free knitting pattern…burberry inspired cowl neck scarf

a slight twist on garter girl style today…this summer i was looking through instyle magazine and saw an awesome cowl neck scarf from burberry, but was in sticker shock over the price…$750.

knitted cowl - julianne smith - view 10

before i even get into this post, i need to be upfront with a major disclaimer. in general, i’m not a fan of ripping off designs. while i’m aware that my cowl neck scarf is inspired by burberry, there are two issues at play…1.) the price tag is a little hefty even for me, and 2.) i haven’t actually been able to find the scarf itself in any burberry store. i’ve looked endlessly online and been to four different burberry stores with no luck. every sales people i spoke with had no idea what i was talking about. i still loved the cowl and wanted to try my hand at creating a knitted pattern.

knitted cowl - julianne smith - view 2

i’m by no means a knitting expert, i just love to do it. i had lots of help and support from my knitting group. i first looked through vogue knitting stitchionary vol. two: cables, which i checked out from the library. i found an allover cable idea (#157, reversible ribbed cable). i used this cable pattern as a base, but then katie from my knitting group helped me to modify it quite a bit to get it to look exactly how i wanted.

knitted cowl - julianne smith - view 3

thankfully, the instyle blurb listed that the cowl was made of wool and silk. so, i headed up to a tangled skein (thank you, allison) and picked out a really soft merino silk with a slight shine. i used two balls exactly. the cowl in these particular pictures is color “mousse #132.” it is for a friend who totally deserves it! i also picked up “charcoal #131” for myself, except that on the plane to engage i left an entire ball of yarn…whoops! i just ordered another one, so hopefully i’ll get mine done soon. i can’t wait to wear it and love it all winter!

knitted cowl - julianne smith - view 9

without further ado, here is the free burberry inspired cowl neck scarf pattern.

burberry inspired cowl neck scarf

size 10 knitting needles
2 balls cascade yarns venezia merino silk
cable needle
blunt point eyelet needle for stitching ends together
crochet hook for weaving in ends

provisional cast on 58 stitches
rows 1 – 10: slip first stitch on each row and stockinette stitch remaining stitches (knit odd rows, purl even rows)
row 11: slip first stitch, k 2, slip 8 onto cable needle (hold to front), k 8, k cable needle, k 20, slip 8 onto cable needle (hold to front), k 8, k cable needle, k 3
row 12 – 24: slip first stitch on each row and stockinette stitch remaining stitches (same as rows 1 – 10)
row 25: slip first stitch, k 20, slip 8 onto cable needle (hold to back), k 8, k cable needle, k 21
row 26 – 30: slip first stitch on each row and stockinette stitch remaining stitches (same as rows 1-10)

repeat pattern to desired length. (note: my cowl in the above pictures is 20 inches long, which was 4 pattern repeats.) remove the provisional cast on stitches. kitchener stitch the last row together with the provisional cast on stitches. weave in all ends.

important notice…this is a FREE pattern. this pattern is for personal use only. it may not be copied, reproduced, distributed or altered in way. do not reproduce this pattern to sell and/or sell any garment that you make using this pattern. anyone may use this pattern for charity, there is no need to ask for permission.

knitted cowl - julianne smith - view 5

NOTE: due to the volume of emails that i receive about this pattern, i will not be able to respond to requests for knitting help. i’ve gotten quite a bit of email, comments and ravelry messages about the kitchener stitch and how to finish the project. it is difficult to answer them all and try to explain the kitchener stitch in writing. the kitchener stitch is a tricky technique if you’ve never done it before. if you are having trouble, there are lots of helpful tutorials online. practice and become familiar with the kitchener stitch before you start this pattern. if you are still having trouble, just skip it. cast on and off as normal and seam up the ends in your preferred method. this will leave a visible seam (unlike with the kitchener stitch), but you can wear it in the back and no one will notice.


  1. Madhu December 1, 2016


    I think I have lost the plot here. So when you join the two edges with Kitchener stitch , is this the width or the length?
    I have finished 16 inch so that makes it 8 ? As far as i can see that 8 inch hole will not go through the head . I am missing something here.
    The length appears to be from the mo of stitches cast on?

  2. Karen November 30, 2016

    I’m wondering why you didn’t do the reversible ribbed cable. Could it be the Kirchner join would be too daunting? I can understand that. I did a fast ribbed cowel for my daughter and had a time doing the ribbed join.

  3. Martha October 20, 2016

    Looking forward to trying this!

  4. Jackie August 12, 2016

    I have just finished this scarf. First time I have used the provisional cast on and Kitchener stitches (googles instructions and watched you tube videos). Love it! Going to make one for mum now :).

  5. eleanor kopp February 10, 2016

    Do you slip a stitch every row or just stockinette row on 1-10???

  6. eleanor kopp February 10, 2016

    Do you slip first stitch on the stockinette rows or every row on 1-10? Thanks.

  7. Sandra Ross December 14, 2015

    This is absolutely Fabulous!! made a scarf like this. Awesoome!! hehe. But not from this pattern.:) Great!

  8. Michelle November 28, 2015

    Thank you for sharing this beautiful pattern. I just started using some Yarnbox wool that I wasn’t sure about the color. I just finished the first repeat and the yarn has completed come alive with this gorgeous pattern! I’m a little obsessed with it right now.

