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Saturday, January 15, 2011

Ruffle Scarf

I don’t know about you, but I just can’t get enough of ruffles these days.  I have seen several tutorials lately for ruffled scarves, but some called for sewing with elastic thread (which I have never heard of, let alone tried).  Some called for measuring exact pleats (which I am too impatient to do).  I decided to try my hand at making a ruffled scarf with the patience and skills I currently have.

This morning I paid a visit to Denver Fabrics with my friends Rachel  Oh! I fell in love with the bargain tables.  Denver Fabrics has a room full of tables that have fabric “remnants” (some are 3 yards) at huge discounts.  I went in for scarf fabric and left with four others.  I found this pretty pink plaid that I thought could be warm in winter, but not too heavy for summer (it’s a really light-weight woven cotton).  I already had thread, ribbon, and a button, so this scarf cost me less than $6 to make!

  • Fabric (you will need a strip that is 96 inches or 8 feet long and 17 inches wide—I cut the fabric in strips and sewed them end to end)  If you buy 42" wide fabric, you will need to buy 1 and 1/3 yard.  If you buy 60 inch wide fabric, you will need to buy 1 yard.
  • 4+ feet of 3/4 inch ribbon
  • Sewing machine/thread
  • Button (mine is 1.5 inches in diameter)

***I chose a plaid, because I didn’t have to really measure.  I just folded and cut based on the pattern of the plaid.  Measurements are simply a guideline.***

  1. Begin by cutting/making a strip that is 17 inches wide and 96 inches long.
  2. Lay fabric right side down.  Fold ends of fabric in about 1/2 inch.
  3. Fold 5 inches of one side of fabric toward the middle.  Pin in place.
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  5. Fold the other side of the fabric in 1 inch.
  6. Fold again 5 inches.  You will cover the other edge.  Begin pinning from one edge to the other (pulling out the other pins as you go).
  7. Sew along the edge of your top fold.
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  9. Measure how much fabric you have from your seam to the closest edge.  I had about 2.5 inches.  Sew another seam the same distance from the other edge.
  10. Pin your safety pin through your ribbon (I fold the ribbon once to make it more sturdy).
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  12. Use the pin to thread the ribbon through the channel in the middle of the scarf.
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  14. Sew one edge of the scarf closed (be sure to get the end of the ribbon).
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  16. Reinforce the stitch on the ribbon by sewing again over the channel 1/4 inch from the first seam.
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  18. Pull the ribbon through the edge and repeat steps 10 & 11.
  19. Now you have a couple choices.  You can leave the gathers to move around, pin the gathers throughout the scarf and sew along the middle to stabilize the ruffle, or you can do what I did.  I just sewed a line across the center channel at the middle, of the scarf.  Then I sewed a line between the middle and each end.  This keeps the ruffle somewhat even, but gives it some wiggle room.
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  21. Now for the button.  I wanted a button because they are cute, and it would keep the scarf in place.  I put the scarf around my neck and held the ends of the scarf where I would want a button.  I placed a pin in each side to mark the spot.
  22. Sew a button on one side, and a buttonhole on the other.  I sewed the buttonhole perpendicular to the scarf, but I wish I had sewn it parallel.  The buttonhole pulls because of the gathering.
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  24. If you want a longer scarf, buy more (longer) fabric, and more (longer) ribbon.  If you just want more ruffles, keep the ribbon length the same, but add more (longer) fabric.


  1. Your scarf looks great! I love the pink plaid.
    That's an interesting way to do the ruffle...I've never seen it done like that before. I might have to try that out sometime...I wish it got cold enough here in Phoenix to justify making myself a scarf.
    Hopped on over from I <3 naptime.

  2. Great idea AND great design!!! I've been making fleece scarves as I can embroider them... but I've been wanting to try something different. This is perfect inspiration!! Thanks for the great tutorial!


  3. What a great idea! I love it. And I am close to Denver, I might have to check out that fabric store!

    I would love to have you come and link this to Fantastic Friday at


  4. I love it, I am so into scarves lately! Thanks so much for sharing.

  5. Thanks for all the love!

    Jen--I will try to link up on Friday.

    Thanks to those who are following (I am trying to reach 150 by July).


  6. Love the scarve and the pink plaid! You did a great job! Going to check out some more of your projects/blog right now. Thanks for sharing, Vicky

  7. Thanks for linking this up to Fantastic Friday. I cannot wait to see what you link up this week!


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