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Garter Stitch Scarf Pattern – Simple For Beginners


This garter stitch scarf pattern, which is simple for beginners, is an excellent project for anyone who is learning how to knit.

The scarf is knit in garter stitch, knitting every row until it is super long and cozy!

Scroll down to view the free pattern and grab your free printable PDF.

garter stitch scarf

Pattern Gauge and Scarf Size


Finished measurements – laying flat and unstretched:

  • Length = 98.5 inches/250 cm
  • Width = 7 inches/18 cm

Gauge – 10 stitches, 18 rows in 4×4 inches/10×10 cm in garter stitch.

Easy knit scarf pattern
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Garter Stitch Scarf Pattern

The scarf knits up quickly, and the simple design makes for a relaxing and enjoyable knit.

If this is your first scarf, it will be easier for you to use straight needles and a super bulky yarn – mainly so you can see your stitches and any mistakes as you knit.

The entire scarf is knit in garter stitch (knitting every row) and the number of stitches you will cast on will determine the width.

You will need enough yarn to make this scarf long enough to wrap around your neck – as you can see in the photos.

Skill Level – Basic (Beginner)

Copyright Information

  • Please do not copy, sell, redistribute, or republish this simple garter stitch scarf pattern. 
  • If you wish to share this pattern, link to the pattern page only.
  • You may sell items produced using this pattern.
  • Do NOT use copyrighted photos of the finished scarf for your product listing.
  • For the copyright T&C, please read my Terms of Use.

The supplies you need

Tip – Check the yarn label or ball band for yarn weight information and needle size.





  • CO – Cast on (long tail cast-on)
  • K – Knit (knit stitch)
  • Rep – Repeat
  • St(s) – Stitch(es)

Scarf Pattern

With (US 13) 9 mm needles, cast on 25 sts.

Row 1: Knit to the end of the row.

Rep row 1 until your scarf is the desired length.

End with the right side facing you for the next row.

Cast off.

Grab your free knitting pattern below and enjoy!

easy knit scarf

Is Garter Stitch Good For Scarves?

Yes, garter stitch can be an excellent choice for scarves for several reasons:

  1. Texture: Garter stitch creates a textured fabric with ridges on both sides. The texture adds visual interest to the scarf and makes it reversible, meaning it looks the same on both sides.
  2. Warmth: The texture of garter stitch traps air within the fabric, providing warmth and insulation, which is desirable in scarves, especially during cold weather.
  3. Ease of Knitting: Garter stitch is one of the simplest and most basic knitting stitches, making it ideal for beginners or for those who prefer relaxing, repetitive knitting. It involves knitting every row, so you don’t need to worry about switching between knit and purl stitches.
  4. Minimal Curling: Unlike stockinette stitch, which tends to curl at the edges, garter stitch lies flat, requiring little to no blocking to keep the edges straight. This characteristic makes it suitable for scarves, as the edges will stay neat without much extra effort.
  5. Versatility: Garter stitch scarves can be knit in a variety of yarn weights, from lightweight yarns suitable for transitional seasons to bulky yarns for extra warmth in winter. They can also be knit in various lengths and widths to suit personal preferences.

Overall, garter stitch scarves are versatile, practical, and great for showcasing beautiful yarns or variegated colorways.

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced knitter, a garter stitch scarf can be a satisfying and rewarding project to knit.

garter stitch knitted scarf

Is Garter Stitch The Same As Knit Stitch?

Garter stitch and the knit stitch are related but not quite the same.

The garter stitch is a fabric pattern created by knitting every row.

This results in a fabric with ridges on both sides.

In garter stitch, every row is knit, so you’re always working the knit stitch.

The knit stitch, on the other hand, is the fundamental stitch in knitting. It’s the basic stitch that creates the V-shaped pattern you see in knitted fabric.

The knit stitch is formed by inserting the needle into the stitch on the left needle, wrapping the yarn around the needle, and pulling the new loop through to create a new stitch.

When you knit every row, you create garter stitch.

In summary, while the knit stitch is the stitch used to create garter stitch, garter stitch refers specifically to the fabric pattern created by knitting every row, resulting in a textured fabric with ridges on both sides.

huge knitted black wrap around scarf

What Is The Best Yarn To Use To Knit A Scarf?

The best yarn for knitting a scarf depends on your personal preferences, the intended use of the scarf, and the desired characteristics of the finished piece.

