“A Trail of Leaves” Scarf

By  Deborah Anderson 

sizes: scarf, 5"x52"; pin, 4"

  • “A Trail of Leaves” Scarf
  • Scarf


  • Lightweight chiffon and silk fabrics, in autumn colors
  • Hand-dyed ribbons and fibers, in autumn colors
  • Brown silk fabric, 2”x22”
  • Metal pin back, 2”
  • Ultra-suede fabric, scrap


  • Sulky Solvy Water Soluble Stabilizer
  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Sewing machine and thread
  • Pinking shears
  • Beacon Adhesives Fabri-Tac

Basic Supplies

  • scissors, ruler, iron and ironing board, sewing needle, plastic bowl or bucket, towel, pen or marker
  • Scarf
  • 1. From chiffon and silk fabrics, cut approximately 50 teardrop shapes in varying sizes of 1-1/4"x2-1/4", 1"x2", and 3/4"x1-3/4". Taper ends to point, creating leaf shape. Use pinking shears to trim around edges.
  • 2. Remove stabilizer from package and unroll on work surface. Measure and cut 8"x56" piece (or longer for longer scarf). Cut both ends on angle diagonally. (Note: After soaking completed scarf, there may be shrinkage by about 4". Adjust width and length for longer/larger scarf.) Separate paper backing from stabilizer.
  • 3. Position leaf shapes randomly, with spaces between, on top of sticky side of stabilizer until entire surface is covered. Position hand-dyed ribbon around perimeter of stabilizer piece and in between leaf shapes.
  • 4. Remove paper backing from another sheet of stabilizer. Position stabilizer on top of fabric leaves and ribbons. Pin all three layers together.
  • 5. Use sewing machine to sew layers together, beginning in center of scarf and going around edges of each leaf using zigzag or straight stitch. After sewing around leaves, sew in between leaves and ribbon on open spaces in "grid" pattern. (Note: Using grid pattern helps hold leaves and ribbon together after stabilizer has dissolved.) Sew along ribbon edges.
  • 6. In plastic bowl or bucket, add warm water. Submerge scarf into water and gently move around. Pour out warm water; add new warm water to bucket and continue moving scarf around to release stabilizer. Repeat process until water becomes clear. Gently ring out scarf and place on towel to dry.
  • 7. If scarf has areas where sewing is needed, cut stabilizer slightly larger than area and position on scarf. Add ribbon or sewing on area as desired. Repeat process to remove stabilizer in plastic bowl with warm water.
  • Flower Pin
  • 1. Measure and cut 2"x22" brown silk fabric strip. Fold strip in half lengthwise. Iron flat. Fold one corner over diagonally at one end and iron flat. Repeat for the other end.
  • 2. Thread sewing needle with thread and tie knot on one end. Hand sew basting stitch 1/16" in from non-folded edge of strip. Starting on basted end, sew along edge to other end. Pull thread to gather fabric; tie knot and cut thread end. Begin rolling fabric strip (for about 1" length) into coil while pressing coil flat. Tack coil down with needle and thread.
  • 3. Continue rolling fabric into coil, manipulating flower shape as you go. After every 1" of rolling, sew through coil. Use needle-nose pliers to help grip sewing needle to pull sewing needle through thickness of coiled fabric if needed. Repeat process until all fabric is coiled. Sew through entire flower until secure.
  • 4. Cut 2" oval from ultra-suede fabric. Cut two slits on center of oval and insert pin back through slits. Close pin back.
  • 5. Apply Fabri-Tac to wrong side of oval piece (so pin back is on front) and press on back of flower. Hold firmly to let set.