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Lightweight Infinity Scarf Sewing Tutorial

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This scarf pattern is pretty different from anything else I’ve seen because it uses two shorter pieces of material instead of one long one. You don’t always have pristine, long pieces of fabric, when you’re trying to ‘bust your stash!’ This project is great for those pretty cotton prints you can’t figure out what to do with but can’t quite get rid of, either. I hope you enjoy this lightweight infinity scarf sewing tutorial!

Convertible Infinity Scarf Sewing Tutorial

For an attractive seam and finished edges, I folded over and hemmed the short ends. This also makes the snaps more secure. The long seams are simply rolled hems done on the serger. If you don’t have a serger, you can still follow the same basic pattern – just turn the short ends under twice and hem and either turn the long ends under the same way or do a rolled hem by hand. I actually prefer hand rolled hems on lighter fabrics to all that ironing and stitching for a more traditional hem!

As I mentioned above, I photographed this tutorial in June but am just now sharing it. This turned out to be the most fun thing about my new scarf because it allowed me to go play around at the beach while Papi Chulo took photos. He is…learning the camera, so some of the photos are pretty funny! But hey, we all start somewhere and I’m so glad he’s enjoying learning a DSLR, even if sometimes I think he’s doing it just to capture me in silly poses, like just after being surprised by a wave…

convertible lightweight infinity scarf

We had a great time being goofy, and then we spread out our towel to watch the sun set behind the mountains. I wish I’d brought my tripod because the almost full moon was simultaneously rising in the East.

moonrise

But enough of that! Let’s move on to what you need to make your own convertible infinity scarf. Maybe I should start by explaining the name – this scarf has snaps along each open narrow end so you can either wear it un-snapped like a traditional scarf or snap it together for use as an infinity scarf.

I do not cover using a serger in depth. If you own own one and don’t know how to change the tension dials or do a rolled hem, check your machine’s instructions for specific directions. If you don’t own a serger, just seam and hem everything in your favorite manner on a “regular” sewing machine. If you don’t have access to a machine at all, that’s totally okay! As I mentioned above, I like hand rolled hems and you can totally sew the entire scarf by hand.

Materials for sewing an infinity scarf

  • Fabric – My favorite online source is Fabric.com. I used two 32″x15″ pieces of a designer print cotton. Your scarf can be one piece or even three or four pieces! Just go with what you have on hand. My scarf is relatively short, but you can make it longer. You can also use heavier weight fabrics instead of a cotton print. I’m a huge fan of customizing projects to meet your personal needs!
  • Thread
  • Self-healing cutting mat and rotary cutter (preferable) or cardboard cutting mat and fabric scissors. I use this rotary cutting set because it’s a great bargain.
  • Snaps and snap applicator – I used 8 pairs of snaps
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Temporary fabric marker or tailor’s chalk
  • Large, blunt needle (only necessary if you’re serging)

I tried making a scarf with sew-on metal snaps, but I really didn’t like them. The plastic snaps are, in my opinion, easier to instal and more attractive. I used gold-toned snaps from this set of metallic-toned KAM snaps and this set of KAM snap pliers.

Infinity scarf sewing tutorial

1. Iron your fabric! Seriously, iron it, even if you think it isn’t wrinkly. Your finished scarf will be much nicer as a result.

2. Cut your fabric. This is pretty easy if you have a rotary cutting set! Simply cut a couple long rectangles. As noted above, each of my pieces was 32″x15″.

fabric for day of the lightweight convertible infinity scarf

3. If you don’t have a rotary cutting set, lay you fabric out on a cardboard mat with a grid, like the one shown below, and carefully cut with fabric scissors.

cutting fabric on cardboard mat

If possible, try to line your fabric up so the pattern will be continuous across the back seam. This may not be possible – it wasn’t for me because of the large print and limited amount of fabric – but it makes the finished scarf look so nice!

4. Once you have your fabric cut, pin it, “right” sides together, along the center back line.

pin short ends, right sides together

5. Set up your serger to flatlock. If you haven’t done this before, check out this fabulous guide to flatlocking on your serger. Basically, only use one needle, put your lower looper tension really tight, and keep your needle thread tension very loose. You’ll probably want to practice a little on scraps to ensure the tensions are correct before moving on to your scarf!  I’ll show you a bit more on hemming with the flatlock stitch in a few steps.

6. Serge along the pinned edge.

stitch with serger

7. Using a large, blunt needle, work the tail ends of the thread under the stitches, just like with any other serged seam.

secure thread tail

8. Pull the two pieces of fabric apart to create a ladder-like appearance. The raw ends will be encased in the stitching – neat!

pull apart to create characteristic ladder appearance

9. Apply a simple rolled hem down both long edges.

roll hem

10. Heat your iron again and fold each remaining raw, short edge down/in 1.5″.

measure down an inch and a half on each short end

11. Next, fold the fabric again, “accordion style,” so that the raw edge lines up with the first fold. This little gallery below demonstrates what to do:

12. Serge along this outside edge where the fold and raw edge meet, then secure the thread tails and pull the fabric apart to separate, just as before. Repeat for the second short side.

flatlock the short ends

13. All that’s left is applying the snaps! Measure the short ends of you scarf to see what their finished length is.

measure the short ends of the scarf

14. Decide how many snaps you want to use then mark where they will need to go. As you can see in the picture above, I started my measurement about 1/4″ in from the edge of the scarf because that’s where I wanted my first snap. I then marked every 2″ right down to the 14″ mark on my ruler. Mark the opposite side, making sure to use the same spacing between snaps.

measure and mark where to place snaps

15. Apply your snaps. To streamline the process, apply all the male snaps along one edge first.

place male ends of snaps

16. Make sure the marks you made still look aligned with the snaps, then apply the female snaps down the opposite side.

then female ends

That’s it! Your is ready to wear! Enjoy it as a traditional scarf:

back of Day of the Dead Scarf

Or get creative with it as an infinity scarf:

wearing as an infinity scarf

How do you prefer to sew? Do you love your serger? Stick to a classic sewing machine? Are you a dedicated hand seweist? Or, like me, do you a bit of all three!?

natashalh

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{ 6 comments… add one }
  • Marieken November 2, 2015, 08:21

    Looks like you had fun at the beach taking photos. I love the print of the fabric.

    • Natashalh November 2, 2015, 10:40

      It was really nice! And thank you, I like the fabric, too. =)

  • D. Renée Wilson October 30, 2015, 05:31

    Your scarf is so cute! I’m an atrocious seamstress, and I’m proud to admit it.
    My machine stays in the top of my studio closet. It just means I can support others. 😉
    That’s wonderful that your husband is learning the DSLR! Having someone else to take photos must be so handy. 🙂

    • Natashalh October 30, 2015, 07:45

      I did not sew at all until I went to college. I actively resisted learning to sew until then! It is really great my husband is learning how to use the camera and he seems to be enjoying it.

  • Duni October 29, 2015, 22:12

    First, the beach photos are wonderful. I think your hubby did a great job 🙂
    I can’t throw out any fabric, even the smallest bits and I have tons of leftovers…
    This is such a cute project to use it up! And the print on the fabric is right up your street 🙂

    • Natashalh October 30, 2015, 07:44

      Thank you! And I know what you mean. I did recently get rid of some scraps that I had to force myself to admit were useless. It was hard, though, even when the pieces were only a couple inches, oddly shaped, and only cost $5 a yard at the store down the road to begin with!

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