Here are some factors to consider when choosing yarn for a scarf:

  1. Fiber Content:
    • Wool: Wool is a popular choice for scarves because it’s warm, durable, and has good elasticity. It also holds its shape well and is available in a wide range of textures.
    • Acrylic: Acrylic yarn is affordable, easy to care for, and available in many colors and textures. It’s a good choice for people with wool allergies or those looking for low-maintenance scarves.
    • Alpaca, cashmere, silk, cotton, and blends: These fibers offer different characteristics such as softness, drape, warmth, and breathability. Choose a fiber based on the qualities you desire in your scarf.
  2. Weight:
    • Worsted weight yarn is a versatile choice for scarves. It’s not too bulky or too fine, making it easy to knit and providing good warmth without being too heavy.
    • Bulky or chunky weight yarns knit up quickly and create a thick, cozy scarf. They’re great for cold climates and quick projects.
    • DK (double knitting) weight yarns are lighter than worsted but still provide good warmth. They’re suitable for scarves that you plan to wear in transitional seasons.
  3. Texture:
    • Smooth yarns showcase stitch patterns and cables beautifully.
    • Bouclé, tweed, or variegated yarns add visual interest and texture to simple scarf patterns.
  4. Color:
    • Solid or tonal yarns highlight stitch patterns and textures.
    • Variegated or self-striping yarns add color interest without complicated stitch patterns.
  5. Yardage:
    • Make sure to choose a yarn with sufficient yardage for your scarf project. Scarves typically require anywhere from 200 to 600 yards, depending on the length, width, and stitch pattern.

Ultimately, the best yarn for your scarf project depends on your personal preferences, budget, and the intended use of the scarf.

Consider these factors when selecting yarn to ensure that your finished scarf meets your expectations in terms of look, feel, and functionality.

long knitted black garter stitch scarf

Helpful Tips For A New Knitter

Here are some helpful tips for beginner knitters making a scarf:

  1. Start with a Simple Pattern: Choose a basic stitch pattern like garter stitch (knitting every row) or stockinette stitch (knit one row, purl one row) for your first scarf. Garter stitch is especially great for beginners because it doesn’t curl at the edges like stockinette stitch does.
  2. Use Smooth Yarn: Opt for a smooth, bulky weight yarn/chunky yarn or super bulky weight yarn in a light color. This will make it easier to see your stitches as you work and make any mistakes easier to spot and correct.
  3. Choose Large Needles: Start with larger needles (US size 8 or 9) to make your knitting looser and more forgiving. This will help you avoid tight tension, which can make it difficult to insert your needle into stitches.
  4. Practice Casting On and Binding Off: Learn how to cast on stitches and bind off your work properly. These are essential skills that every knitter needs to know. There are many tutorials available online that can guide you through these processes.
  5. Take Breaks and Be Patient: Knitting can be repetitive and may strain your hands if you’re not used to it. Take breaks to rest your hands and relax your muscles. Also, be patient with yourself as you learn. It’s normal to make mistakes, especially as a beginner.
  6. Count Your Stitches: Count your stitches regularly to make sure you haven’t accidentally added or dropped any. This will help you maintain a consistent width throughout your scarf.
  7. Keep Your Tension Consistent: Try to maintain an even tension as you knit. Consistent tension will result in a neater, more uniform fabric.
  8. Use Stitch Markers: Place stitch markers at the beginning and end of your rows to help you keep track of where you are in your pattern, especially if you’re easily distracted.
  9. Measure Your Progress: Use a tape measure or ruler to measure your scarf’s width and length as you go to ensure it’s turning out as planned.
  10. Don’t be Afraid to Ask for Help: If you’re struggling with a particular technique or have questions, don’t hesitate to seek help from experienced knitters, online tutorials, or knitting resources. Knitting communities are generally very supportive and eager to help newcomers.

Remember, practice makes perfect!

Enjoy the process of learning and creating your first scarf.

Happy knitting!

Share Your Work With Us…

I wanted to share with you a really basic garter stitch scarf that will be perfect to wear during the colder months and super easy to make for absolute beginners.

I love seeing your finished projects on social media.

If you enjoyed making the scarf, I’d love to see yours on Instagram, be sure to tag me @handylittleme.

If you are on Facebook, stop over to the handylittleme Facebook group and share a photo.

I’d love to see your work.

Happy Knitting!

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  1. Hello! I am just beginner knitter and I have a few questions on this pattern: is this simply a garter stitch through out? If so, how do you know when the right side is facing you if both sides are the same when using the garter stitch?

    1. Hello Kaitlyn, you can tell which side is the right side, when the knitting is on the left-hand needle and you are about to knit another row, the tail from the cast on edge should be nearest to the tip (pointy end) of the needle. If the tail from the cast-on edge is near the end of the needle, then you are looking at the wrong side. I hope that helps and happy knitting!