How to Knit a Scarf

Preparing yourself to learn how to knit a scarf for a cold winter season? That is fantastic, because you have landed on the right page, which will give you just the kind of information you want about knitting. Scroll down...
Talking on the subject of knitting, it simply reminds me of my good old days prior to the winter season, where my mother would sit on the porch outside my house with her knitting bag and other relative accessories and some old country songs playing by her side she would knit and purl a variety of clothing for me when I was little. Whilst I was writing this article, it just took me back to those lovely memories I had spent with my mother then. Knitting is an activity or you can say is an art which brings a relaxation of mind anytime and any place you wish to do it. As long as, you have your knitting stuff with you, knitting a scarf or for that matter, hair bands, glass covers or table covers, sweaters etc. would not be a problem.

Many are new to the concept of knitting. Some fear to hold the knitting needles as they might think it is not their cup of tea. But then, that's always not the case. Once you understand that knitting consists of knit and purl stitches, staging a step up from that lesson, you can come up with a variety of patterns and ideas in stitching. So, here is a head start for all you new knitters. The simplest project you could start with is learning to knit a scarf. The length and the steps gets repeated over and again, which over a period will help you set your hand on this job perfectly. So come, delve further more into this article to learn to knit a scarf to pull in some warmth on the cold-winter nights.

Knitting a Scarf

Before you get started on this procedure of knowing the different techniques and ways to knit, let's come to learn about the basics of knitting, i.e., the obvious materials required are:

You Will Need
  • Yarn: It is suggested to practice with a yarn which is worsted weight. At first, employ one color to your project, later on multiply the scarf using a variety of colors. The choice of purchasing the yarn is up to you. Feel the thread material properly before buying because the comfort of the thread is crucial for knitting.
  • Needles: Needless to say needles are available in any form you like. In metals, bamboo, plastic, resin and sometimes even wood. By personal experience I say, it is advisable to use wood or plastic needles if you are a beginner.
  • Crochet Hook: If in case you lose on some stitches, crotchet needles are a best equipment to pick up those dropped stitches in the process. You can purchase the crotchet hooks in the size; close or H.
  • Scissors: Keeping scissors by your side whilst you are knitting is essential. You will need it every time to hand cut the yarn from its end. Try not breaking the yarn with your teeth or hand, or else your half knitted scarf would simply begin to unravel and stretch out.
Once these materials are ready, next step is to know some tips on knitting a scarf before you actually get started with that project. Here are some, take a look..

Tips To Remember
  1. Thick or Fine?: Generally, before starting any knitting project, you have to check for the density of your clothing. In this case, how thick would you want your scarf to be? Depending on that the weight of the wool is employed. Normally, while knitting scarves, an 8 ply yarn works just fine. Without too much difficulty, an 8 ply yarn is easy to use, medium weighted and readily available. Many others prefer a finer knitted scarf. Hence, accordingly you can buy a ply yarn to get started.
  2. Wide or Narrow?: If you are the kind of person who likes wider scarfs that are easily folded half an half, that's a personal choice. If not go for a lovely narrow scarf which does not need to be folded. Also, it depends on whom you are knitting it for. If it's for a child a light and narrow scarf would be fine but if it's for your husband or a partner, thicker and wider scarfs would suit their personality.
  3. Long or Short?: In case if you are knitting scarves for an adult, he/she might need a long length scarf which varies from measurements between 160cm to maximum 2 meters long. This job mainly depends for whom you are knitting the scarf for. If it's your young daughter who is barely 6years old, she will need a shorter length scarf and if it's a young lady, probably a fashionable scarf would go with her personality. Keeping these points in your mind, you will have to commence your project.
In knitting casting on is sort of the most difficult part of learning how to knit at first, but once you get the knack of it, it gets simpler. Casting on, is no big deal, but just a simple technique of hooking, yarning and slipping a knot. Mmm...are you still in a confusion??? Don't be! Here I'll explain in brief what exactly is casting on.

