Pattern Play: Bandana

When you think of bandanas, you might think of heavy metal, pirates, hippies, or just another 90’s trend – but the bandana is so much more. The print has a long and prominent history through a number of cultures across the world. Over the years, we’ve seen it in back pockets, on heads and necks, and as of recently, embedded in ready-to-wear styles worn by celebrity fashion icons everywhere.

The word bandana derives from the Hindi word bāṅdhnū or badhnati in Sanskrit, meaning to bind or to tie, and the print has a long history tracing back to the 17th century in South Asia and the Middle East. The term “bandana” actually didn’t come along until being anglicized into “bandannoe” by the Portuguese. The bandana print is something simple, yet provides a glimpse into a deep-rooted history filled with various subcultures, political independence, workers’ rights, pop-culture advertising and rebellion.

Over its nearly 300-year history, bandana prints have been seen across America's Wild West, Japanese fashion, gang affiliation, workwear, biker style and as a tool for political campaigns like in the American Revolution.

The bandana we know today was created by Martha Washington, wife of George Washington, when she had a print created by John Hewson of her husband on horseback surrounded by flags, cannons and political messaging, symbolizing their fight for American independence. After the industrial revolution, the bandana came to have a huge influence over pop culture advertising and marketing, being used to promote everything from sports to music — and just like that a new marketing technique was created into a fashion trend that could be worn by anyone, anywhere.

Fast forward to 2017, bandanas made their fashion comeback in a big way. Fashion month across the globe was taken over by the movement #TiedTogether, implemented by The Business of Fashion. The movement encouraged members of the fashion industry to wear a white bandana as “a sign to the world that you believe in the common bonds of humankind — regardless of race, sexuality, gender, or religion.” From then on, the bandana trend has been blowing up. As you can see, bandana prints have been a wardrobe staple dating back to Ancient Persia and America’s Wild West. Now the trend is back and doesn’t look like it plans on slowing down. From festival style to Justin Timberlake’s 2018 Super Bowl halftime show, bandana prints are everywhere – and we’re here for it.

We’re bringing the bandana print poolside with this patchwork Bandana Print, in a blue shade that can be worn as easy as your favorite pair of blue denim jeans. And take your pool look to the next level with our set of matching Light Blue Bandana Swim Trunks and Camp Shirts.


[Photograph of Red Paisley Bandana] (2018). Retrieved from

[Photograph three young men wearing bandanas (2018). Retrieved from

[Photograph of Woman Wearing Bandana] (n.d.). Retrieved from

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