Easy Steps to Finish a Knit Scarf

Easy Steps to Finish a Knit Scarf

Knitting a scarf is a popular and rewarding project for both beginners and experienced knitters. However, one of the most important steps in creating a professional-looking scarf is finishing it properly. Finishing techniques can elevate your scarf from homemade to handmade with just a few simple steps.

Blocking your scarf is the first step in achieving a polished finish. This process involves shaping and sizing the scarf to ensure that it has an even and smooth appearance. To begin, soak the scarf in lukewarm water and gently squeeze out the excess moisture. Then, lay the scarf flat on a towel and carefully stretch it to the desired size and shape. Secure the edges with pins and allow the scarf to dry completely.

Seaming is another essential step in finishing a knit scarf. This technique involves joining the ends of your scarf together seamlessly. To start, lay the scarf on a flat surface and fold it in half lengthwise, aligning the ends. Thread a tapestry needle with matching yarn and insert it into the first stitch on one end, pulling the yarn through. Continue sewing through the stitches on both ends, using a whipstitch or mattress stitch, until the scarf is completely joined. Knot the yarn securely and weave in the loose ends.

Adding Fringe is a popular finishing touch that can give your scarf a stylish and trendy look. To do this, cut strands of yarn that are twice the desired length of your fringe. Fold each strand in half and insert the folded end into the edge of your scarf, creating a loop. Pull the loose ends through the loop and tighten, securing the fringe to the scarf. Repeat this process along the edges of your scarf until you achieve the desired amount of fringe.

By following these simple steps, you can finish your knit scarf like a pro. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced knitter, taking the time to properly block, seam, and add fringe to your scarf will give it a polished and professional appearance that you can be proud to wear or gift to someone special.

Choosing the Perfect Yarn

When it comes to finishing a knit scarf like a pro, choosing the perfect yarn is essential. The type and quality of yarn you choose can greatly impact the final look and feel of your scarf.

Here are some factors to consider when selecting the perfect yarn:

  1. Fiber: Yarn can be made from a variety of different fibers, including wool, acrylic, cotton, silk, and more. Each type of fiber has its own unique properties, so think about the look and feel you want for your scarf. For cozy warmth, consider wool or a wool blend. For a lightweight and breathable option, cotton or silk may be the way to go.
  2. Weight: Yarn comes in different weights, which refers to the thickness and density of the fibers. The weight of the yarn you choose can affect the drape and overall appearance of the finished scarf. Bulky yarns are thick and provide quick and chunky results, while lace weight yarns are delicate and produce a lacy effect. Consider the pattern you’ll be using and the desired look for your scarf when selecting the weight of your yarn.
  3. Color: The color of the yarn is another important consideration. Think about the recipient or the intended purpose of the scarf. If you’re knitting a scarf for a specific outfit or occasion, you may want to choose a color that complements or accents it. If you’re making a scarf as a gift, consider the recipient’s favorite colors or the color scheme of their wardrobe.
  4. Texture: Yarn comes in a wide variety of textures, from smooth and silky to textured and nubby. The texture can add interest and depth to your scarf, so think about the overall look you want to achieve. A smooth yarn will create a clean and polished look, while a textured yarn can add a cozy and rustic feel.

Remember to check the yarn label for any specific care instructions or recommended needle size, as this can also affect your knitting process and the final result.

Selecting the Right Needles

Choosing the right needles for your knit scarf project is crucial for achieving the desired outcome. Here are some factors to consider when selecting your needles:

  1. Size: The size of the needles will determine the thickness of your stitches. Larger needles will create looser and more open stitches, while smaller needles will create tighter and denser stitches. Consider the weight and thickness of your yarn when choosing the needle size.
  2. Material: Needles can be made from various materials, such as metal, wood, or plastic. Each material has its own characteristics that can affect your knitting experience. Metal needles are durable and provide smooth stitch transitions, while wooden needles have a natural warmth and grip. Experiment with different materials to find the one that suits your knitting style best.
  3. Length: The length of the needles can affect your comfort and the width of your scarf. Longer needles are great for larger projects as they can accommodate more stitches. Shorter needles, on the other hand, are more portable and ideal for smaller projects or knitting on-the-go.
  4. Type: Needles can come in various types, such as straight needles, circular needles, or double-pointed needles. Straight needles are commonly used for simple flat knitting, while circular needles are versatile and can be used for both flat and circular knitting. Double-pointed needles are ideal for projects with small circumferences, such as gloves or socks. Consider the type of knitting you’ll be doing when selecting your needles.

Take your time to explore different needle options and consider your personal preferences. The right needles can make a significant difference in the outcome of your knit scarf project, so choose wisely.

Casting On

The first step to starting your knit scarf is casting on. Casting on is the process of creating the initial stitches on your knitting needle. There are several methods you can use to cast on, but the most common method is the long-tail cast on.

To begin, you’ll need to leave a long tail of yarn. This tail should be about three times the width of your finished scarf.

