orange pattern that really pops when paired with a bright orange and white scarf.

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For a busier blazer with a more pronounced pattern like this brown plaid Boss jacket, a two-toned scarf  works well – one side perfectly matches the chestnut color in the blazer, while showing off the scarf’s  deep berry side adds a dash of color and whimsy to an otherwise old-school look.

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Notice how the polka-dot scarf sports the dominant color of this Visconti velvet blazer, giving you two choices – one is more subtle with maroon used as the main color with fun, brighter dots in geranium; The other side  makes a bolder statement that still looks like it belongs,  because the blazer’s base color shows up in the dots.

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This blue and bright red paisley scarf dresses up a casual corduroy jacket  like this one by Ted Baker.  The fringe and bold red add a festive tone to a more basic blazer.

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You have a lot more choices when it comes to pairing a scarf with a winter coat.  Think about adding a brightly colored scarf, in plaid or polka dots.  Make sure to show off both sides, like the burgundy and gray polka-dotted scarf paired with this updated version of a pea coat.

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A bright orange, blue and green plaid scarf turns an otherwise mundane army green coat into a fun look ready for a tailgater or holiday party.

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Just like a tie, a well-chosen scarf can confirm your good taste, show off your dashing side, or trumpet your sense of adventure – and that’s a small price to pay for a designer accessory that can become a big weapon for a best dressed man.

Styling and Photos by Steve Oldfield

Model – Julian Klaene (45/46’s Fashion Consultant)

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