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Time to Turn Turtle
January 19, 2013 COMMENT comment
     
TIME TO TURN TURTLE
By Apoorva Gairola
 
 
Aturtleneck or polo neck is a garment with a closefitting, round and a high collar that folds over and covers the neck. This clever little sweater is back and in a big way. A turtleneck is versatile enough to wear throughout the chilly months and is a great piece for a chic winter fashion look. The new season ushers in the classic in many shapes and styles: From formal and form-fitting to loose and flowy. Plus, not only is the staple a way to cosy up for the cold weather but it can also be relied upon to carry you through pretty much any occasion.

Turtlenecks, also known as roll-necks, actually began as workwear garments sometime in the early 20th century. They were first worn by seamen and menial workers, for whom a scarf would be impractical and dangerous. These original turtlenecks had tube collars that were closed with buttons and then later, after their invention, zippers. When textiles advanced to more stretchable
and durable fabric blends, the buttons and zippers were forgone. Once the look became more streamlined, the middle class began to wear it. By the mid-century, they were nearly ubiquitous and worn by people who wanted to look sharp, but didn’t want to don a complete suit and tie.

WHEN & HOW TO WEAR

*
Turtlenecks are great pieces to look sharp in. Just note that they tend to emphasise the jawline prominently.

*A pencil skirt is the ultimate power piece when it comes to office wear and the perfect companion for a turtleneck sweater for work wear.

*If you want to make your turtlenecks last, then look for quality fabrics such as cashmere, merino wool blend or cotton-lycra-blend. They are less itchy and scratchy than pure wool, thereby lessening the irritation on your sensitive neck area. A sweater with some stretch will also produce a comfortable and flattering fit.

*Turtleneck or the skivvy also tends to emphasise a wide or round face shape because it shortens your neck and face, bringing attention to the shape of your face. That’s why wearing your hair in an up-do looks best with this type of sweater to help expose some more skin that makes you look leaner and sleek.

*If you have a short neck, both dark colours and neutrals similar to your skin tone can help slim and elongate your neck. One can also look into other types of turtlenecks such as cowl and mock neck as they reveal more skin and make it look longer. The other ways to create an illusion of a longer neck is to wear a long necklace that forms a deep V-shape below your chin or wear a cardigan or vest open.

*After securing it in black, add others neutrals such as beiges, whites, greys, dark blues and browns. And then solid colours like purple, red and mustard which are popular fall colours. They will keep you covered for the colder months while adding a splash of colour in the depressing weather.

WHEN NOT TO WEAR

*
A downside to chunky, woolen turtlenecks is that they are way too warm. Only wear them if you plan to be outside in the cold all day or you will find yourself taking them on and off as you enter and exit buildings or when you have been running around doing errands and chores.

*If you are blessed with a generous bust, turtlenecks are bad news. They will make you look short and stocky, and while you may assume that they hide any unsightly bulges, the truth is they actually make them more visible.

*Also, one should try to avoid turtlenecks if one has a round or wide face. But if at all you are still wearing them, pull your hair up in a ponytail and add volume to your crown. Further, wear a long pair of earrings or a long necklace to visually slim down your face shape and take away focus.

STYLE & ACCESSORISE

The boring route is to wear it with jeans or dress pants, however, there are several ways to style a turtleneck. Texture and interest help give your outfit a dash of glamour, so experiment with accessories, colours and layering. Not only does a turtleneck keep your neck area warm but it also gives you a blank palette to show off your jewellery.

A turtleneck is perfect for statement necklaces, big chunky earrings, large hair accessories, colourful scarves and also belts. If you are an office gal, you can look chic but professional with a sleek skinny leather belt wrapped around the waist of the sweater. A pearl necklace or a plain gold necklace looks very stylish with the skivvy. You might also want to look into various styles of turtleneck sweaters such as a turtleneck dress, sleeveless, short-sleeved, puffed sleeved, rib-knitted as well as prints, weaves, colours and materials.

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