    I looked through all the comments because I do have one question about the repeat. I did see my question mentioned in one other comment and I’m hoping that someone who has finished the pattern can help. When I count out the rows, there are 13 rows between the cables in the repeat, but 15 when you add the 5 rows of stockinette at the end to the 10 at the beginning. I am thinking about reducing the number of rows at the beginning from 10 to 8 so that I’ll have 13 rows between each cabled row. Does this make sense? Or is there a reason to alternate between 15 and 13 rows between cables that isn’t apparent to someone like me who hasn’t finished the cowl.

  9. Pat November 22, 2015

    What is the purpose of slipping the first stitch? Also not sure I am doing this right. This pattern is done on regular needles with a cable basically on the top and bottom . Then it is sewn together. Does this sound right?

  10. Veronica November 14, 2015

    Thank you for this beautiful cowl pattern. I love the wavy effect of the cables. Last winter I made several for gifts for my friends here in Florence in different colors of lovely merinos wool that i found. The effect is always the same even though the color changes from geranium to navy blue to pistachio green, etc. I also used the seamed version instead of kitchener and it seemed to present no problem since the yarn was not bulky. I used 6 mm knitting needles.. .

  11. SamT July 29, 2015

    I just finished a version of this using slightly bulkier wool and fewer (40) stitches with only 6 stitches on the cable needle (mostly because I didn’t think I’d have enough wool for the original pattern). It was my first time trying Kitchener stitch, which was fiddly to begin with but well worth the effort. I love the result, and can’t wait to try it in different yarns. Thank you!

  12. Arna April 12, 2015

    Thank you for this pattern! Just casted on and have worked now about 10 cm. Looks nice for now. :)

  13. Moondra March 18, 2015

    I absolutely LOVE this scarf, I did this with 6 pattern repeats and OMG gorgeous! For many years I avoided doing the kitchener stitch,( I was afraid of it LOL) but because of this scarf and pattern? It’s the ONLY stitch I use to close all of my scarves, such a huge difference than sewing seams together!
    I have already made around 15 of these, for friends, myself (various colors), etc. And I get asked all the time where did you buy that???
    So thanks Garter Girl!

  14. Denise February 15, 2015

    This cowl is beautiful. Do you think it would work using Rowan felted tweed yarn?

  15. Antagone February 7, 2015

    If you guys are having trouble with the kitchener stitch, check out TECHKnitting’s two posts. This is how I learned and I think the diagrams are really clear and useful.

    Traditional Kitchener:

    Modified Kitchener for you gals who lose your eyeblunts:

    I prefer the traditional method (I learned to needle point before I learned to knit), but both work great.

  16. thank you for share!

  17. Lissa December 17, 2014

    Just love this pattern…have made this cowl so many times for gifts and for myself. It’s a really fun and easy project that challenged me as a beginner and really helped me advance my skills…use the Kitchener stich with provisional cast on all the time now. Thank you so much.

  18. Marie December 15, 2014

    A thousand thanks – no, make that a million – for sharing your wonderful pattern. I’ve just finished knitting the cowl, and it is far and away the most beautiful I have ever knitted. Here’s the link to my Ravelry project so that you can see the photos, which don’t actually do it justice – it’s much nicer in real life: In fact I love it so much that I started on another one the very same day I finished! It’s in a dark blue and I’ll post photos on the same Ravelry page when I’ve finished.

    One tiny thing – I initially bought the wrong wool because your link says “cascade yarns venezia merino silk”, missing out the vital word ‘Chunky’. Your link to the page is ‘not found’, you see… I mention this in case other knitting newbies do the same as me – in my case, I bought a similar yarn to the Venezia Merino Silk and it turned out to be a very fine yarn indeed. Puzzled, I thought I’d double-check with other Ravellers before I started knitting and I’m glad I did. Incidentally, there’s a great site for alternative yarn options here:

  19. patti bailey December 3, 2014

    Looking at the comment about working this in the round, I thought the same thing at first until I read the pattern through…it seems there are cable stitches that are being worked left to right- so making this in the round seems impossible for this pattern.

    Another point though.. the Kitchener stitch at the end ISNT as bad as it seems, you are binding off the same as you normally would only you are taking both the ends together at the same time when you start that knit stitch to do the bind off…. That’s the easiest way for me to “word it”.. Experienced knitters will get the point, beginners once you see a picture of it will get the “ah huh” moment. It’s quite simple, nothing to fear!!!

    I love this look and long gone are the days of knitting 6 foot long scarves for that beautiful trendy look and…. We won’t lose them either!!! Convenient both ways!!! Happy holidays!!! Thank you for this awesome pattern!!! :D

  20. Donna November 5, 2014

    Lovely pattern…working on one now!

  21. Jennifer October 20, 2014

    Loved this pattern so much! Thanks for sharing :) I may convert it to knit in the round just as a tube and I see lots of people have asked in comments how to do that. So if I get that right I can share it. Thank you again!!!

  22. Monique September 12, 2014

    Can this be knit in one piece on a circular ? How many stitches would you say to cast on circular needles? Thank you Monique

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