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« Molly's Sketchbook: Pom Pom Scarf | Main | Molly's Sketchbook: A New Adjustable Unisex Apron and Simple Dishtowels »

Laura's Loop: Grecian Rib Scarf

Someone once told me, "If you aren't ready to rip it out, then you aren't ready to knit." Years later, I fully understand. Ripping things out, or rather the ability to rip things out, is one of the many reasons I love to knit. Another reason, which goes hand-in-hand, is that I never stop learning from knitting. And now, a quick tale of both...

Recently I was working on a project that was sure to be my favorite of the season. It was a vintage-inspired, fitted cardigan vest. I had worked out the shaping and paired it with a (new-to-me) handsome stitch I had just fallen in love with,  the Grecian Rib Stitch. I was sure the combination of the stitch with the cut couldn't be beat!  Oh, how wrong I was. 

The Grecian Rib Stitch slants... a lot... even after blocking. I finished the back of the vest, and suspicious, I rigorously blocked it, only to see my askew darts still pointing off toward the top left shoulder. What should have been somewhat of a rectangle turned out to be quite the rhombus. Needless to say, I started ripping. The good news: one, I learned the nuances of this lovely stitch, and two, the Grecian Rib Scarf was born.

The Grecian Rib Stitch lends itself beautifully to bias knitting, with softly textured ribs that move gracefully from one corner to the other. And for total elegance (and comfort!), I used Jade Sapphire's sumptuous Zaego 6-ply cashmere. It's so soft and beautiful, I felt lucky to use it, not just once, but twice!

While it's no vest, this Grecian Rib Scarf makes me smile and is, in fact, a favorite of mine. Here's to ripping things out, may it be rare, but fruitful!

The Materials

The Pattern


8 stitches = 1 inch in stitch pattern

Finished Dimensions

With Tassels: 6 inches wide by 88 inches long

Without Tassels: 6 inches wide by 78 inches long

Pattern Notes

Click here for a photo-tutorial explaining Grecian Rib Stitch.


Cast on 5 stitches.


Row 1: *Knit the 2nd stitch, lift this stitch over the first stitch and off the needle as if to bind off, knit the 1st stitch normally, repeat from * to last stitch, knit into front and back (kfb). (6 stitches)

Row 2: (K1, p1) to end.

Row 3: *Knit the 2nd stitch, lift this stitch over the first stitch and off the needle as if to bind off, knit the 1st stitch normally, repeat from * to last 2, k1, kfb. (7 stitches)

Row 4: P1, (k1, p1) to end. 

Repeat the last 4 rows, 20 more times. (47 stitches)

Repeat Rows 1 and 2, one more time. (48 stitches)

Work Even

Next Row: *Knit the 2nd stitch, lift this stitch over the first stitch and off the needle as if to bind off, knit the 1st stitch normally, repeat from * to end.

Next Row: (K1, p1) to end.

Repeat last 2 rows, until piece measures approximately 62 inches from cast on edge.


Row 1: K2tog, *knit the 2nd stitch, lift this stitch over the first stitch and off the needle as if to bind off, knit the 1st stitch normally, repeat from * to end. (47 stitches)

Row 2: K1, (p1, k1).

Row 3: K2tog, k1, *knit the 2nd stitch, lift this stitch over the first stitch and off the needle as if to bind off, knit the 1st stitch normally, repeat from * to end. (46 stitches)

Row 4: (K1, p1) to end.

Repeat Rows 1- 4, 20 more times. (6 stitches)

Repeat Decrease Rows 1 and 2, one more time. (5 stitches)

Bind of 5 in knit.

Weave in the ends.

Add Tassels

Make 2 tassles, each measuring approximately 5 to 5 1/2 inches long.

Wrap yarn around a 6 inch tall piece of cardboard. (I wrapped my yarn around about 40 times.) Cut your yarn.

Cut a 10 inch strand of yarn and thread it into a tapestry needle. At the top of the cardboard, bring the needle under the wraps of yarn. Remove the tapestry needle off and make a tight knot around the wrapped yarn. (Later, you will use the tails of this strand to attach the tassel to the scarf.)

At the opposite end of the tassel, carefully slide the blade of a scissor between the wrapped yarn and the cardboard. Cut the wrapped yarn, freeing it from the cardboard. 

Lay the tassel on a flat surface and with a second 10 inch stand of yarn, tie a tight knot approximately 3/4 inches from the top. Gently shake out your tassel and trim the ends so they are even.

Attach the Tassels

Attach a tassel to each end of the scarf by weaving in the tails of the tassel's knot. Make sure to weave the strands away from the cast on (or bind off) edge and then back towards it to fully secure your tassel. Our How to Weave in your Ends tutorial has some great tips!

And you've done it! You've made the Grecian Rib Stitch Scarf.

Reader Comments (56)

What a beautiful stitch!
February 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKrisha
looks like a beautiful scarf and quite easy once you get the stitch rhythm down. I think I will try it. any other yarn suggestions ( a bit less costly) would be appreciated.
February 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPam G.
Hi Pam-

You can use any DK/ light worsted yarn you like. Here is a link to our whole selection:[]=5

You'll need 600 yards total.

