Learn how to crochet a scarf step by step with this easy crochet scarf pattern and tutorial guide for beginners. A scarf is a perfect way for beginner crocheters to make something useful. It is so rewarding to have something to show at the end of all your practice and learning! With a scarf, you do not need to worry at all about any shaping, increasing, or decreasing. It is the best way to practice any crochet stitch, as well as is useful for learning about tension and gauge. You do not need to be an expert at reading a crochet pattern, but it will give you a good introduction to doing so.
How to Crochet a Scarf Step By Step - Free Double Crochet Scarf Pattern
For the crochet scarf pattern discussed here, I have chosen the double crochet stitch, as it works up quickly and is one of the most basic crochet stitches. Double crochet is a foundational crochet stitch that most people learn almost as soon as they begin crocheting.
Crochet Scarf Pattern - Materials
For this crochet scarf pattern, I would also suggest using a nice thick, chunky yarn for your scarf. This, together with a large crochet hook, is easy to work with, and once again, it works up quickly so that you won’t get discouraged by how long the project is taking! It will also be extra warm!
- 2 balls or skeins of category 5, bulky yarn such as Lion brand. (This is also known as chunky yarn in the UK.). Your yarn can be acrylic or wool or a wool blend.
- Size K, 6.5 mm - 9 mm hook size. Check the label of your yarn for the recommended size.
- Yarn needle
- Tape Measure
How to Crochet a Scarf Step By Step - Abbreviations
The following abbreviations are used in this how to make a scarf tutorial. (All US terminology)
- dc= double crochet
- ch=chain stitch
- st(s) stitch(es)
- sl st= slip stitch
- tog= together
Crochet Scarf Pattern - Size
This pattern will make a scarf that is 9” (23 cm) wide by 76” (193 cm) long. You can easily change this to make it wider or narrower, longer or shorter, but this is an ideal size with which to start.
Crochet Scarf Pattern - Gauge
For this scarf, using the suggested materials, your gauge needs to be
- 9 stitches to 3 “(7.5cm)
- 5 rows to 3” (7.5cm)
It is common practice to give a crochet gauge for any pattern but really when you are making a scarf your gauge is not that important. The scarf will fit you regardless of whether it is slightly shorter, longer, wider or narrower.
How to Crochet a Scarf Step By Step Instructions
(Using US terminology.)
Foundation for Simple Crochet Scarf:
- Create a slip knot and chain 30 stitches. Leave a tail of yarn before you start your chain stitches, for weaving in later.
How to Crochet a Scarf First Row:
- Into the 4th chain, work a double crochet. (dc).
I have a full tutorial on how to double crochet, but in case you just need a refresher, here are the steps:
- Yarn over (back to front), Insert into 4th chain
- Yarn over and pull through (3 loops on hook)
- Yarn over and pull through (2 loops on hook)
- Yarn over and pull through (1 look on hook)
- Work 1 double crochet (dc) into each chain (ch) stitch, all the way across to the end. Be careful that your row of chain stitches does not twist as you work into it!
How to Crochet a Scarf Row 2:
- Chain 3 and turn.
(When the pattern says turn, they mean you must flip your work horizontally so that you can work back across the row you have just created.)
- Now you must work a dc stitch into each dc you made in the previous row. Be sure to insert your hook through both of the loops at the top of each stitch you are working into.
- Work all the way across the row. Count your stitches to be sure you haven't accidentally increased or decreased a stitch along the way. You must have 26 stitches. (Not counting your turning chain.) Your last dc must be worked into the top of the chain stitches at the beginning of your last row.
Row 3 Onwards:
- Chain 3 as your turning chain.
- Turn your work.
- Keep going, working 1 dc into both of the top loops of each stitch from the previous row.
- Continue doing this until your scarf reaches 76” (193cm) or the length you would like it to be.
