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No-Knit Scarf

Created By: **researcher: Andrea Cowsert**




  • Bulky-weight yarn 


  1. Step 1

    Here's a cozy yet speedy project. Cut 12 pieces of bulky-weight yarn to about 1 1/2 times the desired length of the final scarf. (We used 140-inch pieces to make an 86-inch scarf.)

  2. Step 2

    Divide yarn into 4 bunches of 3 strands each.

  3. Step 3

    Tie 2 bunches together with a square knot, leaving 6 inches of fringe at end; repeat with remaining bunches. Pin the knots to a piece of foam board.

  4. Step 4

    Knot inner 2 bunches of yarn together, spacing knot about 1 inch from existing knots, then knot left and right bunches together.

  5. Step 5

    Alternate knotting the inner bunches and the left and right ones, spacing knots evenly apart, until about 6 inches of yarn remain on the end.

  6. Step 6

    Finish so that final knots mirror opposite end, and trim to even the ends.

Martha Stewart Living, November 2007



Reviews (89)

  • mommadebbieann 21 Jan, 2014

    I made this scarf and gave it as a Christmas gift and made one for myself. I am happy to say my daughter loves this scarf and so do I. Plus it is so easy to make and of course you get to pick your own colors...

  • andreena 22 Sep, 2013

    Nice and easy to make gift! I doubled the width and it turned out amazing!

  • dotdillon 16 Jan, 2013

    This scarf looks like it was made with t-shirt yarn. Very easy to use.

  • suziecello 28 Nov, 2012

    I found a bunch of yarn on etsy and e-bay. Some are free-shipping. I was specifically looking for cotton yarn as I live in Phoenix. I also ordered some cotton ribbon yarn that is really light weight and will be really pretty.

  • MissRoyc 28 Nov, 2012

    I just made one. Love it! Super simple, and the further along you get the easier it gets. I used handpainted Burly Spun 100% wool in foggy night by the Brown Sheep Company. It was only $24.95 at my local yarn shop. It is beautiful. It has an ombre effect to it. Gorgeous! There are 132 yards in the skein, which will give me 2.75 scarves. I love this project so much that I'll be heading back to the yarn shop today as I now have a list of women who would love this scarf for Christmas.

  • suziecello 27 Nov, 2012

    I spent three hours trying to make square knots all the way down, but that really isn't what you're supposed to do. What you do is make only the FIRST step in the square knot (like tying a shoelace) then you are able to do the alternate knots (the two in the middle, the two on the left, and the two on the right.) I practiced using inexpensive yarn initially to see if it would work and how it looked. It looks great, so I will try to find the thick bulky yarn which I haven't found yet.

  • mft40 27 Nov, 2012

    I love the idea...the directions are horribly vague...why not say a skein with 50 yes on it....most unusual for ms directions

  • NickiL 14 May, 2012

    for heaven't sake...hire someone to make these and take photos...worst tutorials EVER on the Martha Website.

  • Tari4Art 10 Nov, 2011

  • SarahObregon 8 Sep, 2010

    Made this for a friend for her birthday. So cute and very easy. In fact, I made one for myself :)

  • tpro1 9 Dec, 2009

    This is a cute project! I couldn't find bulky yarn so I just used about 8 or 9 strands of yarn per bunch. I even used a couple of strands flossy yarn in each bunch to give it something a little extra. So easy! Tied each bunch in knots just like the picture above. One's much easier if you keep it somewhat taught at the beginning end - then you can space out the knots better. Thanks for the idea. Fast

  • Cantusemyownname 25 Mar, 2009

    Does anyone have instructions for making this scarf? I can't do the knots. I've gone to other websites and found instructions for square knots but I can't seem to apply it to this. Can someone please help? I think knitting might be easier :)

  • trama 28 Feb, 2009

    Love this craft!!

  • nanwie 13 Feb, 2009

    Very easy scarf to make and the compliments just don't ever end. Follow the simple instructions and you shouldn't have any problems. I cut my 12 pieces of yarn 145 inches each and ended up with a beautiful 84 inch scarf. What a fun gift !

  • DJRandles 10 Feb, 2009

    Got together with two friends and made these scarves. We ended up with one really short group of three strands and had to cut the other three to match. All of us ended up with the same length scarf that was more like 48" long, not 84". It became apparent that the inner two groups are knotted twice as often as the outer two and therefore are much shorter. There should be some instruction regarding this, or compensation in the length.

