If you ask me, scarves are a girl's best friend (after diamonds of course). They are truly a versatile fashion accessory! They can add the finishing touch to a cocktail dress or add a snazzy and lively vibe to an otherwise unexciting outfit. I even make sure to pack one on my travels as it helps me keep warm on those chilly planes.
Believed to have its origins with the Romans, the scarf was originally used by men as a "sweat cloth" - to keep dry in the hot and humid weather. Later during the reign of the Chinese Emperor Cheng, scarves were used to identify officers or the rank of Chinese warriors. But today, it has become a fashion staple in every woman’s wardrobe, given the fact that there is a different scarf for every season and you can style them in a hundred different ways. (If you like experimenting with a scarf try wearing it in your hair like a bandana, knot it on your bag, fashion it as a belt or experiment different creative combinations to wear it around your neck by twisting, tying, looping or draping!)
While I was looking online for scarves to gift to a dear friend, I stumbled upon Mayil Scraves. Mayil is Madavi Oliver's brain child. Madavi an engineer with a Masters degrees in Electrical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering, followed by many years of Research at Harvard School of Public Health. In 2009 when Madavi decided to take a year's sabbatical, her heart led her to her ancestry of silk weaving. Completely enchanted by her new found love for fabrics, colors and textures she decided to follow the family tradition and started Mayil.
Let’s hear the story of Mayil from Madavi herself, “I grew up surrounded by the colors, fabrics and traditions of India. I come from a family of weavers. My cousin (Shanthi) still weaves exquisite silk sarees - one at a time. My great grandfather owned a silk saree shop (javuli kadai) in Nagercoil (southern India). I love the feel of fabric and it flows in me. Recently I decided to take the plunge and said "Goodbye Engineering - Hello Scarves"
And if you are wondering how the name Mayil came about, she anwers that too, “Mayil means peacock in Tamil (spoken in southern India, one of the oldest surviving classical languages). Like feathers of the peacock, Mayil scarves are a kaleidoscope of colors. 18th century tailors were known to use the peacock feather as a symbol for their fine fabric creations. Add a splash of color, peacock style - be it the jewel tones of ruby red, emerald green and sapphire blue; the spice colors of turmeric, saffron, cinnamon and clove; the soft shades of jasmine and rose; or the metallic zari and shimmering sequins."
Based in Massachusetts (USA), Madavi travels to India often, to source her fabrics. Madavi thoroughly enjoys scouring the Indian textile markets for gorgeous fabrics like cotton, silk and chiffon and georgette to name a few. The jewel toned scarves range from tie&dyes, block prints of Rajasthan and Andra Pradesh, Kantha embroidery, to sequined work and tasseled beauties.These fabrics are then transformed by a group of women artisans from her rural village (back in India) who put the finishing touches on the scarves.
Mayil's latest collection combines silk of Tamil Nadu, block prints of Andhra Pradesh and Kantha work of Bengal. Traditional block print designs have been made more elegant with kantha needlework outlining the block patterns. It doesn't get any better than this for a textile junkie does it? To pick yours today, order via Mayil's Etsy shop, Mayilscarves.com or their FB page.
Image Copyright/ Credit : Mayil
Image Copyright/ Credit : Mayil