How to Crochet a Scarf and Finish
To finish off the scarf, cut the yarn, leaving about 6” (15 cm) for weaving in. Pull this length of yarn all the way through your last stitch loop. Pull it gently to make sure it is secure and will not come undone.
Use the 6” (15cm) of yarn to weave into the scarf so that you don’t have untidy bits of yarn hanging loose. Thread it into the yarn or tapestry needle, and on the wrong side of your work, weave it horizontally through a few stitches. Then thread it through one stitch vertically, and back again horizontally in the opposite direction. Do this with any loose ends of yarn. The ‘tail’ bit from the beginning, which you left before starting your original chain stitches must be woven in, and any joins of yarn you made along the way.
What Crochet Stitch is Best for a Scarf
You can use the exact method above for your crochet project with many other simple stitches. Which crochet stitch is best for a scarf depends on the look you want. Do you want it dense or with long holes?
- Single crochet stitch (sc) - Gives dense stitch with minimal holes. Sc is great for making a scarf as it is a simple stitch that doesn't take much concentration to do. Great for crocheting in front of the TV.
- Half double crochet stitch (hdc)
- Treble crochet (tr) - gives a longer stitch with larger holes.
- Basic stitches for crochet
Treble crochet will have you completing the scarf the fastest and will result in larger holes giving a lacy look. You can also change yarn colors to create a look as individual as you are!
Really you can use any crochet stitch as all you are doing is making a simple rectangle of varying lengths and widths.
How Many Chains do you Need for a Crochet Scarf?
This free crochet scarf pattern uses 30 chains but you can adjust to your preference. When using bulky or extra bulky yarn, I like to use 20-30 chain. Make your chains loosely and then measure the length to see if that is what you require. Reassess after the first row and don't be afraid to pull it all apart and start again.
Thinner yarn will need more chains and you might need to do up to 40 chains.
How Long Should a Scarf Be for Crochet
This free scarf pattern recommends 76" (193cm) but really there is no right or wrong. As you are crocheting, throw the scarf around your neck every now and again and see if you like how it looks.
How to Crochet a Scarf Lengthwise
If you have been looking at various beginner scarf patterns, you may notice that many of them start with a very long chain, the length of the scarf. They then direct you to crochet up the width of the scarf. (As opposed to this one, which starts with the width, and you crochet up the length.)
I prefer not to start with that very long chain, as it becomes twisted really easily, and it is easy to lose count of how many stitches you are working on, and end up with uneven rows and edges. It is that much more difficult to keep checking your stitches when there are over 200 of them! If you are crocheting across the width, as in this pattern, you only have 26 stitches to keep checking on. It is also easier to alter the length of the scarf if you wish to, by stopping sooner or crocheting on for longer.
If you really like the look of the scarf crocheted down the length and want to give it a try:
- Start with 216 chains,
- crochet 1 dc into each chain,
- chain 3 and turn,
- 1 dc into each stitch,
- repeat for 15 rows. (This will give you a scarf of about 72” (183cm) long and 9” (23cm) wide.)
How to Crochet a Scarf with Ribbing
Another easy scarf to make is a rib stitch scarf. This gives a beautiful texture to your scarf. You will crochet a rib scarf lengthwise.
- Crochet chain stitches the length you want for your scarf. Put the foundation chain around your neck and check it feels the right length.
- Half double crochet in the 3rd stitch from the hook.
- Half double crochet all the way across the first row.
- Chain 2. (This is your turning chain.)
- Half double crochet into the back loop only of the row below. You can see the photo below, the back loops are where I have inserted the pink hook. Normally you would go through both loops but going through the back loop only creates a ribbed effect.
Continue crocheting the hdc into the back loops until the scarf is your desired width.
How to Crochet a Scarf ‘Granny’ Style
Many crocheters start their adventure into the world of crochet learning to make ‘Granny Squares’. If you enjoy making these, you can simply stitch a whole lot of granny squares together to form a scarf, or you could also make a granny rectangle scarf. Try it out with this crochet scarf pattern.