Thanks for your question!

February 13, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
I describe myself as a perpetual beginner when it comes to knitting. This looks like a stitch that will expand my repertoire a bit but is still fairly easy. Thank you for such a beautiful pattern and some other yarn recommendations.
February 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterYvonne
I would love to knit this scarf - but I am not clear enough on the stitch. I know it is me because I have to see things in action and not read how this is done.. the photos just are not enough......8-( thanks.
February 14, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbbade
Hi bbade-

We're so sorry to hear that you're having trouble with this. Please let us know what specifically you're having problems understanding and we'll be happy to help.

Thank you!

February 14, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
I live in Sweden, and we don't knit the same way, do you think you could help me translate this stitch into how I knit, because I would really really really like to knit it!
February 14, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMikaela
HI Mikaela-

We can certainly try to help. What specifically is your issue?

Thanks!- Molly
February 14, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee

This is beautiful! I am also a visual learning, more so from video and hands on than pictures, and I am having a hard time making sense of this stitch! Can I ask where you learned it and if you know of any video tutorials?

Thanks so much :)
February 14, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJess
I look forward to knitting this lovely scarf. Thank you for the pattern.
February 14, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPaige
Hi Jess, I actually got the stitch from a vintage sweater pattern booklet. I have never seen it anywhere else and am not sure about available videos. The Grecian Plait Stitch is quite similar (the wrong side is purled across rather thank k1,p1), there might be videos of that somewhere online.

As for the Grecian Rib, essentially... place your right needle into the second stitch on the left needle (see top right picture under Pattern Notes) and knit it (see top left picture). Then with your right needle, insert it purlwise into that second stitch you just knit and pull it up and over the first stitch and off your left needle (see bottom left picture). Then knit the first stitch normally (see bottom left picture).

I hope this helps. Thanks for writing in. -Laura
February 15, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Hi Laura, Thanks for the additional explanation. Now I GET IT!! Just trying to figure out the best yarn now. Thank you are an awesome project.
February 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRobyn
Still don't get it - if you are slipping the second stitch over the first stitch, aren't you decreasing? I cannot visualise this and the3 photo is no help at all to me I am afraid. Please help - I have never had a stitch puzzle like this before - and I have been knitting for over 63 years...
February 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterYvette
Hi Yvette, Hang in there. We will get you doing this stitch! I just emailed you some additional notes on the pattern, but the email bounced back. Can you please verify your email address. Please let me know if you have any more questions. Thanks for writing in. -Laura
February 16, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Beautiful scarf! Can't wait to knit it. The neutral is so perfect for this pattern. I think I'll use a nice dove grey. What do you think of the Cascade 220 Superwash Sport line for this?
February 20, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKiara
Hi Kiara-

A sportweight yarn is a bit thinner than the original yarn that this was knit in. But it could still work, you'd just end up with a thinner scarf, or a looser stitch.

We recommend using DK weight yarn for this project. You can see our entire selection here:[]=5

Thank you!

February 20, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Hello, I'm not speak Eglish but the stitch is it the same that this video?

Sorry I'm try to explain :)

February 27, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLaura Tello
Hello Laura Tello. Thank you for writing in. That link shows a very similar stitch to our Grecian Rib Stitch. In the video, she doesn't bring the second stitch over the first and off the needle before knitting the first stitch. That missing step is the only difference between ours and hers. The look of the stitch is very similar, just not exactly the same. Thank you again. Laura.
February 27, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee

I am still having trouble with it too...cannot figure out what I am doing wrong but it does NOT look like yours! Can you e-mail me the extra info as well? ;) thanks so much!
March 1, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJess
Gaah! I don't understand this knit at all, I've tried and tried but it looks nothing like yours...When the second stitch is knitted and lifted over the first stitch, do i have it (the lifted second stich that is) on the rigth needle or do I drop it off from the needle? Or do I have it on the right needle and pull it over the first stitch when I've knitted that one? I would really really be superglad if I could get some hang on this stich.
March 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMikaela
Hi Mikaela, you drop that second stitch off the needle! Another reader/commenter posted a link to a video to a very similar stitch pattern. If you check out Laura Tello's comment and my response to it, I think you'll get it right away!!! Please let me know if you have more questions. Thanks. --Laura
March 19, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
I'm sorry but I still don't get it! And I have been knitting for 8 years so I'm no beginner...I knit the second, lift it over the first stitch and slip it so that one is gone, and then I knit the first stitch from the front like a normal stitch, and slip it off, and go on like that til the last one, that one I knit first in the front and then in the back. What do I do wrong??Please please please help! Is there any chans you coult take more close-up-pictures? Or make a video? Or do you want me to mail you a picture of my not at all grecian rib?

