Tutorial: Spool-Knitted Infinity Scarf

Updated on May 29, 2017

Have You Ever Wondered What to Do with I-Cord?

I-cord is another name for the yarn tube you make when you french knit or use your knitting nancy. It's fun and easy to do, but then what? This page is dedicated to "what to do with i-cord."

I recently saw a woman wearing a loopy infinity scarf and immediately thought, I can make that. And, even though I had never done any spool knitting before, I created the scarf pictured here in just a few days. I will share a tutorial for my adaptation of that loopy infinity scarf, plus... You know how on some DVDs, you can watch an alternative ending? This scarf has three alternative endings and they're all happy! The finishing techniques build on one another, so you choose which one you like best, or create your own (and hopefully share it with me so I can add it to this page for others to see).

All photos on this page are my own unless otherwise credited.

Do you enjoy spool knitting?

Do you enjoy spool knitting?

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Infinity Scarf Tutorial

Consider a Spool Knitter that Feels Good in Your Hand

Lion Brand Yarn 400-5-7002 Knitting Spool Knitter or French Knitter
Lion Brand Yarn 400-5-7002 Knitting Spool Knitter or French Knitter

I like a spool knitter that feels good in my hand, and they're affordable so you can test a few options before narrowing it down to the one that works best for you. I like this one because it's cute and small for traveling. There are other larger models made of plastic or wood that you might also consider. Click on this model to see more options that are similar, ranging from simple and practical to beautifully crafted.

Knitting on a 5-Peg Spool
Knitting on a 5-Peg Spool

Step 2: French Knit a Long Chain

You have more choices to make right at the start.

1) How many colors do you want? - I went for a variable multi-colored effect, so I chose 2 colors - 2 skeins of yarn - to knit with at the same time. This is a little more challenging, but was worth it to me.

2) How thick do you want your cord? - Mine is about 1 inch in diameter. I used 5 pegs on my spool, which adds thickness. Using two colors of yarn also added some bulk.

3) How long do you want your cord? - Don't worry about measuring it. I just took 2 new skeins of yarn (223 yards long) and kept going until one was gone. However, if your cord is thinner (i.e. knitting on fewer pegs and/or using only one color of yarn), a skein will make a longer chain. So do you want a longer, skinnier chain with more loops, or a shorter, thicker chain with fewer loops?

When you have these questions answered, get going. Use the link below if you don't know how to get started. After you've learned to do the basic "stitch" it's simple repetition, so just keep stitching.

Step 3: Keep Going

Things to do while your hands keep working.

1) Listen to a book on tape.

2) Check out some new stations on Spotify.

3) Have a craft night with some friends.

4) Catch up on your DVR (if you can watch and knit at the same time).

5) Just be.

This project is very meditative and relaxing. Especially when you're knitting to inifinity... (insert echo-y voice)

Step 4: Finish Your Ends

My Lazy Method

I (officially) encourage you to use the correct method of casting off explained in the link above.

Unofficially, I have a lazy method of casting off. Since I used two yarns in my project, I threaded one strand of yarn on a darning needle, and stitched through each loop, taking it off the peg after it was securely on my needle. When all loops were on the strand (shown here), I threaded the other yarn color on the needle and stuck it straight through the end of the knitted chain so that the strands were coming out of opposite sides. Then, I simply tied them in a square knot (below).

I'm okay with the lazy way, because I'm going to hide this part anyway. But, again... officially, I recommend following the rules. :)

A Close-Up of the Square Knot Finish

A Close-Up of the Square Knot Finish
A Close-Up of the Square Knot Finish

Loom Knitting Tools

Take it from someone who spent the whole weekend french knitting with just my fingers. You want to use a tool for lifting loops. Your fingers will thank you!

Nantucket Seafood 5740 Shell Cracker and Picks Set, 5-Piece
Nantucket Seafood 5740 Shell Cracker and Picks Set, 5-Piece

You could buy a loom hook or a crochet hook to help lift your knit stitches over the pegs on your French knitter, but I like to use something I'm going to find useful for other things - like cracking nuts. Many people use nut/seafood picks for lifting stitches (and it works double duty when you have a walnut you need to dig out of the shell). Another option to consider is a simple crochet hook.

Stitched Ends of Infinity Scarf
Stitched Ends of Infinity Scarf

Infinity Method A: Simply Stitching the Ends Together

In the first method, I simply stitched the ends together. Nothing fancy or decorative. Just end to end.