Hold the tail end of the yarn in your right hand, and drape the working end of the yarn over your left thumb and hold it in your left hand. Use your right hand to hold both strands of yarn together and form a slingshot shape.

Insert the needle into the loop on your thumb from front to back, going under the loop of yarn coming from your right hand.

With your right hand, bring the working end of the yarn over the needle and back under the loop of yarn coming from your left thumb.

Use your thumb to release the loop from your thumb, and tighten the stitch on the needle. This is your first cast-on stitch.

Repeat the steps above until you have cast on the desired number of stitches for your scarf.

Once you have cast on all your stitches, you are ready to start knitting your scarf!

Knitting the Main Body

The main body of the scarf is where you will spend the majority of your knitting time. This is the part of the project that will determine the final length and width of your scarf.


  • Knitting needles
  • Yarn


  1. Begin by casting on the desired number of stitches. The number of stitches will depend on the width you want for your scarf. You can use a knitting pattern or simply cast on a number of stitches that feels comfortable to you.
  2. Once you have cast on your stitches, you can begin knitting the main body of the scarf. This can be done using a basic knit stitch or a more complex stitch pattern depending on your skill level and the desired design of your scarf.
  3. Continue knitting rows until you have reached the desired length for your scarf. You can measure your progress by laying the scarf flat and measuring from one end to the other.
  4. Remember to periodically check your stitches to make sure they are all even and consistent. If you notice any mistakes or dropped stitches, you can fix them with a crochet hook or by undoing the stitches and re-knitting them.


Once you have reached the desired length for your scarf, it’s time to finish off the main body. This can be done by binding off your stitches. To bind off, knit the first two stitches, then use your left needle to pull the first stitch over the second stitch and off the right needle. Continue this process until you have one stitch left on your right needle, then cut your yarn and pull it through the remaining stitch.

Note: If you want to add any additional embellishments or decorative elements to your scarf, such as fringe or buttons, this is the time to do so. You can find tutorials and instructions online for specific techniques.

With the main body of the scarf complete, you are now ready to move on to the next step: finishing the ends.

Adding Pattern Stitches

If you want to add some pattern stitches to your knit scarf, here are a few popular options:

  • Seed Stitch: This stitch pattern alternates knit and purl stitches across each row, creating a textured pattern with raised bumps.
  • Ribbing: Ribbing is created by alternating knit and purl stitches in a specific pattern, such as a 1×1 rib (knit 1, purl 1) or a 2×2 rib (knit 2, purl 2). This creates vertical columns of knit and purl stitches, resulting in a stretchy and elastic fabric.
  • Cable Stitch: Cable stitches create intricate twisted designs in your scarf. To knit a cable stitch, you need a cable needle to temporarily hold a group of stitches while you knit another group of stitches out of order. This creates the appearance of a twisted cable.
  • Lace Stitch: Lace stitches create an open and delicate pattern, perfect for adding a feminine touch to your scarf. Lace patterns typically involve creating yarn overs, which are deliberate increases that create holes in the fabric.

When incorporating pattern stitches into your scarf, it’s essential to follow knitting charts or written instructions to ensure you’re executing the pattern correctly. Take your time and practice the stitch pattern on a swatch before applying it to your entire scarf.

Remember to consider the desired width and length of your scarf when adding pattern stitches. Some stitch patterns may naturally make the fabric wider or narrower, so it’s essential to swatch and measure to achieve the desired dimensions.

If you’re unsure about adding pattern stitches on your own, consider using a knitting pattern that includes the stitch design you want. Knitting patterns provide step-by-step instructions and often include helpful tips and diagrams to assist you in achieving the desired look.

Example: Seed Stitch Pattern

Seed stitch is an easy and popular pattern stitch that adds texture to your scarf. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Start with an odd number of stitches.
  2. Row 1: Knit 1, purl 1. Repeat across the row.
  3. Row 2: Purl 1, knit 1. Repeat across the row.
  4. Repeat rows 1 and 2 until your scarf reaches your desired length.

The seed stitch pattern creates a fabric with raised bumps that are evenly distributed across the surface. It’s a great choice for adding texture to a simple knit scarf.

Creating a Border

After you have finished knitting your scarf, it’s time to add a border to give it a polished and professional look. Here are step-by-step instructions on how to create a border for your knit scarf:

  1. Decide on the width of your border. This will depend on your personal preference and the size of your scarf. A common width is around 2-3 inches.
  2. Choose a contrasting color of yarn for your border. This will make it stand out and add visual interest to your scarf.
  3. Start by picking up stitches along one edge of your scarf. Insert your knitting needle into the first stitch, yarn over, and pull the loop through to create a new stitch on your needle. Continue this process until you have picked up stitches along the entire edge.
  4. Knit the first row of your border using the picked-up stitches. You can use a simple stitch pattern, such as garter stitch (knit every row), or experiment with other stitch patterns like ribbing or seed stitch.
  5. Continue knitting the border rows until you have reached your desired width. Remember to keep the tension consistent to ensure a neat and even border.
  6. Once you have finished knitting the border, bind off your stitches to secure the edge. Cut the yarn, leaving a tail long enough to weave in later.
  7. Repeat the same process for the remaining edges of your scarf, if desired.

