Beginnings Scarf – Step-by-Step Tutorial.

Beginnings Scarf – Step-by-Step Tutorial

By Erron Anderson

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What do you do if you want to learn to knit, but you have no one to teach you?  You learn! The more knitters I meet, the more I’m surprised at how many are self-taught.   I taught myself to knit from a Leisure Arts booklet and I would have loved to have more detail in in the illustrations.

I have for you a simple and stylish pattern to make a garter stitch scarf. With step-by-step photos to help teach you how to knit it as you go!  From cast on to cast off.  If you already know how to knit the pattern is Beginnings without the lengthy tutorial.

This tutorial teaches you the Continental or German method. This is the method I primarily use. There is also the English or American method.  If you’re just learning it doesn’t matter which you chose.  There are a couple of reasons I like knitting Continental: It’s faster to knit this way, if you plan to learn to crochet, or you already know how, you’ll hold your yarn in your left hand for both crafts, and it causes less hand strain. Eventually, I recommend learning both methods.

Things you’ll need.


Size 9 US –5.5 mm needles Sewing needle
4 buttons Thread
Darning needle 130 yards or 128 meters Berrocco Pure Merino in Red, or any worsted weight yarn

A note on yarn and needles:

If you are going to be wearing this against your skin pick a soft and non-irritating yarn.

Wooden or plastic needles are great choices for beginners.  The yarn does not slide off the tips as easily as it does with metal needles.  If you only have metal needles, don’t worry, you can learn on any type of needle.

Let’s learn:

Casting On: Knit Cast On:

Pattern Instructions: Cast on 22 stitches using the knit-on cast on method.

Start by making a slip knot with the cut side of the yarn about 6-8 inches long


Place the slip knot on a knitting needle, with the tail end of the loop to the front and the working yarn to the back.

A1.Img0301 A2. Img0302

A3.Img0303 A4. Img0304

*Note in these pictures you can see I am using double pointed needles. I highly recommend not using this type of needle if you are a beginner, as the yarn easily can slip off the back end. I have used these needles because my standard straights are dark in colour and they made seeing the stitches difficult

A1.) With the needle in your left hand run the working yarn over the inside of your bottom three fingers. A2.) Wrap the working yarn closest to the knitting needle between your index and middle finger then around the back of your index finger over the top.  A3.) Many people like to wrap the bottom of the working yarn around their pinky finger to help keep an even tension.  I find this unnecessary.  In time you’ll find the right way for you.  Experiment with both ways. If the working yarn seems too loose, wrap around your pinky finger, if it is rather tight omit it. A4.) Place the knitting needle in your left hand and snug up the working yarn.  It shouldn’t feel tight over your fingers, nor should there be any excess.



B1.) Close your hand around the needle with the slip stitch at the front of the needle. B2.) Place your second needle in your right hand, place the tip of the right needle on the left side of the loop on the left needle. B3.) Slide the right needle into the loop, between the front and back of the loop B4.) Draw the needle up to expose the shaft. The right needle crosses behind the left needle.



C1.) Draw up your working yarn. I do this by pulling my index finger away from the needle, to expose a length of yarn. C2.) Using your right needle draw it under the working yarn from the right to the left.  C3.) Do not hook the yarn by crossing your needle over the working yarn and drawing your needle under the working yarn from left to right, as this results in twisted stitches. C4.) Having picked up the working yarn on your right needle pull it through the loop you inserted the needle into in the first place.



D.)Continue to pull out a rather long loop. D2.)Using your right needle slip the drawn out loop onto to the left needle. D3.) Withdraw the right needle D4.) Snug up the loop by pulling on the working yarn (not so that it is very tight, just snug enough that it is not flopping around on the needle).





E1.)Insert your right hand needle from left to right through the front of the loop closest to the tip of the needle. E2.)Draw up your working yarn and hook the right needle under the working yarn from right to left. E3.) Pull the yarn you just hooked through the loop towards you. (steps 1-3 is called knitting into the stitch) E4.) Pull out a loop long enough to slip it over the tip of the left handed needle. E5.) Snug up the loop, and there you have one more cast on stitch.  E6.) Repeat until there are a total of 22 stitches on the left handed needle.

Now you have completed a knit cast on.  You’re ready to start knitting some length.

Knit Stitch:

Pattern Instructions: Rows 1-152: Knit to end.

A common beginners mistake:


F1.) When starting a row it is very important to pull the working yarn under the needle and to the back. F2.) Commonly, beginners may pull the yarn over the needle and to the back. This draws up the stitch from the row beneath, and you may knit into the front and back of this loop rather than the stitch you ought to knit into. Because you have essentially made an extra stitch each time you do this, you add 1 stitch to the 22 you should have.  If your rows keep mysteriously gaining a stitch, this may be the cause.



Starting the next row is much the same as casting on, in fact, it’s exactly the same which is why the knit cast on is the perfect one to learn first.   I realize this is getting repetitive, but remember, practice makes perfect, and I did say step-by-step instructions.

G1.)With the cast on stitches still on the needle in your left hand. G2.) Slide the right handed needle in to the first stitch. G3.) Hook the yarn slipping under from the right side of the working yarn. G4.) Pull the loop through towards you. Do not slip it onto the left needle as if to cast on. This time…


H1.) Slide the stitch that you have just pulled the hooked loop through (green arrow) up to the tip of the needle (the blue arrow is the second stitch on the needle) H2.) Slide it right off the left handed needle being careful not to pull the stitch next to it (blue arrow) off as well. You now have 21 stitches on your left needle and 1 on the right.