What I like about this method is that my scarf loops around my neck can be varied - as long or as short, as many or as few as I like. However, I didn't like that the layers of loops around my neck felt rather bulky.

I decided to take my finishing technique to the next level, but if you like it, you can feel free to stop here.

Infinity Method B: Wrapped Yarn Cinch

With the ends stitched together (Method A), I created long loops similar to any other infinity scarf but with 4 long thin loops instead of 1 bulky one. Then, I took about 2 yards of yarn in one color and tied it tightly around the 4 loops near the spot where the ends were stitched together. I left one short end and one long end.

Holding the short end along the scarf, I began wrapping the long end around and around the gathered loops, making sure to keep the wrapping tight. Each wrap laid neatly next to the one before until I had wrapped about 3 inches of the gathered loops. I then tied the long and short ends into a knot and tucked it under the wrapping.

This method was inspired by hair wrapping, so if it helps, you can use the video below to get a clearer idea of how this yarn wrapping method works.

I liked how the yarn wrapping controls the I-cord chain a bit, while leaving me a lot of freedom to play with my scarf. It also cinches the section at the neck to decrease the bulkiness.

Leather Cinch Finishing Technique
Leather Cinch Finishing Technique

Infinity Method C: Leather Cinch

For this method, I used some scrap leather I had on hand and cut a rectangle narrow enough that when wrapped, it would cinch the bulky yarn chain loops together. It helped a lot that I had already done the yarn wrapping which held everything in place. I punched holes (mine is a vintage hole punch, but I highly recommend the leather hole punch below as I have used that style too) along two edges of the leather and stitched them together as shown in the photo tutorial below. Using the "x" pattern allowed me to stitch more easily than the running stitch I originally thought of using.

Note: Some strong fabric will work for this method too if you have a color or pattern you like.

I like that the Leather Cinch adds a touch of decoration to the scarf and breaks up the monotony of the knitted chain. I think it looks a little more finished this way.

Leather Cinch Photo Tutorial

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Start with the yarn wrapping cinch to hold things in place.Cut your leather and punch the needed holes. I used 7, but do what makes sense for your project.Make sure the leather fits right before you start stitching.Your first stitch should have both ends (1 long and 1 short) inside the leather, so that you can tie a knot to secure them.Tuck the short end inside the leather, and use the long end to stitch x's along your leather cinch. I used 4 stitches for every crosspiece, to make sure it would stay secure.Here's how it looks on the back.And here's the whole scarf. Yay!
Start with the yarn wrapping cinch to hold things in place.
Start with the yarn wrapping cinch to hold things in place.
Cut your leather and punch the needed holes. I used 7, but do what makes sense for your project.
Cut your leather and punch the needed holes. I used 7, but do what makes sense for your project.
Make sure the leather fits right before you start stitching.
Make sure the leather fits right before you start stitching.
Your first stitch should have both ends (1 long and 1 short) inside the leather, so that you can tie a knot to secure them.
Your first stitch should have both ends (1 long and 1 short) inside the leather, so that you can tie a knot to secure them.
Tuck the short end inside the leather, and use the long end to stitch x's along your leather cinch. I used 4 stitches for every crosspiece, to make sure it would stay secure.
Tuck the short end inside the leather, and use the long end to stitch x's along your leather cinch. I used 4 stitches for every crosspiece, to make sure it would stay secure.
Here's how it looks on the back.
Here's how it looks on the back.
And here's the whole scarf. Yay!
And here's the whole scarf. Yay!

Leather Cinch Supplies


I like to have leather scraps on hand for a variety of projects. You just never know when it will come in handy, and these are an affordable way to get a bunch of different colors and weights of leather.

Another spool knit infinity scarf made with vareigated wool. This one made a beautiful Christmas gift!
Another spool knit infinity scarf made with vareigated wool. This one made a beautiful Christmas gift!

Questions & Answers

    Let me know what you think of my infinity scarf project. - Or what you think of spool knitting in general.

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      • kimberlyschimmel profile image

        Kimberly Schimmel, MLS 4 years ago from Greensboro, NC

        I make my I-cord faster with a pair of double-pointed needles. I still have lots of spools and looms, though, in case my daughters want to knit in the round. They use straight and circular needles, but I haven't taught them to use DPNs yet.

      • JJNW profile image

        JJNW 5 years ago from USA

        So cool! I love your leather cinch idea. That gives it a lot more fashion oomph. lol. SquidAngel Blessed and "Liked" by a Giant Squid : )!