  • sharonee 19 Jan, 2009

    where can you purchase the yarn that is shown in the photo above?

  • Mistelle 17 Jan, 2009

    LOVE IT!!!! Took me less than an hour. I used a Homespun yarn

  • thymeforfun 15 Jan, 2009

    Great idea! It kind of reminds me of a ribbon-scarf I saw being made on a craft show. The person took several spools of ribbon and with simple knots made a thin but really beautiful and classy looking scarf. I like the idea of fleece too for warmer and more practical uses.

  • MsLisaC 13 Jan, 2009

    This is so easy!! I knit with needles but wanted to make a quick scarf as a present... this literally only took me 45 minutes and it looks so nice! I'm going to try the same idea but with thinner yarn and 5 bunches. I hope you all enjoyed this as much as I did!

  • petalpainter 8 Jan, 2009

    I need to update that comment...the correct addres is

  • petalpainter 8 Jan, 2009

    try for some home spun wools and hand dyed yarns. This seller has the ability to dye anything you want in any color you request. I am going to try some of her thick yarns for this. Should work nicely!

  • massuez 7 Jan, 2009

    these look like macrame knots - pretty simple once you get the rhythm of it. You can find macrame sites online

  • petalpainter 7 Jan, 2009

    I am wondering if a person could use this pattern with t-shirt fabric too? Any ideas? Please do share? I have not idea how to tie this knot? Is there a website to show you how? Thanks all and Happy New Year! Lana

  • MsTee 5 Jan, 2009

    CarmelaRose you can add beads to this but you would need them large enough so that their holes would accomodate all the strands of yarn separated into each bunch. The beads go on the strands of yarn between the knots -- feed the strands through the bead just after tieing a knot and just before tieing the next. If you can visualize the finished scarf draw a sketch then you can plan your bead placements and add them as you create your knotsby checking your drawing

  • MsTee 5 Jan, 2009

    Ran out of characters but wanted to add a note about this pattern for fringe around baby afghans. After tieing on fringe (counting strands to make sure of equal numbers for knots) work with one side at a time. Pin it to the edge of your bed or padded work table and knot row by row, corner knots mirrored (4 or 5 rows) leaving a nice length of fringe hanging free, . IMPORTANT -- tie knots close enough to keep little hands, feet, and heads from getting caught in openings. Now - daughter's scarf!!

  • MsTee 5 Jan, 2009

    Absolutely correct pboszko. I have made numerous jute rope macrame planted pot hangers and this is the most simple knot used. This pattern is very popular and macrame was a #1 craft in the 60's and 70's. Everyone made macrame belts, headbands and etc. -- a friend even made shawls and short and calf length vests. I have used this knotted pattern on the fringe around knitted baby blankets I've made. Turns out really pretty. Delicate and lacey looking.

  • pboszko 4 Jan, 2009

    hello's called macrme...popular late 60's early 70's!

  • CarmelaRose 4 Jan, 2009

    I wonder if you could incorporate large beads in a few of the knots?

  • andeande 4 Jan, 2009

    that looks fun! think i'll give it a try!

  • LaTeDaDavis 4 Jan, 2009

    Great scarf but really Martha... No directions? Why post this with no REAL Instructions?

  • ceililly 4 Jan, 2009

    If you would like to increase the size of the scarf you can copy and paste to an email to your self. Before send click on picture and when small boxes appear drag them to increase sice you want. If you get it to large it will not be clear.
    Agreed original is not very clear to begin with.
    Good luck and Happy New Year.
    Chattanooga, TN

  • marianct 3 Jan, 2009

    I am thinking of trying to make scarf 1st.If all goes well then I am going to try to make a throw using this method.I am going to add some fleece into the mix for added warmth and texture.Any suggestions for the throw?

  • Maui4Me 3 Jan, 2009

    This yarn can be found at a local yarn shop. Do a search on!

  • RBYB 3 Jan, 2009

    For housemama: You can figure yarn by the following: 140"(length of strands) x 12 (number of strands) =1680" divided by 36 (number of inches in a yard) = 46.7 yds. So any skein of yarn that has 50 or more yards will do just fine.