How to Make a Granny Square Scarf
Learn how to make a granny square and use all your samples to make a scarf. My scarf was sewn together in rows of 1 but you could make smaller squares and have double rows. By using a matching color for the single crochet border, it gave a cohesive look to the scarf.
How to Make a Granny Rectangle Scarf
To do this you would start with a long chain of about 170 chains. Then work your granny clusters around BOTH sides of this foundation chain. Don’t forget to add double clusters in the corners! So in essence, you will have one long, thin granny square (rectangle!) forming your entire scarf. See my full tutorial on crochet rectangles which includes instructions for a granny rectangle.
The biggest tip I can give you when making this style of scarf is to make sure your foundation chain is loose. On this pink one, I made it way too tight and the edges of the scarf ended up wavy. I'd recommend using a larger crochet hook just for the chain and then switching to your regular size.
How to Crochet a Scarf Fringe
So fringe or no fringe? This is entirely a matter of personal choice. Some people think a scarf is incomplete without a fringe, and others just find it annoying to have to make it! For those who like a fringe, here are the instructions for making one.
- Cut strips of yarn twice the length that you want your finished fringe to be, plus a little extra to give enough length for trimming. The amount of strands is up to you.
- Gather your strips into groups. In this example, I used 5 pieces of yarn for each piece of fringe. Fold the group in half. This can be done with as little as one piece of yarn for each piece of fringe, but this will give you a very sparse fringe!
- Place your scarf so that the right side is facing you (wrong side is down). Insert the hook from the right side, and pull the group of yarn strips back through the project by hooking the yarn at the middle where you folded it.
- Pull the yarn through just enough to get a loop that you can put your fingers through.
- Reaching through the loop, grab the yarn tails and pull them back through the loop. Or you can use your crochet hook to pull them through if that is easier.
- Pull the tails in the direction that you want the fringe to lie, until the knot is secure.
- Place the fringe on a flat surface and use your scissors to trim all the tails evenly.
How Long Should I Make the Scarf Fringe?
You can make it as long as you wish. Just to remember to make it double your desired length plus at least 1 inch (2.5cm) for trimming. A great average length is 3-4 inches long. This will suit a variety of crochet scarves. Cut your yarn pieces 9 inches and then trim them when finished.
How to Crochet a Scarf with Yarn Tassels
You can also make individual yarn tassels that you can add to the corners of your crochet scarf.
- Cut a piece of cardboard a little longer than your desired length. Wrap the yarn around it. Remember the thickness will be double since it is both sides.
- Cut the bottom.
- Tie a slip knot in a piece of yard.
- Wrap the yarn around the top and knot.
- Wrap another piece around ¾ inch (2cm) from the top.
- Using a large needle, hide the ends inside the head of the tassel.
- Trim the ends and you have a beautiful tassel to attach.
How to Crochet a Scarf - In Conclusion
Well, there you have it an easy crochet scarf pattern for a simple scarf that should only take you a few hours to make. You can make one in every shade of the rainbow to match every outfit you own, or you can make a couple to give as gifts. I know many people who use up their yarn scraps and make scarves of many colors to donate to those less fortunate. Have fun introducing variety to this pattern and creating a truly individual scarf to suit your own personality!
Free Crochet Scarf Patterns
If you would like to try a different crochet scarf pattern, here are some roundups of free crochet patterns of some fancier variations. Expand your crochet skills!
Scarf Knitting Patterns
- Crochet Hook Size K, 6.5mm hook
- Yarn Needle
- 2 Balls Bulky (Chunky ) Yarn
- Create a slip knot and chain 30.
- Insert the hook into the 3th Chain and double crochet across the first row.
- Chain 3 for the turning chain.
- Turn and double crochet across the second row.
- Repeat double crochet rows until your scarf is the length you desire. A suggested length is 76" (193cm) long.
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