Thrifty Crafting: DIY Cowl Tutorial

Have you seen all the cowls on Etsy? Have you drooled all over them, like I have? Well today I have a handy little tutorial that might not cure your cowl-lust completely, but will go a long way toward satisfying it. Handmade cowls are adorable but they can be very expensive. Here’s a simple, thrifty way to get the look.

You’ll need to start with either a scarf of your own or a bit of fabric. I happen to own a hand-knitted rectangle given to me a few weeks ago by the talented Sarah Sphar. Okay, technically she gave it to Isobel to use as a baby doll blanket, but Mama swiped it in a fit of cowl-induced greed. You don’t need a hand-knit or crocheted swatch, though! You can make this with fabric just fine, so don’t be turned off by needing an actual doll blanket.  Some fabrics drape better than others, so play around with what you have. The swatch that Sarah sent us was approximately 19 by 22 inches.

Just so you know that a scrap of fabric isn’t even technically necessary, I made one using a scarf that I picked up at a church sale. Anthony declared it questionable at best but I knew better. I could see its cowl-potential through the fug.

Now that you have your material or swatch or scarf, I’m going to teach you four different types of cowls to make, but don’t stop there! You can make a slightly different style each time you put it together, so experiment! Oh, and I suppose I should mention that none of these styles are permanent, so you can take it off and give it back to your child or use it as a traditional scarf when you are through. No harm done.

First step for the blanket cowl is to fold it in half and drape it over your neck like you just spent hours and hours working out. Whew. Go you.

Then bring the two corners together and secure with two safety pins on the under side.

Twist the scarf around and adjust.

1. Leave one corner out like a bandana and add a vintage pin.

2. Leave both corners out so it covers the entire top of your shirt’s neckline. I especially love how this looks with a long sleeve shirt or thin sweater–it looks like part of the top itself.

3. Tuck the corners under and roll for a more traditional infinity or loop scarf look.

Now, say you have a chunky crocheted scarf? Just loop it around your neck and arrange it how you like it. Secure with a safety pin or two on the underside. If the pins show you can add a broach to cover it up.I haven’t had a problem with pins showing but I added a broach anyway.

Each time you wear it you can style it differently for a brand new look. It’s that easy! If you do this send me a photo on twitter or link to it in the comments. I’d love to see and share it!

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    • Carrie Anne says

      Thanks, Michelle! It really is and I can prove it because the moment I sat down Zorro started to knead it with his paws.

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