How to make knotted fringe on shawls

Updated April 17, 2017

A knotted fringe is a nice way to finish a shawl or blanket. The fringe can be simple or intricately knotted. Depending on the style you use, the fringe can be the focal point for the whole shawl. A knotted fringe easily can be added to a knitted, crocheted or fabric shawl. Making a knotted fringe takes some time, but it is not difficult, and the results are worth the effort.

Determine the desired length of the fringe. It is easier to trim the fringe than to add to it, so if you're not sure of the length you want, make it longer. Keep in mind you will lose about one inch for each knot.

Locate a book or a piece of stiff cardboard several inches wide and the length of your desired fringe. Wrap the yarn or thread around the book several times. If you're using cardboard, be careful not to wrap so tightly that the cardboard bends. Cut the yarn along the centre of one end of the book so that you have several strands of yarn twice as long as your desired fringe.

Pick up three to six strands and fold them in half so that the ends are even.

With the wrong side of the shawl facing you, insert the crochet hook or latch hook from front to back about 1/2 inch from the edge. If the shawl is crocheted or knitted, you may need to position the fringe so that it complements the stitch pattern. If the shawl is fabric, you may need to use a small steel crochet hook or an awl to make a hole in the fabric before adding the fringe.

Use the hook to pick up the centre of the folded strands and pull the loop through the shawl. Use the hook to pull the loose ends through the loop to make a knot. Pull the knot snug, but not so tight that it distorts the fabric. The knot should lay almost flat.

Repeat the process, spacing the fringe evenly along the length of the shawl. Cut more strands as needed.

Lay the shawl flat and smooth the fringe. Trim the fringe to a uniform length.


For a more intricate fringe, start at one end of the shawl and split one of the tassels in half. Split the adjacent tassel in half. Tie the right-hand strands around the left, and repeat along the length of the scarf. Several rows of this splitting and knotting creates a diamond pattern.

Things You'll Need

  • Shawl
  • Embroidery floss or yarn
  • Book or stiff cardboard (length of the desired fringe)
  • Crochet hook or latch hook
  • Scissors
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Barbara Thompson has a Bachelor's degree in Information Technology from Clayton State University and more than 10 years experience developing print and web-based training materials for various industries. For the last seven years, Barbara has worked in a public university system designing online college courses and developing training materials for faculty and students.