Women’s Scarves are the perfect accessory. They’re both chic and functional, and complement just about any outfit, whether you’re headed to the office or grabbing brunch with friends. You can find scarves in any color, pattern, or style imaginable.

If you’re looking to embellish your wardrobe with a few scarves, you may be wondering how to wear scarves and make those fun knots and loops you’ve seen others pull off so seamlessly. 

Fortunately, we’re here to help. In this detailed guide, we’ll teach you how to tie a scarf in several classic and unique ways so you can quickly become the scarf tying queen of your friend group.

#1: The Classic Loop

Sometimes, the simplest approach can produce the most stunning results. This is certainly true of scarves where a classic loop can elevate your winter outfit in seconds. To achieve this look, you’ll need a long scarf and a mirror.1 The steps are quite easy and include:

  1. Drape the scarf around your neck with about a third of it on one side
  2. Take the long side of the scarf and loop it around the front of your neck
  3. Repeat step three for a double loop
  4. Pull the scarf from behind your neck so that both sides rest on your chest

The two sides of the scarf should hang down at about the same length. You can then adjust the tightness and drape of the neck loop for comfort.

Variations on the Classic Loop

Once you’ve mastered the basic loop, there are many variations you can use to add your own unique touch to your scarf style. Some of our favorites include:

  • Knotted classic loop – This style uses the classic loop method. However, once you’ve completed the classic loop, you’ll take the loose ends of the scarf and tie a knot on one side of your neck. No need to double knot here—a single knot will work perfectly.
  • Tucked loop – The tucked loop also begins with the classic loop procedure. Then, you’ll take the ends of your scarf, pull them back toward your shoulders, and tuck them under the scarf. This gives your scarf the look of an infinity scarf and keeps your neck warm on chilly days.
  • The cape – This simple variation is basically the classic loop with a literal twist. Instead of starting with a loose piece in the front, you’ll start in the back. When you finish, you’ll have the two hanging parts of your scarf resting over your shoulder blades, like a cape.
  • Simple shoulder toss – The ultimate casual scarf look is the shoulder toss. Begin as you would for the classic loop and, instead of wrapping the material all the way around your neck, simply toss it over your shoulder once.

These easy, yet stylish variations on the classic loop are excellent options if you’re looking for a quick style upgrade.

#2: French Scarf Knot

Have you ever French braided your hair? The intricate pattern of the crossing strands of hair creates a mesmerizing look. Did you know you can achieve a similar effect in a French scarf knot? 

Don’t be intimidated by the complex appearance. It’s actually quite simple and includes the following steps:

  1. Fold a long scarf in half lengthwise—you’ll have a loop on one side and loose ends at the other.
  2. Wrap the scarf behind your neck.
  3. Put one of the scarf’s ends over and then under the two sides of the loop.
  4. Take the other end and put it under then over the loop’s sides.
  5. Pull the ends to your desired tightness.

The result is a stunning woven pattern that’s sure to upgrade any outfit. Now that you know how to tie a scarf around your neck in a French knot, you’ll be able to wow your friends on your next girls’ night out.

Light blue and white scarf

#3: False Knot

Another intriguing method of scarf tying is the false knot. This little act of subterfuge is an enticing option for casual brunches or evenings out. It takes a bit of practice to get it right, but once you do, it’s a look you’ll return to over and over again. 

To make a false knot, you’ll need to:

  1. Drape the scarf around your neck evenly.
  2. Make a small loop on one side of the scarf.
  3. Pull the loose end of the same side through this loop.
  4. Don’t pull the end all the way through—you want to keep it open with your hand.
  5. Pull the other end of the scarf through this loop. 
  6. Tighten the knot to create a false knot.

The scarf will then drape down on both sides while being held in place by your loop.

#4: Hidden Knot

Another pretty style to try is the hidden knot. In this look, your scarf will drape over the knot. Tying a simple knot under the scarf helps keep the fabric in place when you move. 

This knot is quite simple to do with only three steps:

  1. Drape the scarf around your neck and wrap once, keeping the ends even.
  2. Tie a loose knot near your neck.
  3. Pull the front drape of the scarf over the knot to cover it.

This simple knot style will keep your neck warm and invigorate a comfy brunch outfit.

#5: Pretzel Knot

For a more challenging scarf style, try a pretzel knot. It’s not a true knot—rather, it’s more of a weave that you create with the scarf to get a pretzel-like pattern. 

To achieve this look, you’ll need to:

  1. Fold your scarf in half, so you have a loop on one side and loose ends on the other.
  2. Wrap the scarf around your neck.
  3. Hold the looped side with one hand and thread one of the ends through the loop.
  4. Take the other end and thread it over and then through the loop.
  5. Pull the ends lightly to straighten the scarf.

You can smooth the loop so that it remains flat or roll it slightly for a bulkier look. This style works especially well with scarves that have fringed ends.

Three scarfs with different knots

#6: Cowl

You don’t need an infinity scarf to make a cowl. You can achieve the same effect with your long scarves, too. It might take a few tries to get the tuck just right, but by following these steps, you’ll get the desired look:

  1. Drape the scarf around your neck with the loose ends at the front.
  2. Pull down one end so that the other end reaches your collar bone.
  3. Tug that short piece across the front of your neck.
  4. Tuck the short side under the other side of the scarf to make a loop.
  5. Wrap the longer side loosely over the loop.
  6. Tuck the end under the other side of your scarf to make a second loop.

After you’ve made your loops, tuck and adjust as needed. The key to getting this loose knot right is to get the first small loop tucked securely, so you have a solid base to work with.

#7: Scarf Top

Once you’ve mastered the other styles, try tying your scarf as a top. There are several methods to explain how to tie a scarf top, but one of our favorites is the halter style. This look is relatively simple to achieve and provides a comfy option for those hot summer days. 

You’ll need a longer, square-shaped scarf for this top. Then:

  1. Fold your scarf in half.
  2. Wrap the scarf around the back of your neck with the loose ends in front of you.
  3. Cross one side over the other. 
  4. Pull the scarf around your chest and ribcage, so the ends are in the back.
  5. Tie the back tightly and arrange the front, so it fits comfortably.

This style is perfect for lounging at the pool or sipping beach-side drinks on sunny summer afternoons.

Scarf Top Variations

You can also utilize scarf tops to give you extra warmth on chilly days. Two warming scarf top options we love include:

  • Belted drape – A blanket scarf can become a fashion statement when you drape it over your shoulders and secure it with a trendy belt. You’ll be cozy and stylish without the bulk of an extra sweater. 
  • Shawl – You may be asking yourself, what is a shawl? While not exactly a top, a shawl can provide a similar layer of warmth and coverage. A large, square scarf is the perfect tool for a shawl. Want to learn how to wear a shawl? Wrap it around your shoulders and drape the ends behind you for a full-coverage scarf shawl.

Karen Kane: Your Source for Quality and Comfortable Scarves

Scarves aren’t only useful for keeping your neck warm. They’re sophisticated, fashionable, and versatile. So, the next time you’re bored with your wardrobe, try dressing up your outfit with a quality scarf. 

The method you use to tie your scarf can change your look instantly. A loose loop is perfect for casual outings, while a tight side knot will dress up your business wear. Having several scarf-tying options in your arsenal allows you to maximize your style without springing for a whole new wardrobe.

At Karen Kane, we understand the importance of quality and sustainably-sourced clothing and accessories. That’s why all of our collections, including our scarf collection, prioritize both. Browse our online store today to see how you can enhance your wardrobe and style.


  1. Instyle. You’ll Never Run Out of Solutions for How to Tie a Scarf. https://www.instyle.com/how-tos/how-to-tie-scarf-gifs