5 Tips for Scarf Knitting

by Alice Seidel

Does your newest knitted scarf look like an inner tube? Is your scarf long enough to wrap around your neck and three other people, too? Have you decided on the perfect scarf pattern and then find that the yarn is discontinued?

Well, help is here. Just read on to find out my 5 tips for scarf knitting. It’s really the little things that make a difference, not just in life, but in knitting, too.

Scarf knitting is one of the most fun projects you can learn. Because there are so many different variations on patterns and yarn, you will never knit the same scarf twice, unless you want to. Occasionally, problems do arise. Often you can solve them yourself, but if you are a new knitter or have never encountered these issues before, you may not be familiar with what to do about them.

Here are 5 tips for your scarf knitting:

#1 Never knit a scarf in stockinette stitch. Yes, I know, this is the basic knitting pattern for just about everything you see out there. But, it will not work for a scarf. Stockinette stitch will roll your scarf into a tube and no matter what you do, it will stay that way. The best solution is to not use stockinette stitch, rather than to try and fix that stitch once you have. There are many variations of knit and purl stitches that you can use to craft a scarf, so just look for those. And they are usually very simple to knit.

#2 If you can’t find the yarn that is called for in a specific project, then substitute another yarn. Check your instructions to see how many yards of yarn you need, then buy a substitute yarn in that amount. Skeins and balls of yarn vary in yardage, so don’t assume that buying three balls of another yarn will suffice. Always check your numbers.

#3 Be creative with color. Scarves don’t have to be knit all in one color; in fact, the self-striping yarns which are very popular these days, will create the most sublime color patterns without you doing anything but knitting. Or if you like, start with a main color (MC), then switch to another color, then back again. It’s all up to you.

#4 Pay attention to the length. Some scarves look wonderful at a very long length. Others, not so much. For cowls or muffler-type scarves, there are usually a set number of rows to follow. And for children’s scarves, make sure they are the proper length for your little one.

#5 Know what you are knitting. Is your scarf going to be for deepest winter or a gossamer summer attraction? It makes a difference in the yarn you choose, and also in the knitting stitches you use. Before you begin knitting, have a clear end in mind. Not every scarf pattern is the same, or should be used in the same way.

So there you have my five tips for scarf knitting. Keep your stitches simple, and experiment with color and texture. You’ll be sure to knit up a scarf winner.

Happy knitting!

Alice Seidel is a freelance copywriter, and an avid knitter. For knitting tips, advice and the best in scarf knitting, visit http://www.scarfknitting.com to make your knitting sparkle!

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One Comment

  1. Hi Alice! Great tips! I’d like to add a couple more:
    1) do not hesitate to rip everything out and start over. I started knitting a dropped stitch patter that I loved, but after a few inches, I thought it was too wide. I lamented about thins to a friend who knits, and she suggested that I just start over. I figured out how many stitches I needed to keep the pattern and to have it 10″/12″ wide!
    2) I frequently slip the first stitch, knit wise or purl wise depending on the patter, and that helps to keep the scarf flat.
    Now I’m anxious to start a new project!

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