Upcycled Cashmere Sweater Scarves

Cashmere scarf made from upcycled sweaters

Loryn: We Crafty Sisters bounce a lot of ideas off of each other, and this cashmere scarf design was the result of a great collaboration. My stepdad (Lynne’s husband) asked for a cashmere scarf for Christmas. Lynne found one for $55 on Amazon, but she was sure there was a thriftier, crafty way to make one.

She and I started brainstorming. I did have a stockpile of thrifted cashmere sweaters to take apart for yarn (see my yarn post here), but she didn’t want to knit a scarf. What about sewing a scarf from the sweaters? The sweaters aren’t big enough to make a complete scarf without seams, making stripes ideal. A tube design hides all the seams and makes a double thickness that feels wonderful. Lynne took several sweaters to experiment with, and came back with this:

Gray cashmere scarf made from an upcycled sweater

She made it in one solid color for an understated look. The fabric came from a vintage Scottish cashmere vest, so it is the most unbelievably soft scarf you’ve ever felt. She also made the fantastic cross-stitch label:

Cross stitch label for scarf

I loved the scarf so much that I immediately began planning to make a few of my own. Here are the steps:

Lay out your sweater so you can plan your scarf. I used four rectangles from each sweater, two from the front and two from the back. The width will depend on the size of your sweater. For this Medium size, I made each rectangle 9 1/2″ wide and 13″ long (up to the armscye).

The scarf will be less likely to stretch out of shape if you keep the rectangles aligned with the vertical length of the sweater (the direction of the arrow). If you cut the rectangles in the other direction, they will stretch more. This rule can be broken like any other, though, so experiment away!

In addition to the four rectangles from the blue sweater, I also cut three 9 1/2″ by 4″ rectangles from a gray cashmere sweater. Again, keep the stretch of the knit crossways to your pieces.

In this step, I’ve sewn the stripes together on the 9 1/2″ edge, alternating colors. Press the seams open when you’re done. Then, fold it in half and sew across one short end, down the long side, and turn the corner of the other end, leaving a small opening to turn the scarf. Turn it, and slip stitch the opening shut (see a slip stitch tutorial here). I gave it another pressing, and it’s done!

These scarves are very quick and easy, and we’ll be whipping up a lot of them for gifts and for ourselves!!

–Loryn

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17 thoughts on “Upcycled Cashmere Sweater Scarves

  1. Hello! I have a sweater where the sleeves are already 2 toned. Is it possible to cut them off then sew them back together? Will it work the same?

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