Fall is a tricky time in Virginia. Some years the weather can be hot and muggy through October and other times cooler air and changing leaves ride in on the coattails of August. I was keeping my fingers crossed for hot and muggy this year (I’m weird, I know) but it’s looking like this might be another cool fall possibly followed by a rough winter.
While I could use another month of summer, if it means I get to drink coffee without breaking a sweat and sleep with the windows open, I’ll roll with it.
I picked up some cute, gauzy fabric on sale last year and had planned to make a scarf with it. Then I hid it in the back of my closet and completely forgot about it. It was kind of like finding a long-forgotten $20 in a coat pocket when I stumbled on it last week, so I wasted no time in ringing in the change of season with this one-yard-wonder.
Although it's a bit light for fall, it’s surprisingly warm when things get chilly but not so warm that you completely regret it come noon, which is necessary given the temperature swings we experience here. If you happen to live some place colder, feel free to make this using heavier cotton or maybe a soft tweed to warm it up a bit.
(Is it just me or do the tassels make everything better? Tassels are totally like mullets of the clothing world. All business in the front, party in the back)
1 yard cotton voile fabric
5 skeins embroidery floss
Wide-eye needle (big enough to pass embroidery floss through)
Fold your fabric in half width-wise and press the fold with an iron. Cut fabric in half along the fold to create two 36 inch x 28 inch pieces (my fabric was 56 inches wide so when I cut it was 28 inches. Your measurements could be slightly different).
Next you’re going to sew the two pieces together along a 28-inch side using a French seam. I am by no means an expert at making a French seam since this was my first go at it, but don’t let the name fool you. It was incredibly easy. I was, however, unable to snap photos of this part because I was too busy pinning and folding and sewing.
Go here for step-by-step instructions with photos or just follow along below without photos.
Sew a French seam:
- Put the two pieces of fabric together, wrong sides facing each other, and pin along a 28-inch side. Sew together using a 1/4 inch seam allowance.
- Trim your seam allowance close to the seam.
- Unfold your fabric so you have one long piece and press the seam allowance with an iron.
- Now fold your fabric along the 28-inch seam so that the two right sides are together. Press this new fold.
- Stitch again along the fold using a 3/8 inch seam allowance, enclosing the raw edge.
- Unfold your fabric and press the seam so it lies flat to one side.
Hem the edges:
- Now that you have one long fabric panel, trim off ½ inch from the selvage edges on both sides.
- Hem the sides. Press one of the long raw sides ½ inch twice towards the wrong side of the scarf and pin the fold into place. Edgestitch this fold down. Do the same with the other opposite side, followed by both ends.
Use a Blanket Stitch to finish off the edges:
- On the wrong side of the fabric (see above, left), in the corner starting just above the hem, bring the needle out through the fabric at the fold.
- Turn the fabric over so the right side is facing you (see above, middle). Starting 1/3 inch from your previous stitch, do the same blanket stitch, this time from the front of the fabric, making sure to loop the thread under the needle.
- With the right side of the fabric still facing up, continue doing this around all 4 sides of the scarf. It should look like the image on the right. Since the fabric is so lightweight, be sure not to pull your stitch too tight or you will pucker the fabric. You want your edges to still lay nice and flat when you're done.
Last but not least, we'll gussy it up with tassels.
- Cut a piece of embroidery thread about 5 inches long. Set aside.
- From the skein, pull out a long thread (I made mine about 2 arm lengths long) and wrap it around your hand until you have achieved the desired thickness.
- Remove the thread from your hand and tie the short thread (from step one) tightly so the bunch is gathered at one end.
- Cut your gathered thread from the skein leaving a long tail.
- Using this tail, bind the neck of the tassel. Secure the neck by knotting it and then incorporate this thread into the body of the tassel along with the other threads.
- Cut open the end of the bundle and trim any stray threads so they are all the same length.
Attach your tassels to each corner of the scarf. Thread one end of the loose top thread through a wide-eyed needle. From the front side of your scarf, bring your needle through to the back. Tie the two ends of the thread together in a tight knot and trim excess thread.