  • shaz5980 2 Jan, 2009

    I had heaps of builky yarn that I had no use for this is fantastic

  • 321suzanne 2 Jan, 2009

    very clever. Great idea for young children to do as an after school activity.

  • housemama 2 Jan, 2009

    How many balls of the Twilleys Yarn do I need to buy?

  • mlnags 2 Jan, 2009

    Lould this be done with blanket materials/bunting cut in strips?

  • candicekelly 2 Jan, 2009

    Sunny, the link i left seems to be out of stock, so i have found you another site with loads of colour options!


  • candicekelly 2 Jan, 2009

    Sunnyhope, I have had the same problem with finding the yarn. But i have just found a brand called Twilley's Freedon Yarn, thick like here on martha's how-to page. its everywhere here in the UK apparently! but i've found a site for the US that sells it. here ya go, good luck!

  • Tkitty 2 Jan, 2009

    It appears to be a type of simple (square knot?) macrame. If so, it would be handy to use the large "T" pins, and some sort of board, possibly foam-core or cork, to assist in holding it down and creating an even work.

  • sunnyhope 2 Jan, 2009

    I think i understand it but i woulodnt mind more photos of the technique.
    anyone know where i can get thick enough yarn (must be able 2 pay with paypal) i never seem to find that kind of yarn.
    barbesj, do you sell yarn?=

  • majoan 2 Jan, 2009

    I sent this to my friends who live in different states, we are going to do it together on line it should me so much fun. to see whose comes out frist thanks Martha.

  • barbesj 2 Jan, 2009

    I spin huge novelty yarns with flowers, beads, charms etc...this project is PERFECT for that type of yarn. I'm going to make this today!

  • Archangels 2 Jan, 2009

    Great idea! I haven't tried it yet, but I am going to. Thanks, Martha.

  • Munchkin22 2 Jan, 2009

    I love this project! I would love to use a soft bulky chenille yarn though. Does anyone have any suggestions? I agree with a previous member that the yarn used for this project is "Twinkle Soft and Chunky", which you can fine at If not, I think that using 6 strands instead of 3 would work just fine. As far as color and texture goes, the possibilities are endless. Great idea Martha!

  • PDConroy 2 Jan, 2009

    Two years ago I bought a yard each of four different colors of velvet to make scarves that had to be sewn. I never got around to it. This looks great to try with the velvet!

  • pelican66 2 Jan, 2009

    clever clever clever!

  • cookiedreams 2 Jan, 2009

    Guess what! You've just learned Macramn n n n ! I have made many plant hangers using just this technique.

  • luvkadcl 2 Jan, 2009

    How about instead of yarn, you use strips of fleece! I am going to try this with my children. We make fleece scarves for families in need during the winter. This would be a really nice change. Someone receiving this would be really happy.

  • uchidamom 2 Jan, 2009

    Two skeins of Lion Fettucini in Twilight colorway, fifteen minutes and wow...I have a new scarf! I picked up this yarn on sale last year and had no idea what I was going to make with it. Now, I'm a knitter who is a knotter!

  • martyinsa 8 Dec, 2008

    OMG. These are totally cute, and easy, and fast!!

    I made two and tied them together and it is PERFECT!! I will be making these for xmas gifts!

  • robinson0808 30 Nov, 2008

    Why can you not give a listing on where to buy this yarn at? I have looked everywhere. Why give a description on how to make something if no one can make it the way it is described.

  • dsupa4552 5 Nov, 2008

    can you explain how you figured out that you need it 2x as long in the middle and 3x as long on the outside? i thought the problem was that is was too short in the middle. how long were the pieces you used? i'm making these scarves with a group and i am trying to figure out if i have enough yarn or if i need to go out and get more. any tips are greatly appreciated!

  • susierhino 5 Nov, 2008

    To avoid the short in the middle thing make the inner bunches twice as long as desired length and the outer bunches 3x. Its a pain at the beginning tying with all that length but it works! Also I couldn't find as bulky a yarn as the picture so I just used double strands for each single. It looks great! :)

  • NaturalHealthChick 18 Oct, 2008

    This yarn looks similar, but there are only a few colors.

  • NaturalHealthChick 18 Oct, 2008

    The Blue Skyes Alpacas co. looks to be the SAME yarn used in the photo, this is a link to a retailer in NY,, they have a directory for retailers in each state, some have websites.