When I look on the video she knits the second stitch and then the first and slip them both off,and your comment to that is "In the video, she does bring the second stitch over the first and off the needle before knitting the first stitch. That missing step is the only difference between ours and hers" it just makes me comfused...
March 20, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMikaela
Hi Again Mikaela. I am sorry the video was confusing. I thought the visual might help. I am going to email you some more extensive photos.

Here are the steps, a bit more wordy than in the pattern: knit the second stitch (at this point there will be a new stitch on your right-hand needle and the first and second stitch will still be on your left-hand needle). Then, with your right-hand needle pick up the second stitch (the one you just knit) and pull it up and over the first stitch and off the left-hand needle. Now knit the first stitch as usual! --Laura
March 21, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Could I get the additional images? For some reason I too am having difficulty despite the added instructions!
March 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKristina
Kristina, I just emailed them to you! Hope it helps!! --Laura
April 2, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
I just saw this scarf and tried to knit this grecian rib but after read the others comments still I cannot figure it could you please send me more clearly on the pattern. Thanks
June 25, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPoon
Hi Poon, I just emailed you! Let me know if you have any other questions. --Laura
June 26, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Laura, thanks for quick response It is very clear, will try again and let you know. I love to try a new stitch when I saw this scarf I pick a yard and needle and try it----Poon
June 27, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPoon
Could I please get some additional help/images as well? This scarf is stunning but I'm lost!
August 9, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterpooja
Thanks! Email is coming your way, Pooja! -Laura
August 11, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Geez, I am so confused. I am new to knitting but I like this scarf so much and I don't want to give up. Please, can I get the additional images. Thanks
August 29, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAlexandra
Alexandra... there is an email coming your way! Laura
August 30, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Thank you so much. I totally understand it now.
August 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAlexandra
hello, I did the gray scarf and turned out beautifull, thank you could you please send me the aditional information on this grecian scarf so to be able to do it I am a beginner and learn better with images
September 21, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterannette

What is the multiple for the grecian rib patteren? I need it to practice the stitch, thanks!
October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStrix
Could you forward those extra pictures you mention above. I too am confused
October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea
Hello from Montana! Could you send me the extra pictures too?
October 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKendall
Hi Kendall,
Happy to send you the extra images.
They are headed your way!
I hope you find them helpful.
November 1, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee

I am fairly new at knitting but have had good results with the patterns I have tried so far thanks to YouTube and such. I am trying to figure this pattern out. Unlike the other questions though I am confused with the next part of the pattern. I believe I have figured the Grecian stitch out but then I go on to knit and purl the next row and when I go to do the Grecian stitch all I have is a big criss-crossed mess of stitches that I can't tell apart, so I don't know which stitch to knit first. I know it is hard explaining through writing but if you can figure out how to help me I would greatly appreciate your time. Thank you!

December 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSarah
Hi Sarah (NewKnitter).
This is an ambitious project for a new knitter. When you look closely at your needle, if you tug down very gently, can you start to see the order of the stitches?
I am going to email you some additional images, just in case there is a step you are missing.
December 20, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Beautiful scarf! wondering if you can make a tutorial of the main stitch.
I'm still learning. Thank you.
December 25, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJackie
Hi Jackie-

We don't have plans to do a further tutorial on this stitch at the moment but are happy to help with any specific questions you might have. What exactly are you having problems with?

Thank you!

December 26, 2012 | Registered Commenterpurl bee

Can you send me additional pictures of the scarf? I tried making it tonight, but it doesn't seem to be working.

January 6, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLisa
Hello, I'm currently knitting this scarf. My side edges are curling up a lot. I am using a similar yarn but realized was using US8 needles instead of US5. Is this why it's curling? Did you block the scarf? The edges look so flat on the pictures. Thanks.
January 19, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterzaida
Hi Zaida,

It is fine if you are using an US8 rather than a US5, as long as your gauge is right. Are you getting 8 stitches to the inch?

If you are getting fewer stitches to the inch and your fabric is looser than mine, that might be a cause of the curled edges. I definitely blocked this project, pretty heavily actually. It helped the nubby ridges relax and even out and eased the edges a bit as well.

Let me know if I can help in any other way.
January 21, 2013 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Both the right side and the wrong side of this scarf looks beautiful! The right side looks like the Grecian Rib as pictured above and the wrong side actually looks quite similar to a moss stitch. Also, about half way through the increase, I switched my needles to lace needles. Lace needles have sharper needle points and they make inserting the needle in between the stitches and passing over much easier. My scarf is curling up (but only slightly) as well and I'm planning to block before I wear it. Thank you for the lovely pattern!
January 28, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJen
Hi, I really want to knit this lovely scarf however I still don't get it!

I understood knit second stitch and lift, and no idea after that.

Could you send me an extra pictures??

What is the 'off the needle'?? thanks :)
February 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterWON
They are coming your way!
February 8, 2013 | Registered Commenterpurl bee
Could I get the additional pictures as well? I've been trying to get this stitch for an hour and am still mind boggled.
February 10, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDominique
Hi Dominique.
I just sent you the pictures. Let me know if you have any questions after you see them!
February 11, 2013 | Registered Commenterpurl bee

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