• One fat quarter of cotton fabric
  • Four additional 6.5cm (2 1⁄2in) strips of plain or patterned fabric the same length as your fat quarter
  • Cotton thread in matching colour for machine piecing
  • Beads and sequins for extra embellishment

Note: you can cut the strips any width to suit yourself. You could pick out several colours from the fat quarter or perhaps one colour but several values from light to dark.

Finished Size

Approx 11-13 x 130cm (41⁄4-5 x 53in)

Skill Level


You can download a copy of the original magazine pages for this project here, Necklines

Sheena explains how these scarves came into being: “I have many fat quarters in my stash which I really can’t bear to cut up into tiny pieces but I was inspired last December to make a scarf using one of my favourite fat quarters, together with strips of co-ordinating fabrics. I was so pleased with my first effort that several of my quilting friends received scarves for Christmas presents. It was really challenging and most enjoyable trying to match the right fabrics for their personalities and colour tastes.”

How to make the scarf

Figure 1
Figure 1: Sewing and cutting plan for scarf
  1. Cut four strips of co-ordinating fabrics 6.5cm (2 1⁄2in) wide x the same width as your fat quarter.
  2. Pin the pairs of strips right sides together. Using stitch length 2.5 on your machine, and lining up the edge of the presser foot with the raw edges of the strips, piece the strips together in pairs, starting and ending with a few backstitches. Press seams open then piece the pairs together and press the seam open again.
  3. Piece the strips to your fat quarter, press the seam open then cut into two pieces lengthwise. See Figure 1.
  4. Piece the short ends of the fat quarter together and press the seam open. This join will lie at the back of your neck when you wear the scarf. See Figure 2.
Figure 2
Figure 2: Two pieces joined
  1. Fold the scarf lengthwise, right sides together and pin to hold. Match the seams of the strips at both ends, pin at each side of the seams to stop the fabric moving then put a few pins along the long sides of the scarf. Stitch one short end and the long side. Start and finish with some backstitches. See Figure 3.
Figure 3
Figure 3: Sewing the long seam
  1. When stitching the corner, instead of stitching a right angle, stitch across the corner, then cut off the excess fabric to ensure a sharp corner can be poked out with a pair of scissors when the scarf is turned right sides out. See Figure 4.
Figure 4
Figure 4: Sewing the corner
  1. Press the seams open before putting your hand in the tube and turning right sides out. Finger press the seams flat and iron the whole scarf. Fold the seam allowance of the open end to the inside and use an insertion stitch to close. You can use ladder or fishbone stitch. See Figure 5.
Figure 5
Figure 5: Sewing the Fishbone stitch
  1. Finally embellish the strips and / or short edges with beads, sequins or buttons. Enjoy wearing your scarf or seeing your friends wearing your creations!

Handy Hint! If you hang a measuring tape around your neck you can decide how long you want it to be and work out how many and what width of strips to cut.

First published in Popular Patchwork December 2006