Ruffled Scarf Tutorial

I have had several comments and requests for a tutorial on my ruffled scarfs that I wear.  So here it goes:
What you will need
2 yards jersey or knit material
thread to match
sewing machine
Cut 2 strips 6″ wide by 2 yards long. (for a double ruffle)
Place both strips together (so it appears like one)

Adjust your machines upper tension to +3 (for me that is moving the dial to the right as far as it will go)
Adjust your machine stitch to 4.8 or something close to that. 

Stitch one row down the center of the scarf, making sure to back-stitch about every 8″ or so to ensure your ruffle stays in place.

It should come out of the backside of your machine looking like this. (here you can see the two layers)
Repeat this 2 more times one on each side of the middle seam.  Try to put the stitching between the middle and the edge of the scarf.  I don’t measure, just eye it, when it ruffles you won’t be able to tell if it is not exact.  Remember to back-stitch as you go.

You can whip one up in under 10 minutes.


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  1. Thank You for a great tutorial! I am always scared of sewing knit material, but I may have to try this! I just love how it turned out! 🙂

    Have a great day, Dawn!


  2. Good Tute Dawn! I have fabric in olive green and mustard yellow to make some. I did a demo, and it is indeedy easy peasy! And they are so darn cute. BUT…knit can be quite pricey, so I am watching for sales! Where do you buy your fabric..way out in the stix???

  3. Wonderful tutorial Dawn, thank you! My machine will not do the gathering on it’s own like that. It’s 20 years old, maybe the newer ones do it. I sewed it like you said and then gathered it by hand and that worked perfectly fine. I used fleece, that’s what I had on hand and it is not floppy, or flimsy enough, but I am going to get the fabric you suggest and hopefully I can make several as Christmas gifts for my girls. Thanks so much!
    Hugs, Cindy

  4. Okay, I’m not seeing what makes it gather/ruffle? I’ve never used knit and am wondering if the stitch settings do this to the fabric b/c it is knit? Also, does the scarf taper at the ends? It kinda looks tapered in your beautiful picture on the “manequin”.

    I got knit @ Joann fabrics on sale tonight 10/28 for %50/off. There was also some on their clearance aisle.


  5. Wendy, I hope you check back for an answer to your question. I had no email liked to your question:( The tension setting is what will gather the material, and the ends are not tapered the scarf is 6″ throughout:)

  6. Dawn, I love this, the color is great too., But ooh la la this is a gorgeous tutorial, thank you xo

  7. Thanks Dawn for the reply. I’ve made several attempts on 3 machines and haven’t succeeded yet. I’m so baffled! I’ve been sewing a long time and have done all kinds of sewing from heirloom baby clothes to slipcovers for my furniture…and lots in between. This it seems is beyond my skill set. And patience now too! 😉 If anyone else tries and succeeds and can share more/info and tips I’d appreciate it.

    My stitch length is set at the longest possible. Tension must bethe issue. None of th 3. Achines I’ve had access to have a 3.8. So, maybe knowing more about tension would help. I’ve not done projects that required adjusting with the tension. I’ve gathered before using a basting stitch and the another time with a gathering tape. What kind of tension should we be set on, high, low, mid? Anyone with tension tips? My tension trouble is giving me tension!

  8. Wendy, My machine tension is on the top and in its normal position it says “0” when I want it to ruffle I move the tension to “+3” which is as tight as the tension will go. I leave the bobbin tension alone. I do nothing else and it works for me, not sure what the difference is!! Keep me informed.

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