Once you have added the border to all edges of your scarf, take the time to weave in any loose ends and block your finished piece to give it a professional and polished look. Enjoy wearing your beautifully finished knit scarf!

Binding Off

Once you’ve finished knitting your scarf, it’s important to properly bind off to give it a clean and finished edge. Follow these steps to bind off your knit scarf like a pro:

  1. Start by knitting the first two stitches as you normally would.
  2. Using the tip of the left knitting needle, lift the first stitch over the second stitch and off the right knitting needle. This secures the first stitch and creates a new stitch on the right needle.
  3. Knit the next stitch as usual.
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you have one stitch remaining on the right needle.
  5. Cut the working yarn, leaving a tail that is about 6-8 inches long.
  6. Using a crochet hook or your fingers, thread the tail through the last stitch and pull tight to secure.

Now your scarf is bound off and ready to be worn or gifted! Make sure to weave in any remaining loose ends and steam block your scarf for a polished look.

Blocking and Finishing the Scarf

Blocking your finished knit scarf is an important step to give it a polished and professional look. Blocking helps to even out the stitches, relax the fibers, and shape the scarf to its desired dimensions.

Materials needed:

  • Finished knit scarf
  • Blocking mat
  • Pins
  • Spray bottle with water or steam iron

1. Prepare the Blocking Area

Choose a clean and flat surface to use as your blocking area. Lay down a blocking mat or a clean towel to protect your surface from moisture. Ensure that your surface is large enough to lay out your scarf and have it fully stretched out.

2. Soak or Mist the Scarf

If your scarf is made of natural fibers like wool or alpaca, it is best to soak it in cool water for about 15 to 20 minutes. Gently squeeze out the excess water without wringing or twisting the scarf. For synthetic fibers or delicate yarns, you can mist the scarf with water using a spray bottle.

3. Lay Out the Scarf

Place the scarf flat on the blocking mat, ensuring it is evenly spread out without any wrinkles or folds. Use your fingers to gently stretch the scarf to its desired dimensions, making sure to maintain an even tension throughout.

4. Pinning

Starting at one end, use rust-proof pins to secure the edges of the scarf to the blocking mat. Place pins every few inches along the edges to keep the scarf in place. If you have a lace pattern or specific design elements, pin them out to highlight the pattern.

5. Allow to Dry

Leave the scarf undisturbed on the blocking mat until it is completely dry. This can take anywhere from a few hours to a day or two, depending on the yarn and humidity levels.

6. Remove the Pins

Once the scarf is fully dry, carefully remove the pins from the blocking mat. Take care not to snag or damage the yarn while removing the pins.

7. Final Touches

If needed, steam the scarf with an iron set to the appropriate temperature for the yarn you used. Gently press the iron over the scarf without applying too much pressure. This will help to further shape and smooth out the scarf.

Your knit scarf is now complete and ready to be worn or gifted! Blocking not only adds a professional touch but also helps to improve the drape and overall appearance of your finished piece.


What materials do I need to finish a knit scarf?

To finish a knit scarf, you will need a tapestry needle, scissors, and yarn in a coordinating color.

Should I block my knit scarf before finishing?

Yes, it is recommended to block your knit scarf before finishing. Blocking helps to even out the stitches and give your scarf a polished look.

What is the best way to weave in the ends of my knit scarf?

To weave in the ends of your knit scarf, thread the yarn tail onto a tapestry needle and weave it in and out of the stitches on the back of the work. Make sure to secure the end by weaving it through multiple stitches before cutting off the excess.

Can I add fringe to my knit scarf?

Yes, you can definitely add fringe to your knit scarf. To do so, cut lengths of yarn, fold them in half, and attach them to the ends of the scarf using a crochet hook or tapestry needle.

How do I add a decorative edging to my knit scarf?

To add a decorative edging to your knit scarf, you can use techniques such as picot, scallop, or ribbing. You will need to pick up stitches along the edge of the scarf and then work the chosen edging pattern.

What is the best way to care for my finished knit scarf?

To care for your finished knit scarf, it is best to hand wash it in lukewarm water using a mild detergent. Gently squeeze out the excess water and lay it flat to dry. Avoid hanging or twisting the scarf to prevent stretching.

Do I need to wash and block my finished scarf again after each use?

No, you do not need to wash and block your finished scarf after each use. However, if it becomes soiled or stretched out, it is advisable to wash and block it again to restore its shape and appearance.


How to CAST ON Knitting for Total Beginners

Learn how to crochet Mouse Applique with this Step by Step Free Pattern Complete with Beginner Tips

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *