How to Make a Recycled Necktie Scarfcomments (8) August 25th, 2008
My pattern also takes advantage of the variable width of a necktie—my stripes will be narrower on one side than the other. But I need to keep the scarf straight overall. So, join your pieces like this: Place them side by side, right sides facing up. Make sure that the angled edges of the two pieces match, as shown here.
Then, pin the pieces right sides together, as shown, and sew with a 1/4-inch seam allowance. Because the fabric is bias cut, it will want to stretch as it passes through the feed dogs of your sewing machine. Be careful not to put too much pressure on the fabric with your fingers as it passes through—you want it to maintain its width as you sew. Light finger-pressure is best.
Continue cutting 6-inch-wide pieces of your various neckties and adding them to the scarf in this manner. The finished scarf will have casual-looking stripes: some wider, some narrower. If you match angles with every piece, then your scarf will have straight edges, as shown.
If you don't match angles, then your scarf could end up curved, like this. If this happens, you'll want to take out some seams and make adjustments.
When you've pieced your scarf as long as you want it, then it's time to add a backing. Here's where that bias thing raises its head again. Notice here: All my original scarf pieces are 6 inches wide. And this piece of backing fabric is also 6 inches wide. And they don't appear to be the same width! What happened?
It's okay—the necktie silk, as mentioned before, has a tendency to stretch. The weight of all these sewn-together pieces will pull the whole scarf so it ends up being a little narrower than when you began. We can cheat around this a bit. First, just cut your backing strip a little narrower, 5 inches instead of 6 inches.
Second, pin the scarf to the backing in a specific order: Pin the two short ends together first, right sides together. Then, fold the two pieces in half together to find the center of each. Match these centers and pin. From there, pin the rest of the edges together, stretching the scarf slightly to match the width of the backing.
Sew the two pieces together along the two long edges, using a 1/4-inch seam allowance. Leave the two short ends open—this makes it so much easier to turn the whole thing right side out.
Turn the scarf right side out by putting your arm through the whole thing, grabbing the opposite end, and pulling it back through. Press it flat. Turn under the raw edges on the two ends and pin. Stitch them together with a tiny slipstitch.
And have fun wearing your new creation!
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