My favorite knitting pattern for a scarf has always been my bow tie knitted scarf with the keyhole opening. This ascot style of scarf is much less bulky than traditional scarves, you don’t have to worry about knotting the scarf to keep it on, and they do a great job of keeping your neck warm. In my opinion, they are the perfect little scarves!
However since I first shared this scarf knitting pattern a few years ago, (click here to read the original scarf post), I’ve gotten several requests for this same type of bow tie scarf in smaller sizes for children. All the things that make this a great scarf for adults (not bulky, lays flat and stays tied without knotting it, and warmth), are the same things that would make this a handy little knitted scarf for kids too.
So I finally got to work and came up with two new size adjustments for this bow tie keyhole knitted scarf so that we can make them in smaller versions for kids as well. The smallest size will fit children approximately ages 3 to 7, the medium size will fit children approximately ages 8 to 12, and the largest size (my original pattern) will fit teens and adults. You can now knit these scarves for the whole family!
This pattern is an oldie but a goodie that’s been around in some form or another for many years. It’s knitted in one long piece, with each end having a leaf-shaped pointed end that fits through the opening (or the keyhole) above it when it’s wrapped around your neck. I knit my scarves with a keyhole opening at each end so that no matter which end you grab you can push it through when you put it on.
The strategy for knitting the keyhole openings is to divide the stitches on the needle, knitting one stitch, and then slipping the next stitch onto a needle to hold them for later, as you work across the row. Each side then gets knit in ribbing, and the two sides are joined together again to complete the keyhole.
And even little kids seems to be able to push the leaf-shaped end of the scarf through the keyhole and put the scarf on themselves.
So whether you’re young or old, this quick little homemade scarf will give you just the right amount of warmth around your neck while still being small enough that you almost forget you’re wearing it. Put one on, go outside and enjoy!
See more of my knitting patterns here – – > Make Your Own Zone Free Knitting Patterns
Bow Tie Keyhole Knitted Scarf (with sizes for kids too)
- US Size 6 straight knitting needles
- Stitch Holder or Double Pointed (DP) Needle
- Medium weight (4) yarn (about 1 oz for small, 2 oz for medium, and 3 oz for large)
- First Leaf Shaped Point:Cast on 2 stitches.1st Row: Inc in first stitch, K next stitch2nd Row: Inc in first stitch, K to end of row.Repeat this row until there are 14 (18, 22) stitches.Work even in garter stitch (knit every row) for 18 (20, 24) rows or until total length of point is 3.5" (4.25", 5").
- Loop Opening:1st Row: *K1, slip next stitch to a DP needle or holder, repeat from * across. There will be 7 (9, 11) stitches on needle and 7 (9, 11) stitches being held to be worked later.2nd Row: P1, *K1, P1 Repeat from * across3rd Row: K1, *P1, K1 Repeat from * acrossRepeat these last two rows alternately until 13 (15, 17) rows have been completed. Place these stitches on another DP needle or holder and break yarn.Attach yarn by stitches being held on first DP needle. Knit 1 row.Then work ribbing as before for 13 (15, 17) rows.Next row: * K1 from stitches being held on DP needle, K1 from stitches being worked. Repeat from * across. 14 (18, 22) stitches are back on the needle and the first loop opening has been made.
- Middle of Scarf:Continue to work in garter stitch (knit every row) until the middle of the scarf (after the loop opening) measures 11" (12.5", 14")
- Finish:Work second loop as before.To make second point, work in garter stitch for 18 (20, 24) rows or for approximately 2" (2.25", 2.75"). Next Row: K1, K2 tog, K across remaining stitchesRepeat this row until 2 stitches remain.Bind off. Weave in any yarn ends.