Monday, February 13, 2012

Built-in scarf tutorial

Want a project that's easy, quick and super gratifying? Here it is! This took me roughly 20 minutes to make, but it left me ridiculously excited for 200 days... or it probably will. I did only just make it. I'll get back to you.

Anyway, I love the end result. And if your little one is like mine, so will the recipient. Riley's penchant for accessorizing actually inspired this top. She loves throwing on headbands and princess skirts, watches and bracelets, and when she saw me in a scarf, she needed one. However, if she's going to wear a scarf to preschool, I'd like it to return home, too. So I done thunk up this idea. :)

5-inch strip of knit fabric


Cut your fabric, 5 inches by the width of fabric.  If you want your scarf wider, by all means, cut it wider!  No rules here!  My strip also ended up being about 48 inches long.

Fold edges over and cut a little curve.

It will look like this when you open it back up.

Next, make a lettuce edge on your scarf.  If you haven't done this, boy, it's fun!  It's super easy, and it turns out so cool.  Here's how you do it.  Set your machine to a zig-zag stitch and decrease the stitch length.  I set mine to 2 1/2.    You're going to stitch, so the outside of the zig-zag hits just outside the edge of your fabric.  The big thing, though, is that you want to stretch the fabric as you go.  Stretch it out in front of your needle, but hold it in back, so you can actually get stitching.

Full disclosure: my hands hurt after I finish, from holding onto that fabric to stretch it!  But, oh, is it worth it!

Now run a gathering stitch down the center of your scarf.  Gather it to ruffle your scarf to your desired length.  Mine ended up being around 32 inches after I had it all ruffled.

Just a little tip.  After I finish gathering, I tie the top and bottom threads together, so the gathers don't loosen up.  Here's a picture of me tying them, in case you don't know what tying is. ;)

Here she is: your scarf!  So stinkin' cute, right?  You should probably find other things to add lettuce edges to.

Now grab your shirt and pin the center of your scarf to the center of the back.  Keep pinning the scarf around the shoulders.

I overlapped my scarf, so I only pinned down the side that was going to be underneath.  Once you're done pinning, stitch the scarf, following the line of your gathering stitch.

Remember to place your top overlap before stitching!  Doesn't have to be perfect, so just wing it.  Then take those gathering stitches out.

And 20-30 minutes later, you are done!

So cute.  And no toddler's going to lose it for you! :)

By the way, for older kids, you could leave the front loose--only sewing along the back and shoulders, so they can throw the scarf over their shoulders at will (Who's Will?  Hahahahaha!).  But I didn't want any risk of scarf-tugging or snagging.  Just another idea!


  1. Fabulous tutorial... I'm thinking, perhaps the bottom of ruffles on a little girl's t-shirt dress for lettuce edges.

  2. What a great idea. I love the whole lettuce thing, will have to try it out.

  3. Above lettuce edge scarf tutorial is very informative. provides international quality lettuce edge tees at nice price.


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