      • GeekGirl1 profile image

        GeekGirl1 5 years ago

        thank you for sharing this lens.

      • ItayaLightbourne profile image

        Itaya Lightbourne 5 years ago from Topeka, KS

        This is new to me! I learned how to do loom knitting but didn't know about spool knitting. Not sure how it escaped me. Very nice article with lots of tutorials and inspiration! :)

      • inkymama profile image

        inkymama 5 years ago

        Nice lens! I love to knit, but have never tried this method. I think this would be fun for a kid, too.

      • Tracie-Fisher profile image

        Tracie-Fisher 5 years ago

        Thanks, I've always wondered how spool knitting was done. Nice work.

      • Linda BookLady profile image

        Linda Jo Martin 5 years ago from Post Falls, Idaho, USA

        Verrrry creative! My daughter is starting to crochet and I'm tempted to get her one of these spool knitters. She would love it!

      • sarasentor lm profile image

        sarasentor lm 5 years ago

        Lens is so interesting and helpful.

      • profile image

        anonymous 5 years ago

        I just noticed that in this you use 5 we only used 4 nails(for stitches) more work than when we did it. Shows how I must be lazy as I see the easier way hey.

      • ryokomayuka profile image

        ryokomayuka 5 years ago from USA

        this looks interesting.

      • profile image

        anonymous 5 years ago

        Good ideas for me :)

      • profile image

        dellgirl 5 years ago

        I like your lens and thank you for the directions on spool knitting, its very interesting!

      • hovirag profile image

        hovirag 5 years ago

        I learnt it then forgot it... I love the French Knit Flowers :)

      • street2linen profile image

        street2linen 5 years ago

        How fun! I can't wait to try it!

      • profile image

        anonymous 5 years ago

        I learned when I was a kid. I used an empty thread spool and put 4 nails in one end and away I went. Place mats and rugs were my thing. My mother did the sewing. Great lens. It takes me back a long time. Thank you.

      • WhiteIsland profile image

        WhiteIsland 5 years ago

        I've never done this before, but I love the scarf, so I think I'd like to try! :)

      • AcornOakForest profile image

        Monica Lobenstein 5 years ago from Western Wisconsin

        @MichaelDubrovnik: ha ha... That's really funny! My husband thought it looked like a sausage when I was making it too! Thanks for visiting!

      • profile image

        MichaelDubrovnik 5 years ago

        For a second I thought it's a sausage lacklace! Great illusion :) Keep it up, lensmaster.

      • TheLoneWriter LM profile image

        TheLoneWriter LM 5 years ago

        Neato! Guess l just found myself a new hobby! Not that I need another one...writing, carving, playing piano and violin, baking...it's no wonder my room is a mess and I'm behind on my homework. ;)

      • profile image

        john9229 5 years ago

        Nice Lens! Shared it to my wife :) She's going to love this scarf.

      • youndyd lm profile image

        youndyd lm 5 years ago

        Very informational lens. Thanks for the tutorial.

      • Sunflower2423 profile image

        Sunflower2423 5 years ago

        Nice lens. I loved the scarf and tutorials. I will have to try doing this if I can. Very nice information on this lens. :)

      • SiochainGraSonas profile image

        SiochainGraSonas 5 years ago

        Beautiful scarf. I am more likely to purchase already made than make it myself. Thank you for sharing.

      • profile image

        CherylTiegs 5 years ago

        Do you have any video guide? If you do, I would like to have a look.

      • profile image

        hmommers 5 years ago

        I learned something new today. Thnx. :-)

      • birdsdword profile image

        birdsdword 5 years ago

        This will be good for my mother in law...just came from her house and she has yarn every where. I will facebook this to her...thanks

      • profile image

        cleanyoucar 5 years ago

        Great tutorial, might forward this to my wife! :D

      • profile image

        anonymous 5 years ago

        Great projects. Several ideas for me to work on now. Thanks

      • maryseena profile image

        maryseena 5 years ago

        Great lens and wonderful projects to work on. I will come back for more info.

      • tobydavis profile image

        tobydavis 5 years ago

        Wow! Really interesting lens - loads of info and I loved all the step by step guides and wonderful different options and styles - your passion for this project shines through :-)

      • LeslieMirror profile image

        LeslieMirror 5 years ago

        I like to make various ornaments for my house. It always looks rather original.

      • asiliveandbreathe profile image

        asiliveandbreathe 5 years ago

        I use my chains to weave in & out of crochet or knitted pieces, for decoration eg round a neckline, the brim of a hat, cushions or on a wall-hanging.

