| | |

How to Knit a Beautiful Cowl with Leftover Yarn Anyone Will Love

Check out these 7 free knitting patterns that will create a striking cowl with leftover yarn

Cheapskate. Miser. Skin-flint. Such harsh words for such an admirable quality, that of being frugal.

Well, to me it feels admirable! At least, it is when I’m doing it. When my husband is raising his eyebrows over my desire to buy something, well, then it’s just unfair.


Anyway, one part of my life where I tend to be quite frugal is in my knitting. I love to knit, and I do love to buy yarn, but I have so much unused yarn that it seems a shame to ignore it when I want to knit something new. (I mean, y’all have seen my stash…)

Just in case you needed a refresher… or just wanted to feel a little better about yourself.

The point is, when the wind comes sweeping down the plain (which it does, quite often, in Ohhhhhhhh-klahoma), one’s neck can get rather chilly. And while one could knit a scarf, one might prefer a cowl.

And one might get rather annoyed at saying “one could do this or might prefer that.”

Our family has a big drawer packed with scarves, but I’m enamored with cowls these days. No need to tuck in the ends to keep the scarf from falling off your neck. Just slip a cowl over your head, and your neck thanks you.

Do you hanker for a cowl? Like me, would you really rather not rush out and buy new yarn for the purpose? Read on — I’ve collected a delightful assortment of knitting patterns for a cowl with leftover yarn.

Free Knitting Patterns for Cowls Using Leftover Yarn

Leftovers Cowl: This cowl looks nothing like a “leftovers cowl,” but that’s exactly what this is. It’s a beautifully and simply designed long cowl smoothly joined with Kitchener stitch at the end.

Inspira Cowl: A few partial skeins of yarn, stranded colorwork, and corrugated ribbing make this charming cowl stand out.

Russian Wedding Band Cowl: I love the triple loops swirling together that were based on the look of Russian interlocking wedding rings. The pattern writer also came up with two variations: “Felting, Party of Four” and the Short Stacks Cowl.

Sock Yarn Scrap Bag Cowl

Sock Yarn Scrap Bag Cowl: I love using sock yarn for projects other than socks, and leftover sock yarn is practically inevitable when you knit socks. This pattern makes a beautiful, bright ribbed design. When I hankered for a cowl, this is the pattern I chose!

West Desert Hood: Here’s a gorgeous honeycomb-stitched cowl that would look magical with either an assortment of random colors or two to three strategically matched colors.

Manic Panic Cowl
Photo: Sarah Core

Manic Panic Cowl: I’m not sure which I love more: the name it shares with one of my favorite brands of hair dye (ha!) or the devil-may-care attitude it carries with its hodge-podge of random stripes in linen stitch.

Unisex Leftover Sock Yarn Neckwarmer: This cowl is a great option for a man who may feel that most cowls are a little too fancy or intricate for him.

Simon Cowl: You can’t help loving the clever punny name! Not to mention the lovely bursts of the color woven through the vertical stripes.

Are you ready to knit a cowl with leftover yarn for winter? Be charmingly frugal (not a cheapskate, thank you very much) with one of these great patterns.