    Another good try is the website, might be helpful:

    Doesn't look as chunky though.

    I'll keep searching, and thanks to those that suggested Purl and YarnMarket!!!

  • NaturalHealthChick 18 Oct, 2008

    I FOUND THE YARN...atleast I am pretty sure I did. (No Thanks to ms. stewarts staff who have not replied to my enquiries about this yarn and where we, her fans and customers of her magazine, can purchase the yarn). Nevertheless,,9 The prices range between $11.50-$15.50 not our Lion Brand $3.50-$6.99 on the high side, lol!

    More below on my next post....

  • oanya 15 Oct, 2008

    I'm also having problems tracking down this type of yarn. I've searched on eBay, Etsy, Michael's, Joann's, etc with no success.

    I went to a yarn store today and talked to the owner. I showed her the picture, and she looked at me like I was crazy! She said this type of yarn doesn't exist and recommended to take a bunch of skinny yarn instead of these thick pieces. Of course, that isn't going to look as nice as this.

    The Great Yarn Quest continues...

  • gildthatlily 20 Aug, 2008

    Can anyone help me find a yarn in cotton that would work for this?

  • MashaKestel 4 Apr, 2008

    I love this website. This is one of the projects for this weekend with my girls.

  • meso 2 Feb, 2008

    and ivanna burger--yes you're tying the correct square knot. the inner bunches are knotted more and will be shorter than the outer bunches.

    when cut my yarn i nearly doubled the finished length i wanted (including fringe in that measurement). the 1 1/2 times the desired finished length the directions recommend kind of skimp a little.

    and for anyone needing to know how to tie a square knot:

  • meso 2 Feb, 2008

    great pattern. like some of the others i used a slightly less bulky yarn but used 6 bunchs of 4. I hope anyone starting the project will read through the comments beforehand. the heads up about length was really helpful.

    i'm thinking of using the same yarn and making a light weight throw with the knots spaced more closely together...if i can find a large enough workspace in my tiny apartment. that is.

    I didn't use it for this project but anyone looking for a less expensive option for a bulky yarn--lion's wool ease also comes in a "thick and quick super chunky weight" it would actually look pretty sweet in the this scarf. (not every project warrants a trip to purl, as much as i love them)

  • GwenninSpring 23 Jan, 2008

    I love this pattern. Sooooo easy. I did have some rather scary flashbacks to making macrame plant hangers in the sixties as I stood there with strands and bundles of yarn flying through my fingers but it was well worth it. I made one with chenille using six strands and one with a bulky mohair and wool yarn that is tres chic!! This is great for teens, too.

  • DixieJen14 17 Jan, 2008

    Looks like Twinkle yarn. It's expensive but wonderful! I found it at The Woolie Ewe in Plano, TX. If you google "Twinkle yarn" you can find it online.

  • Haremscarem 22 Dec, 2007

    You guys coming up short are making your knots too close together. My scarves came out long and gorgeous... I even made a design for men using 6 bunches, knotting closer together and cutting the fringe to 1 1/2". I made 14 of them for Christmas presents. It's a wonderful design, thanks!

  • 1craftygirl 20 Dec, 2007

    Oops I said 96 and they listed 86in. Still very different than my results of 144in to less than 54in finished. Just be sure to use a lot of length to get this to work right.

  • 1craftygirl 20 Dec, 2007

    I made this too and came up very short in the middle. I believe it's because the outer strands stay outer strands and don't get used as much. Also, I started with 4 yds and ended up with a scarf only about 1 1/2 yds. So the ratio listed of 140 in-96in finished is not accurate. Very fun and easy though!!

  • AllieBruski 19 Dec, 2007

    I made this using 6 groups of 4 pieces of yarn for a wider scarf. 6 pieces also- makes for a thicker scarf.

  • snappi1126 16 Dec, 2007

    I just made this scarf but had the same problem with the yarn in the middle coming up too short. I had to make it much shorter than I wanted because of that. Any suggestions on how to fix it? I 'm pretty sure I'm tying the knots properly.

  • fairysari 12 Dec, 2007

    Other yarns that would work that haven;t been mentioned are Lamb's Pride Burly Spun, Cascade Magnum, Crystal Palaca Iceland, Gedifra Gigante... If you go to your local yarn store and ask for super bulky weight yarn, they should have something like this.

