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How to Knit a Scarf

Learn to knit a scarf for a relaxing pastime and to engage in a constructive and creative activity.


  • Step 1: Make a slipknot Set the yarn to one side, holding a needle in your right hand. Make a slipknot, and loop onto the needle without tightening the knot. Leave a short tail hanging off.
  • TIP: Throughout your knitting, leave the knot wide enough to accept the needle, maintaining tension on the yarn for a consistent and tight color weave in the scarf.
  • Step 2: Cast on Cast on. Hold one needle in one hand. Grab the yarn with your other hand, and wrap the yarn around your index finger, crossing the yarn at the base of your finger. Slide the needle through this loop and off your finger, tightening the stitch.
  • Step 3: Repeat stitches for width Repeat this process until you have set the width for your scarf.
  • Step 4: Switch sides Transfer the needle, with the stitches, to your left hand. Pass the needle in your right hand through the first loop, going under the left needle.
  • Step 5: Knit Wrap the yarn under, and then over, the right needle, guiding the yarn with your right index finger. Slide the yarn through the stitch on the left needle, pulling that new stitch onto the right needle.
  • TIP: Remove the old stitch from the left needle when adding the new stitch to the right needle or you will have to start again.
  • Step 6: Build rows Repeat until all the stitches on the left have been moved to the right. Switch hands with the needles and build another row. Continue until you reach the scarf length. Count your stitches every few rows to make sure you haven't accidentally added any, or the width of your scarf will change.
  • TIP: Picking up an extra stitch at the end of a row is a common error. To avoid this, check the last stitch of the row as it goes on the right needle. Also be sure the first stitch at the beginning of a row is snug so loops from the stitches below do not wrap around the needle, creating what looks like two stitches.
  • Step 7: Finish the scarf Knit the first two stitches to finish your scarf. Pull the first stitch over the second and off of the needle. Knit the next stitch and repeat on the left. Pull the first stitch over the second and off of the right needle.
  • Step 8: Bind the edge Repeat until the edge is bound. Cut the yarn, leaving about four inches hanging, pull this through the last stitch, and knot it.
  • FACT: Knitted socks were discovered in an Egyptian tomb from the third to the sixth centuries. This is some of the earliest archaeological evidence of knitted garments.

You Will Need

  • An 8-ounce skein of four-ply yarn
  • No. 10 knitting needles
  • Time

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