Sewing + Quilting

How to Make a Blanket Scarf

green plaid blanket scarf

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There’s something about being bundled up in a blanket scarf that signals the true start of the Fall season, don’t you think?  There are so many reasons to love Fall, but I’m not going to lie – I love Fall clothes.  There’s something about being warm and cozy without breaking a sweat!  And at the top of the cozy charts, next to wool socks, are scarves.  I’m not sure I could ever have enough scarves, but after a while, they all start to look the same.  So I thought to myself – why not make a blanket scarf out of fabric that I love?  And that’s exactly what I did! 

And the best part?  They not only add to my own coziness, but they make a great gift.



What is a blanket scarf?

Simply put, a blanket scarf is a scarf that is nearly the size of a small blanket!  They are typically square in shape and measure roughly 50″.  Of course, they can be slightly smaller or bigger, but if you keep the 50″ measurement as a guideline, it will serve its purpose well.  Blanket scarves are multi-functional pieces, mainly because of their size.  They can be tied in a multitude of ways, used as a throw around your shoulders, or even folded as a lap blanket.  I do love the flexibility of blanket scarves! 

I chose these fabrics because they are all woven and the colours work so well with my wardrobe!

What kind of fabric should you use?

Ideally, you want to find a fabric that is woven, especially if it is a print.  Using a fabric that has a very clear right and wrong side is doable, but it may look odd when you wrap your scarf around yourself.  The best types of fabric to use are woven flannel or cotton.  Woven suiting can work as well. 

You can find so many gorgeous colours, patterns and plaids at your local fabric stores, or even online.  Be sure that the fabric you choose will be able to fray on the edges.  For this reason, you wouldn’t want to choose polyester or rayon blends.  By sticking with flannel or cotton, you can be sure to get the frayed-edge effect that looks so great on a blanket scarf.

A woven fabric, like this one, will look virtually the same on the front and back of the cloth.

How much fabric do you need?

Generally speaking, go for two metres (or two yards).  You can go up to 2.5 metres, but I wouldn’t go any bigger than that.  To get a true 50″ square, you’ll need to find 60″ fabric.  If all you can find is 45″, that’s okay too – just get 2.5 metres of it.  If your scarf isn’t a true square, that’s okay.  What you are really going for is fullness – the more fabric you use, the cozier you will feel.  But trust me when I say, there is such a thing as TOO MUCH scarf!  You want to be warm, not invisible!

I went to my local fabric store and found some really great flannels and suiting fabrics, four plaid prints in all.  They were all approximately 60″ wide, so I got 1.5 metres of each fabric.  My original plan was to make blanket scarves out of all four fabrics, but I think I might change it up!  Stay tuned for those …


What other supplies do you need?

This is a quick and easy project and you don’t need a lot of supplies.  Here’s what you’ll need to make your blanket scarf:

  • Fabric – woven solids or prints, such as flannel, cotton or suiting.  Look for woven, not printed, so that both sides look the same.  Approximately 1.5 metres.
  • Thread to match
  • Sewing Machine (if you choose to stitch as I did)
  • Scissors or Rotary Cutter & Rotary Cutting Mat
  • Pin (a straight pin or safety pin will do)



How do you make a blanket scarf?

This project honestly couldn’t be easier!  I don’t want to call my blanket scarf a no-sew project, but there really is very little stitching to do.  

Here are the quick and easy steps to making your blanket scarf:

Start by measuring and cutting your square. 

As I said, the common size for a blanket scarf is a 50″ square.  But when making your own, you can choose what size best suits you.  I’m fairly tall and broad-shouldered, so 50″ works on me.  My sister, on the other hand, is barely over 5 feet tall and very delicate.  She would be swallowed up in a 50″ scarf.  For her, I think I would cut it down to 45″ or even 40″.  No smaller though; otherwise, you lose the cozy look! 

Because I’m working with plaids, I simply measured my 50″ square on the lines and used the weave as my cutting guide.

Make sure that you measure the squares rather than just cutting on the lines – my plaid print looked square but was in fact rectangular.

Determine how much fringe you would like on the edge of your scarf.

I don’t like a very long fringe on my scarves unless it’s knitted.  Because we are working with woven fabric, keep in mind that your fringe will be very fine.  I decided that ¼” would suit me just fine.  So with that in mind, I stitched ¼” from the edge all the way around my fabric.  Don’t make any folds, you are only stitching one layer, all the way around.  This stitch line will keep your scarf from fraying further when you wash it.

If you like a slightly longer fringe than I do, by all means, customize it to your taste!  I wouldn’t recommend going any longer than 1″, though, as the threads will easily tangle and look messy.



Create a frayed edge.

This next step is simple but can be a little time-consuming, depending on the weave of your fabric.  If you are using a fairly loose weave, your fabric will fray easily.  The flannel plaid I used was a fairly tight weave, but not super hard to work with for this step.

Using a pin, pull one thread from the weave of the fabric and unravel the length.  Then the next, and the next, and so on.  You can either work solely on one side at a time or rotate your scarf as you go, working on all four sides in succession.  I did a blend of these two methods – I unravelled about 5 threads per side before spinning to the next side.

When working on the outermost edges of your fabric, you may be able to pull two or even three threads at a time, but as you get closer to your stitching line, you’ll need to be doing one at a time.  

All told, it probably took me about 45 minutes to fray the edges of a 50″ blanket scarf to ¼”.  Allow yourself more time for a wider fringe.  Seems like the perfect time to put on Netflix and watch an episode or two of your favourite show!  

As you pull the threads, either 1, 2 or 3 at a time, you will begin to see the fringe forming.


There is so much to love about blanket scarves!  My favourite thing about these, however, is how inexpensive it can be to make a blanket scarf!  I bought 6 metres of fabric (1.5 metres of 4 prints) for only $47 before tax!  That means that if I only made one scarf out of each piece of fabric, each scarf cost me a little under $12!  That’s a great bargain and a great idea for a frugal holiday gift!  By choosing my own fabric, I get exactly what I want, not just what the stores have available.  Love it!  And it only took about an hour in total to make one scarf.  Getting a season’s worth of scarves for under $50 and an afternoon of work sounds pretty good to me!

Are you ready to make a blanket scarf for yourself?  Trust me, the hard part will be making only one!

For some other fun sewing projects, you can check out these posts:

How to Make a Quilt in a Day

How to Make Pillow Covers in 15 Minutes

Quick and Easy King Pillow Cases

How to Make a Quick and Easy Table Runner



Want to remember this?  Save How to Make a Blanket Scarf to your favourite Pinterest boards!


green plaid blanket scarf on orange sweatshirt


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