  • BoxerLover 11 Dec, 2007

    I haven't been able to find it either! I have looked in every major sewing store in Dallas. No luck! I will have to try (#1s) Idea, and just use regular yarn.

  • krismort 5 Dec, 2007

    I just made this fantastic scarf yesterday with regular yarn. I couldn't find the thick yarn pictured so I took 6 strands of regular yarn in 3 bunches. I braided them to make 1 of the 4 main cords needed. It was a bit of extra work, but well worth it. Just make sure that your yarn is much longer than you actually want the scarf to be when it's all done - to account for the braiding and then Martha's knotting.

  • thegoodneighbor 3 Dec, 2007

    Can someone please tell me what kind of yarn this is the picture. I can't find anything that looks like this. Can anyone share what they used (name/brand/where they got it) please

  • ivanna_burger 2 Dec, 2007

    Has anyone ended up with less yarn in the middle, at least a foot, when complete? I think I'm tying the right square knots.
    Left over right, then through. then
    Right over left and through.

  • lpham12 30 Nov, 2007

    i made this last night during CSI and ER. i was able to keep up with the plot lines and still complete a gorgeous piece. i got my yarn from Michaels.

  • alltheseasons 23 Nov, 2007

    I can't wait to try this. It's so great!

  • feminiSh 18 Nov, 2007

    When I saw this project I got really excited and immediately did a search for bulk yarn. I found this great site and I can't wait to order some!

  • TicaTiquita 18 Nov, 2007

    Does anyones know which yarn was used for the scarf in the example? I've been told to try Rowan's biggy print... I would love to use the same kind used here. Thanks!

  • rusticpumpkin 18 Nov, 2007

    I'm going to try this project in a few weeks when I have some spare time. I recently had to cut the selveges off 30 mts of fleece and knew it would be handy for something. I think it will work really well instead of yarn. I also have some synthetic jersey that isn't good for anything much at the moment, so I might make one from that as well.

  • AzSun 17 Nov, 2007

    I love this project and have been doing some research. However, I cannot find yarn of this thickness anywhere. I looked in the magazine's shopping guide and did not find anything. As you can see in the image with the woman, each piece is nice and thick. If anyone could help me locate this specific yarn, that would be great!

  • jcsallen3 16 Nov, 2007

    I love this project. I've added some additional looks by integrating my knowledge of macrame and using fleece.

  • Sassafrass 14 Nov, 2007

    I'm with JDK - use your imagination. This would be a great teacher gift from the kids, that they can make themselves, too. Another possibility for this might be to use strips of cloth, for example, try using strips (I'm thinking about 1" wide - maybe even cut with a pinking rotary cutter) of polar fleece and make a matching hat and mittens with the same fabric.

  • shewhomust 13 Nov, 2007

    "Bulky" refers to the yarn's diameter not the brand name. Go to a yarn or craf ts store and ask to see the bulky yarns. (They should be labeled on the skein. They also come in a wide range of prices and here are two to try: Rowan's Biggy (spendy and wonderful) and Lion's Woolease bulky (washable and affordable). Good luck!

  • JDK 12 Nov, 2007

    Pagemaven, try bundling any yarns together; any colors, textures, weights--mix 'em up. Don't worry, be creative.
    Also, try strips of fabric--frayed edges perhaps? Go to it!

  • KRubia76 10 Nov, 2007

    There is a shop in NYC called Purl that sells this kind of yarn. I also found some great resources online. Just Google, yarn and you can find all sorts of websites that sell it.
    I plan on making this scarf for all my girlfriends this Christmas.

  • PetitPierrot 7 Nov, 2007

    I searched Google for heavyweight warn and found what looks like a good site called Looks like they sell a few possibilities. This looks like a great project! Can't wait to try it.

  • Pagemaven 6 Nov, 2007

    I too would love to find this yarn, but after looking numerous places I am still unable to locate it. I have tried the heaviest gauge yarn, but it just does not turn out right. Please if anyone knows where to find this material please let me know.

  • jaynekeller 4 Nov, 2007

    I'm unable to find this yarn. I would love to make this scarf for friends for the holidays. I've searched two yarn stores without success. Anyone know the name brand of this yarn? I can search online if I knew the name.