Do you have a piece of wrap that you wish you could have a scarf except it’s only 10+” (25 cm) wide? No problem! Make a cowl instead!

First measure your head! This is important because you want to make sure this is going to fit over your head once you are done! The width of your wrap should be 3″ (7.5cm) bigger than your head otherwise you are going to have a hard time wearing the cowl. The average adult head is 22″ (55cm) and some wraps are only 24″ (60cm) wide. That will mean you will have a finished size of 23″ (57.5cm) and it may not make it over your head.  Or it may squish your nose horribly.

If your wrap has hemmed rails, you will need to unpick the hems. You could cut them off, but for most machine woven wraps undoing a hem is quick if you are using the seam ripper properly. The plastic bulb goes into the seam and runs along the rail to quickly cut the threads. Careful using this technique on handwovens or loose weave machine wovens as it is easy to catch the threads of the wrap.


The side with the plastic bulb goes in the seam and run it along the rail to cut the threads.

Start with a rectangle at least 10″ x 25″ (25cm x 63cm). It isn’t shown until later in this tutorial, but zigzag stitching or serging the raw edges will keep the edges from fraying and keep stray threads to a minimum.

You could just sew the rail ends together and call it a day. I like to hide the seam by making a flat felled seam. It sounds fancy, it looks fancy  and yet is easy to sew.

To start, line up the 2 rails with Rail B (the blue one) sticking out 1/2″ (1.5cm) further than the Rail A (the yellow one). Pin in place.


Sew a 1″ (2.5cm) seam from Rail B or 1/2″ (1.5 cm) on Rail A.


Using an iron, press the seam towards Rail B.


This is the trickiest part (or at least the trickiest part to show in pictures). Press Rail B over 1/2′ (1.5cm) back towards the seam. Rail B will cover up the seam allowance from Rail A.


Take Rail B and flop the whole seam over to the other side and pin in place. This is still on the inside of the cowl.


Sew  close to the folded edge of Rail B 1/8″ – 1/4″  (0.5 cm) away from the edge.You will be sewing on the same side as Rail A. This will leave a seam and top stitching showing on the outside of the cowl. The seam will look finished on the inside. And the flat felled seam is complete!


To finish the edges of the cowl, fold over the edge 3/8″ (1cm) and press in place.

Note, at this point I had zigzaged the raw edge of the wrap as it was fraying and I was having troubles tucking the stray threads into the fold. This step is best done before starting sewing.


Fold the edge over 3/8″ (1cm) a second time to hide the raw edge. Pin and iron in place.


Top stitch the folded edge in place by sewing 1/4″ (0.5cm) along the edge.


Repeat on the other side of the cowl. Voila! A finished cowl!


You can wear it as a scarf or a hood to keep your ears warm.


Option 2:  Use a wider piece of wrap to make a thicker cowl, such as 20″ (45cm).

Option 3: If starting with a piece 20″ (45cm), cut in half to make least 10″ (25cm) wide and repeat the flat felled steps to make a double length cowl.

Tag me on Instagram or Facebook as I’d love to see your creations!

Download a pdf of this tutorial