I1.) Slide the right needle from the left side through the first stitch on the left needle the first stitch on the left needle (this was the blue arrow). I2.) Knit into the stitch. I3.) Slide the stitch you just knit into up to the tip of the left needle. I4.) Pop off the stitch from the left needle.

Repeat to the end of the row, so that all 22 stitches are on the right handed needle.

Starting the Next Row. (turning your work)

J1.front of the ScarfJ2.Front and Back2


J1.) Hold the right hand needle in your right hand after you have knit all 22 stitches J2.) Transfer to your left hand by moving the front of your scarf towards the palm of your left hand J3.) With the back of the work now facing you, place the needle in your left hand. J4.) Close your hand around the needle, and thread the yarn through your fingers as in A1-A4



K1-K4:  Knit to the end of the row, turn your work, and repeat for 150 more rows (152 total rows)


Here is what you should end up with.  You may be wondering why it is bumpy on both sides instead of a series of lined up v’s like the knit sweater you may be wearing.  What most people think of as a knit is actually called stockinette.  It is achieved by knitting one row (you know how to do that now), and then purling one row (I’ll show you how to do that in another tutorial).  When you knit both sides (or purl both sides for that matter) you end up with a row of v’s, then a row of bumps, and so on and so on.  That is because when you knit a row you are creating a row of ,v’s on the side towards you, and a row of bumps on the side away from you. When you flip the fabric to knit the next row, you are creating a row of v’s on top of the back side (the bumps) of the row you previously knit.  Garter stitch is the name of the fabric you create when you knit every row.  It is wonderfully stretchy and creates a warm fabric.  Perfect for our little neckie scarf.

Making Button Holes:

Pattern Instructions: Row 153: Knit 5, yarn over, knit 2 together, knit 9, yarn over, knit 2 together, knit 4.




L1.) Knit the first 5 stitches. L2.) Create a yarn over by wrapping the working yarn over the front of the needle and holding it in back. (this creates 1 extra stitch) L3.)Knit 2 together by sliding the right needle in to the first 2 stitches on the left needle. L4.) Knit together as you would one stitch. (this reduces by 1 stitch) L5.) Draw the 2 stitches together to the end of the left needle and pop them off. L6.) You have created a button hole! See how the space where you made a yarn over has a gap?



M1.)Knit 9 stitches until you have 6 stitches left on the left needle. M2.) Yarn Over: draw the working yarn over the right needle front to back. M3.) Knit 2 together: knit 2 stitches at the same time as you would 1.  M4.) Second button hole done! Knit to the end of the row.



N1-N4.) Turn your work, and knit the next row. When you come to the yarn overs you made in the previous row knit as normal as shown in the photos.

Pattern instructions: Row 154- 170: Knit to the end of the row.



Knit 17 more rows as in I1-I4 or K1-K4

Pattern Instructions: Row 171: Knit 5, yarn over, knit 2 together, knit 9, yarn over, knit 2 together, knit 4.



O1.) Knit 5. Yarn over (draw yarn over the right needle front to back) O2-O3.) Knit 2 stitches together at the same time as you would 1. Knit 9 stitches until you have 6 stitches remaining on your left needle.  Repeat Yarn over, Knit 2 together. O4.) You have created the third and fourth button holes. Knit the remaining 4 stitches.

Pattern Instructions: Row 172-179: Knit to the end.



K1-K4.) You remember how by now. Don’t forget to knit the yarn overs as a regular stitch (see N1-N4).

Pattern Instructions: Row 180: Bind off knit wise.



P1.) Knit 2 stitches. P2.) Using your left needle insert in in to the furthest right stitch on the right handed needle from left to right. P3.) Draw the stitch you just picked up with the left needle, up and over the other stitch and off the right handed needle. P4) Slip the left handed needle out of the loop you just lifted off the right handed needle. Now you have just one stitch on the right handed needle.


Q1.) Knit another stitch so you have two stitches on the right handed needle again. Q2.) Using your left needle lift the 1 stitch over the newly made stitch, and off the needle. Withdraw the left handed needle from the loop.

Repeat Q1-Q2 over and over until you have one stitch remaining.

R1.Img0439 R2. Img0442

R1.) Snip the working yarn so that it is about 8 inches long. R2) Using the right needle draw the loop up until the loop is pulled right through, and there is no longer a loop, but a length of yarn hanging off your work instead.


Pattern Instructions: Weave in the ends and attach buttons.



S1.) Thread a darning needle on the length of yarn you just pulled through the last stitch of your knitting. S2.) From the back push the needle in the space between the first and second stitch. S3.) From the front push the needle between the second and third stitch. S4.) Repeat S2-S3 until you have woven between 3-5 stitches.


T1.) Once you have woven between a few stitches start weaving back toward where you started from. T2.) Once you reach the end trim the yarn as close to the scarf as possible.  Don’t pull the yarn taught or it will be shorter than you need and it will stick out.


U1.) Fold the scarf over as shown with the button hole end on top of the beginning of the scarf. Place the buttons you are contemplating over the button holes. U2.) I liked the silver. Using a sewing needle and thread sew the button on the spots under the button holes on the beginning of the scarf.


Seven ways to wear your Beginnings scarf:



You can find the standard pattern on as Beginnings

This tutorial will always be free online, however if you would like a PDF version to print, or save to your computer,  it can be purchased from Ravely for $3.00 CAD

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  1. Pingback: Beginnings | KnitLove

  2. I do agree with all the ideas you’ve presented on your post. They are really convincing and can definitely work. Nonetheless, the posts are very quick for beginners. May just you please lengthen them a bit from next time? Thank you for the post.

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    Just wondering, every time I see knitting, there are these random letters and numbers? Can you please make tutorial about what the numbers and letters are?

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    i love your work this is my first time trying to knit so thx for the help

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