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Knit Infinity Scarf
Infinity scarves are one trend that just keeps going and growing. You can find them in everything from chunky knitted wools to smooth cashmere to sheer voiles. We wanted to revisit our earlier infinity scarf tutorial with an eye for how to utilize some of the lovely pre-embellished fabrics that are often available this time of year, although as shown below, florals and abstracts would also be lovely. For this scarf to work well, it’s best to choose a fabric that comes in a very wide width (at least 58″ – 60″) and has a lovely soft drape. We opted for knit, a category that offers an amazing array of colors, patterns, and textures. We found a soft jersey knit in a dusty charcoal gray pre-embellished with pretty sparkles, giving our scarf day-into-evening appeal. We also changed-up our original cutting plan to make the best use of the fabric. By cutting and sewing together a number of strips on the diagonal, similar to how bias binding is sewn, you can hide the seams and get a nice bit of stretch so your finished circle is easy to twist and loop into just the look you want.
Our scarf finishes at approximately 86″ in circumference x 12″ in width. This is enough length for a double or triple loop on most people.
Because we’re working with such large strips of fabric, photography at actual size is a challenge. Instead, we made a mini version of our scarf to be able to capture the steps within the standard frame of the camera.
Don’t let this small version throw you as you walk through the instructions below. It reminds me of that great scene in the movie Spinal Tap where they end up with a Stonehenge stage set that is just 12 inches high rather than 12 feet. Wouldn’t want that to happen to you!
Our pretty embellished knit fabric was purchased locally, and we found lots of great knit options from which to choose. Below are a few choices from Fabric.com which you can find in their Jersey Knits category; shop your favorite online or in-store retailer for these and more.
Sewing Tools You Need
- Sewing Machine and standard presser foot
Fabric and Other Supplies
- 1½ yards of 58″+ wide soft jersey knit or similar lightweight fabric; ** see note below on width
- All purpose thread to match fabric
- See-through ruler
- Fabric pen or pencil
- Iron and ironing board
- Scissors or rotary cutter and mat
- Tape measure
- Seam gauge
- Seam ripper
- Straight pins
- Hand sewing needle
- From the knit, cut FOUR 13″ wide x WOF (width of fabric) rectangles.
NOTE: ** The fabric we used was 60″ wide, although 58″ would also work, as noted above in the Supplies list. Most knits come quite wide like this. We show piecing together four lengths, but you could use additional lengths to equal the four rectangles if you’re working with a narrower knit. Because the scarf is traditionally twisted and/or looped when worn, the extra seams would be unlikely to show much, if at all.
- Separate the rectangles into two pairs. Place each pair right sides together, then stack the two pairs together one on top of the other.
- Make sure all all four layers are flat and smooth and all edges are flush.
- You will be making two 45˚ cuts, one on each end. As shown in the diagram below, the two cuts are parallel, one goes down from the top left corner, the other goes up from bottom right corner. You’ll discard the ends you cut away and just work with four center segments.
- The easiest way to set up this cut is to align your see-through ruler along a 45˚ grid line on your cutting mat. You can then slice each angle with a rotary cutter. If you do not have a cutting mat with grid lines, use a ruler and protractor to calculate and draw in your 45˚ angles… reaching back to your days in Mrs. Peterson’s fourth grade math class!
- Below you can see our four layers (two pairs right sides together) after they have been cut. Remember, as we mentioned above, we made a mini version of the scarf in order to be able to capture the steps within the frame of the camera. Your pieces will be much larger than shown here.
At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board
- To create each finished length, you need to stitch together each pair. Flip over all four lengths so they are right side up. Match up the angles as shown below.
- Place each pair right sides together, aligning along the angle. The two lengths of the fabric will form a right angle, and at the seam line, the points will extend beyond the straight edges by ½”. This is similar to how you stitch together strips of bias binding. Pin in place.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch each pair together to create two finished lengths. Gently press the seam allowances open.
- Measure and mark 3″ from each square end of each piece. Don’t forget, our photos are from our mini version we created just for photography purposes.
- And, mark 3″ from each pointy end. Both of these sets of marks will become your starting and stopping points for each side seam.
- Place the two lengths right sides together and pin in place along both long sides, aligning all the 3″ pin points as well as the center diagonal seams.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch the two pieces together along both long sides, remembering to start and stop 3″ from each end at your pin marks.
- Press the seams open.
- Turn the scarf right side out. Gently press flat.
NOTE: Because our fabric was pre-embellished with sparkles, we used a pressing cloth and low heat when pressing from the right side.
- With the scarf still right side out, fold it in half and match up the raw ends.
- Fold the outer ends out of the way and place the innermost ends right sides together. Pin in place. As above, the angled ends will extend ½” on each side.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch the layers together.
- Twist the scarf around and a pull it inside out a bit so you can now match up the remaining two outermost raw ends.
- Place these ends right sides together and pin in place.
- Using a ½” seam allowance, stitch these layers together.
- Using the 6″ gaps still remaining in the side seams, adjust the scarf so the entire loop is now right side out.
- Reach in and place the raw edges of one side “gap” right sides together. You’ll need to pull them through the other side of the gap towards you in order to pin in place to complete the seam. Stitch together, making sure this new seam to close the “gap” is flush with the sewn seam.
NOTE: This is a tough step to capture in a photograph, but it will make sense when you have the scarf in your hands. You are just closing the gap in one of the side seams.
- Push the completed side seam through the open gap and back into position. The final gap must be hand sewn.
- Fold in the raw edges of the remaining gap so they are flush with the sewn seam. Pin in place.
- Hand stitch the opening closed with a small, neat ladder stitch.
- Press, using a pressing cloth if you’re working a pre-embellished knit.
Project Design: Alicia Thommas
Sample Creation and Instructional Outline: Debbie Guild
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As I read this and looking at the measurements; I come across so many beautiful 100% cashmere sweaters at Goodwill. You could easily convert that sweater into an expensive gift for mere pennies! What a great pattern and idea starter for me!
Yea for up-cycling! Love the idea 🙂