Thursday, May 5, 2011

Tutorial: Make it for Mom: Loose knit Summer Scarf

Sewing tutorial: Loose weave summer scarf

So my mom lives too far for me to make anything for her, and also she doesn't wear scarves in summer.
But I thought you guys might like to make one for your mom on mother's day. So here's a tutorial for an easy breezy summer scarf.
What I love about scarves is that they are the perfect gift for most people and they are a very open-ended project. You can make one regardless of what skill level you're at. They are very forgiving in the sense that a couple of stitches here and there wouldn't make a big difference. The embellishment possibilities are practically endless and you can use so many different types of fabrics, which will give so many different results but will still look good.
So here's my tutorial for Summer Scarf made with a loose weave fabric. I have used this jute fabric to make it, but you can use pretty much any fabric which is loosely woven.

Supplies: For scarf body
               Loosely woven fabric : 41 inches X 36 inches
               Emboridery Floss in a matching or contrast color: 1 skein
               For embellishment
               Narrow Satin Ribboon : 3-4 yards
               Embroidery Floss in contrasting colors
               Upholstery needle. Or any needle with a big eye to thread satin ribbon through.
Now lets make our scarf:

Cut two pieces from fabric. Length 41 X Width 15 inches.
Cut two more pieces. Length 7.5 inches X width 15 inches.

Now sew the two bigger pieces ( right sides together) at their smaller (width) sides. Here's what you will
have at this point

Now serge the two smaller pieces at their 15 inch end ( only one side) and sew them on the main fabric at the ends. The serged side should be on top, and the raw end should line up with the raw end of main fabric.
If you don't have a serger you can just sew it on and secure it with a zigzag stitch so it wont fray.

Now pick out one or two threads from the upper fabric width about 2 inches from one end. Do the same at the other end. You would see a narrow alley on the fabric like this. Its kind of difficult to notice in this picture,
but if you look really hard you will see a sort of line going diagonally from near top left to bottom right.

Now use this narrow line as a guide and hand sew a stitch like this.
Keep in mind that even though you have picked out the thread from only the top fabric you have to take both layers of fabric when you sew these stitches. This will help us make dense tassles at both ends of scarf.

Once you have stitched across the width, pickout the threads from the end of the fabric from upto this stitch.
Like this:

pick out the threads from both the layers of the fabric.

When you pick out the threads from the inner layer you may notice that some of the threads go beyond the hand-stitched line. Thats because you picked out only the thread from first layer so only on that layer hand-stitching is aligned on the grain. But don't worry it doesn't matter. Just pick out all the threads even if they end up crossing the hand-stitching. Now you'll have nice and dense tassels at the ends of scarf.

Now you can fold the scarf half lengthwise with right sides together, sew across the length to make a tube and turn it out. Your scarf main body is finished now.

You can wear/gift it as is or you can embellish it. I'll talk about some embellishment options in my next post.