Sewing Scout Scarves
Once the Scout troop leader found out I could sew – guess who was asked to make a batch of scarves?
I enjoy volunteering and help out organisations when I can, especially when it benefits my children in some way. Both my boys are in Scouts, one is now a Venturer and the youngest one is a Cub. The scarves I was given as a sample to follow were made with love but had more lines of stitching than needed and where things had been sewn into points the raw edges were still visible and prone to fraying.
I wanted to create a way to sew up lots of scarves reasonably quickly and nicely, so they would last for the Scouts they would in turn belong to. I came up with a way to sew the Scarves without doing unnecessary rows of stitching and keeping all raw edges hidden. A way that is easy to follow for all sewists wanting to help their local Scout Troops!
This method works well for our style of Scarf – with a wide trim on the two shorter sides. I managed to take photos as I made the last batch so I can show you step-by-step how I made them – sorry for the terribly wrinkly photos!
Things you need to sew up a Scout Scarf
Cotton / Poplin Fabric
Trim – webbing, ribbon or binding
Thread in the right colours
Scissors & Measuring Tape
For Scouts and older children cut the edge of the fabric at 90cm –
You should then be able to rip the fabric straight across.
Ripping it across the grain helps keep the scarf straight and in shape.
It’ll also help when it comes to sewing together.
For the smaller Cubs and Keas cut the fabric at 75cm and rip across.
For adults you can cut it at 110cm or as wide as the fabric is.
This just creates longer tails at the front when worn and looks
better longer on taller people.
Once you have your section of fabric cut, fold one top corner down
to the lower edge to form a triangle. Then trim off the extra fabric on the side.
Then cut the square in half, leaving you with two triangles – ready to become scarves!
The next step is to turn up each side by approx 2cm and iron them.
This helps make the sewing a lot faster.
All edges turned up 2cm and pressed in place.
The first sewing step is to fold back the sides on the right angled top corner.
Pinch where the sides meet.
Then sew across form where you’ve pinched to the point where the pressed lines meet.
Use the same colour thread as the scarf for the upper spool and bobbin.
Flatten the corner now sewn out to each side, then turn through. This will help it sit flatter.
This is what your top corner will look like after you’ve turned it through.
Sewing the side corners ( I always mix this one up lol)
Place the side over the long bottom edge, then sew across,
following the pressed fold of the bottom edge.
It’s important to get these ones right or the bottom edge can’t be sewn right.
These corners need to be trimmed a bit before turning.
Otherwise there’d be too much fabric trying to squish into the corner!
Just don’t trim too close or the fabric could fray or the corner come apart once turned.
Turn the corner though and push the point out with something blunt.
Next step is to turn under the bottom edge to finish the side.
The pressed fold makes it a lot easier.
Here’s where if you sew the side corners wrong, you can’t turn the bottom edge under.
The bottom edge looking nice and tidy.
Grab your trim and cut two pieces for each scarf at the length you cut your scarf – 75cm or 90cm.
Then sew the top corner by sewing the two pieces across at just over a 45 degree angle.
Here’s also where you switch your upper spool of thread to the same colour as your trim.
Leaving the bobbin the same as your scarf.
When you open the trim up after stitching it together,
the pieces should be at right angles to each other.
Fold back the raw edges so they are tucked under the trim when you sew it on.
Start at the very top right hand side of the trim and sew the edge of it down,
leaving a small amount (5mm) of scarf showing at the edge.
I like to use the edge of the foot as a guide.
Be careful when sewing it down not to stretch the trim or it will cause the fabric to pucker.
In some cases you may need to pull the fabric tight so the trim doesn’t pucker.
This can take a bit of trial & error to see what you need to fold firm to keep the
trim sitting flat on the scarf.
Please use pins if you need to.
When you get near the bottom edge, fold the trim under so it matches the angle of the bottom edge.
Trim the end a bit if it needs it.
Fold the raw edge under and up to the fold you made.
This way it’ll all be hidden once you sew it down.
Lift the presser foot and pivot to sew across the bottom edge of the trim.
Then lift the foot and pivot again to sew the other side of the trim back up to the top.
Then sew the other side as you have the first.
Start at the top and sew the outside side first so you can get the right
distance from the edge of the scarf.
Sew the bottom edge the same as the first one, just opposite!
Then you’re all finished!
The scarf is ready to be pressed and rolled, ready to be worn!
Hopefully those instructions are easy enough to follow,
please let me know if I need to explain something better or if I’m missing anything!
Scouts are such an awesome community of people who do so much for our youth. My kids have had so many great experiences in doing things I can’t offer them. They have learnt so much about not just camping and outdoors but about being part of a community, helping others and how to interact and socialise with different age groups and types of people in our community. Not just their usual school friends.
They run in most countries around the world – check out if there’s a Scout Den near you!
Here’s the link to Scouts New Zealand.