Fashion / Society

Meet the designers reshaping the world of accessories, one scarf at a time

By Mikko Puttonen

Photo: Beata Cervin

Paula Maso and Matilda Landhör, the designers behind Swedish brand Quinta Maso, are determined to quash the gender divide of accessories. Here is why it matters

Silk, like most material, is gender-free, yet why do some think that silk should only be worn by women? According to Paula Maso, creative director of Stockholm-based brand Quinta Maso, politics and society in modern times have played their part, resulting in the obsession to create an artificial divide of genders. “Women are soft, and men are tough – and their choice of textile should be the same,” says Maso of this artificial divide. “Just as women had to fight for their right to wear trousers, we're finally re-entering an age where clothes are just clothes, in all their glory.”


The history of silk originates in China in 4th millennium BC. Thanks to the Silk Road, it was introduced into the west several centuries later and was adored by those of high status, mostly well-off Romans who wore little else. “Royalty and upper classes, both male and female, used silk as a sign of class and opulence, and in places like India, China and Japan, silk has been used for the longest time to create stunning traditional clothes for all genders,” explains Maso.

Textiles adopting gender is only a relatively modern invention and one which, thankfully, is running its course.