      • profile image

        SEOgeek1 5 years ago

        Nice one

      • rattie lm profile image

        rattie lm 5 years ago

        Children love to do French knitting. The scarf is a terrific idea.

      • profile image

        The-Quirky-Banana 5 years ago

        Wowww... this looks great! I have some wool somewhere- this looks like a great use of it! :) Great lens- very creative, informative, and colourful!

      • profile image

        candy47 5 years ago

        This is a wonderful lens for experienced knitters and it's an inspiration for those of us who don't knit! I love the idea of an infinity scarf...I think I can do it!! Thanks for an in depth lens! Blessed.

      • RoadMonkey profile image

        RoadMonkey 5 years ago

        I learned French knitting as a child but never knew what to do with the results.

      • profile image

        Shiponblog 5 years ago

        @EmmaCooper LM: I agree with you :) .It's a useful Post

      • CrystalNici LM profile image

        CrystalNici LM 5 years ago

        I am about to teach my young son to French Knit and this article will be very useful, thanks!

      • EmmaCooper LM profile image

        EmmaCooper LM 5 years ago

        Great lens, blessed by a SquidAngel :)

      • profile image

        LadyDuck 5 years ago

        Very useful lens, I found great ideas, thanks for sharing.

      • profile image

        escapebox 5 years ago

        This is a very cool idea. I'd be sure to try it.

      • jlshernandez profile image

        jlshernandez 5 years ago

        I used the i-cord for my felted wool purses. Infinity scarves are something new to me. Thanks for the ideas.

      • hotsquid profile image

        hotsquid 5 years ago

        I have an infinity scarve and I love it. Maybe I can make one myself after I learn the spool knitting. Thanks for sharing.

      • religions7 profile image

        religions7 5 years ago

        I did spool knitting in primary school - never thought you could make such a cute scarf out of it.

      • Mickie Gee profile image

        Mickie Goad 5 years ago

        I have become very fond on infinity scarves and have knitted several. Thanks for a new idea for me to try.

      • nicenet profile image

        nicey 5 years ago


      • scrapquilter profile image

        Myreda Johnson 5 years ago from Ohio USA

        Spool knitting is what got me interested in knitting in the beginning. I learned how to spool knit at camp.

      • BGrimes profile image

        BGrimes 5 years ago

        I'd love to learn how to knit! Your infinity scarf is gorgeous. My grandmother used to knit all the time, but she never taught me.

      • Jogalog profile image

        Jogalog 5 years ago

        I'd love to be able to do this. My gran tried to teach me loads of knitting techniques when I was a child but unfortunately I didn't pick any of them up properly.

      • blessedmomto7 profile image

        blessedmomto7 5 years ago

        I really like the infinity scarf. I've never considered knitting one w/ french knitting. I think I will make one thanks to you!

      • Aibrean82 profile image

        Aibrean82 5 years ago

        Loved the infinity scarf! Will definitely give that a go. I like traditional knitting as well, but I like to mix up the mediums now and then (read: I get bored easily...). I had a knitting nancy as a kid too, and remember Mom helping me sew one of my chains together in a spiral to put the teapot on, so that I could give it to gradma as a Christmas present. She loved it!

      • profile image

        Torrs13 5 years ago

        Very cool! I will have to learn how to spool knit... looks fun!

      • Wendy Leanne profile image

        Wendy Leanne 5 years ago from Texas

        I crochet instead of knit, but that super cut scarf in the intro is enough to make me want to give knitting a try.

      • Rymom28 profile image

        Rymom28 5 years ago

        I think this something my sister would totally love, thanks for sharing!

      • squidoopets profile image

        Darcie French 5 years ago from Abbotsford, BC

        I've always admired those who can knit such beautiful garments

      • knitstricken profile image

        knitstricken 5 years ago

        Blessed! So much I-Cord magic here! Lovely!

      • profile image

        miaponzo 5 years ago

        I have seen these before but didn't know what they were!!!! Now I do! I think doing this type of knitting looks like fun! Angel Blessings to you!!!!

      • thegreenninja profile image

        thegreenninja 5 years ago

        I love the leather cinch!

      • profile image

        anonymous 5 years ago

        great ideas on knitting...www,jankioiltools.com

      • Fridayonmymind LM profile image

        Fridayonmymind LM 5 years ago

        I love your project and all of the other great ideas here.

      • SheGetsCreative profile image

        Angela F 5 years ago from Seattle, WA

        Excellent tutorial *blessed


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