As Kate Moss has proved many times over, if there's one piece of clothing that'll have you channeling the days of rock 'n' roll yore, it's the skinny scarf. So naturally, when we heard one of Moss' go-to neckerchief suppliers, Rockins, was finally launching their unisex scarf label, we were giddy with excitement.
Rockins is the brainchild of Tim Rockins, a London-based artist, musician, and illustrator who's created visuals for the Gorillaz and commissioned artwork for the likes of Moss, Yoko Ono, Primal Scream, and more along with PR guru partner Jess Morris, who's worked with Vivienne Westwood and Agent Provocateur. The pair shared a mutual love of vintage scarves, as well as the '60s and '70s rock stars who made them iconic, and found a hole in the market for modern iterations.
Formerly, the 1920s-inspired bias cut designs were only available to those in their inner circle, like Moss, Jamie Hince, Karen Elson, and Steven Tyler. Now that they're up for grabs to the public, we're calling it: these scarves will be decorating the décolletages of even more of the who's who of fashion in no time.
To get more familiar with the just-launched brand, we caught up with Morris to learn about the design process, his vintage and modern inspirations, and how we can style our scarves a la Moss.
MC: What's the inspiration behind your tour de force styles?
Jess Morris: My mum was a collector and had a vintage clothes shop. As kids, we were trained to scour the weekend car boots and jumble sales. We were educated very early in the styles of each decade. At the time, it was all about the '20s and '30s pieces for the hippy and beatnik customers, and the '50s for the rockabillys. My dad also had a colorful wardrobe compiled entirely from second hand clothes.
MC: Could you elaborate on the historical references in your work?
JM: We use a '20s bias cut mitred shape for our skinnys as they stretch, roll, and hang nicely. It's not the most cost effective way to produce a skinny scarf, but it's what sets us apart from the rest. The '70s references come from our shared loved of music, in particular the music of the late '60s and early '70s. We are heavily influenced by our rock 'n' roll heros such as Marc Bolan, David Bowie, The Rolling Stones and many more.
MC: Why were scarves so integral to these time periods?
JM: The '70s was the decade of psychedelic enlightenment. It was a free and experimental time, which is why it produced such important new sounds. This was reflected in the clothing of the time. After the war, there was a return to romance, but a new psychedelic romance. The country was full of secondhand shops full of fantastic '20s and '30s clothes. Boutiques like Granny Takes a Trip and Biba popularized the idea of dressing flamboyantly, so it was all the rage to mix the old and new modern. Nowadays we pay a lot more for "vintage" clothing.
MC: Skinny scarves have made a real comeback over the past few years. Why do you think that is?
JM: It was a matter of time, it's quite cumbersome to have a big square around your neck and they don't work well at night. A skinny long or super skinny works with most looks.
MC: What are your favorite ways to style rock 'n'roll scarves apart from the neck?
JM: There are so many! Around a hat or hair for a festival; as a belt through jeans; through handbag loops; or even as a bra top with hotpants or jeans.
MC: Who are your favorite scarf-strewn style icons?
JM: Classic icon skinny scarf wearers are Jimmy Page, Stevie Nicks, Lori Maddox, Keith Richards, Steve Tyler, Marianne Faithfull, and Anita Pallenberg. Today's coolest dressers who love a skinny are the fabulous Miss Kate Moss and Jamie Hince.
MC: Lastly, could you tell us all your favorite ways to style scarves on the neck?
JM: Guys look effortlessly cool in a super skinny with a T-shirt, or shirt and jacket. They work from day to night. It's about an attitude — a louche, relaxed chic look.
Girls look great in skinnies too, either as a tie with a shirt, as a pussy bow, or looped once and hanging with a vest and jacket. They work with jeans and a leather jacket or a trouser suit. We love fringing, and fringed scarves look gorgeous with most eveningwear, either hanging or looped with something diaphanous or worn backwards with tails cascading behind between the shoulder blades, its all about an effortless chic or as we call it, "rock 'n' roll luxe."
Shop all the styles, priced from $115 to $383, at rockins.co.uk.