Casting On
First step, you need to learn to make a slipknot. Once learned, make one on the needle. Next step, your index finger and thumb should be located close to the point of the needle and with that on your left hand, hold the needle with that knot. Your right hand should be used to pull out the yarn from the skein and also to hold another needle. Don't forget to hold your fingers close to the tip of the needle. Now, make use of the slipknot, i.e from front to back, insert the tip of the right needles. The right will be situated under the left needles. Similarly, the left needle should be moved with your left fingers over to the right needle, where your right fingers should pick up the yarn and place it over the right needle which is at the bottom. Hope, it's clear till this step. Now, you have to place your right fingers to the right needle and cast the yarn to the tip of the right needle to the ongoing stitch. Immediately, slip the left hand needle into the stitch which is created newly and make the both hand needles parallel.

Later, you have to remove the needle from the new stitch and draw the yarn from the skein lightly. That will conceal a stitch on the needle. And there you go, your first stitch is ready. You have made it. Check, you should be having two stitches on the left hand needle. Lastly, from the new stitch you have just made, insert the tip of the right hand needle under the left needle. And voila! you are ready with the process of casting on. Keep repeating the steps by playing on with the knits one time on the left hand and next time on the right. This way you will cast too many stitches and your pattern will begin to form soon.

Moving on to, knitting a scarf for beginners, if you are new to knitting, i.e. a beginner, initially the knitting technique is going to be difficult. You will tend to make mistakes, for instance: in the place of a knit you might purl. This would cause a lot of uneven patches in the scarf, but there is no issue of getting disheartened. Gradual learning and knitting will give you a lot of practice and retreat all the errors soon. You never know, sometimes some errors might just add some charm to the look of your scarf.

Knitting a Scarf ...

.. for Beginners

Step#1: Collect your knitting materials like the 7 oz skein and a pair of knitting needles (size 8). A 7 oz yarn is medium worsted weight, thus start off with choosing a plain easy color.

Step#2: As discussed earlier, decide the width of your scarf.

Step#3: Now that you have red how to cast on, begin casting on the number of stitches for the width of your scarf. Note, that once you commence knitting your scarf, the width by itself would stretch out slightly.

Step#4: Keep using the knit stitch for every coming row. Keep knitting till you get the desired length. As, again discussed earlier, the length wholly and solely depends on your personal choice.

Step#5: Once you reach the ends, bind together the lengths of the scarf to the size you want it to be.

Step#6: Lastly, neatly weave the end of the yarn and insert it to the bottom of the scarf so that it is not seen.

Now that you have achieved knitting your scarf with a single color, here is a short description to knit a two-colored scarf. Blending in two or more colors in one scarf definitely adds vogue, style and a good way to have an accessory matching up with your different outfits. A two colored scarf can be worn and used for a host of reasons, like youngsters can wear it for their favorite sports team, or can give them as a gift to their friends or if you want to cheer up your own mood by matching your outfit on a cold winter evening, scarves can come very much in handy. Think about it. So you wanna move on, from one monotonous color to a multitude of colors, here is what you need to do.

You Will Need
  • Bamboo Knitting Needles (size 13 ~ 9inch)
  • Yarn (2 balls) maximum for a length of 5 feet scarf
.. with Two Colors

Step#1: Pick up one color say, blue. On the bamboo needles begin casting on nearly 22 stitches with that same color. Initially for the first six rows of stitching, try to do a garter stitch, i.e like an elastic band used to hold up a sleeve or a stocking.

Step#2: Depending upon the width of the stripe you want in the scarf, use the first color to stitch the next 8 rows in a stockinette form.

Step#3: Now, comes the changing time. Change the yarn to the next color, say yellow and continue with the stockinette stitch. Keep knitting until you have the desired width of the new colored stripe in the scarf.

Step#4: Again, switch back to the first color that is blue and continue using the same stitch till the end of the process. You have to continue using this color until you see your scarf come nearer to the end.

Step#5: Now that you have reached the end of your scarf, for the last 6 rows all you have to do is immediately switch back from the stockinette to garter stitch.

Step#6: Bind off the ends quickly with the remaining tails of the yarn. And here you go, ready with a multicolored neck scarf looking all good on you.

Well, now that you are a beginner quickly set your hand on these comprehensive knitting tips and techniques I have explained in this article and then you see for yourself, how addictive you will get all the time, clicking with those needles now and again. Enjoy!
By Fatima Rangwala
Last Updated: 9/20/2011
Bouquets and Brickbats