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Scarf and flower a handy accessory

Question: Several years ago you gave the directions in your column for making a scarf with a matching flower that could be worn in several ways _ including as a head wrap. I have recently undergone chemotherapy and have lost my hair temporarily. Would you give those directions again? I promised to share them with the women in my support group. _ Ms. L.B., Peoria, Ill.

Answer: I'd be happy to. This wonderful accessory can be worn as a head wrap, at the neck, around the waist or as a stole with the flower worn in the center. So you can begin using it as a head wrap, and then, depending on the fabric you select, as soon as you have your beautiful locks back, enjoy it as a stole or neck wrap.

The yardage requirement is 1 yards of 45-inch fabric. A soft fabric will give you the best effect. You don't want bulk.

1. Cut your pieces out as shown in Illustration A. There is the scarf itself, the strip for the flower, the tiny circle for finishing off the underside of the flower, and the loop through which the scarf will be pulled.

2. Making a rolled hem by hand or by machine, finish off all four edges of the scarf. I prefer a rolled hem to a serged hem on scarves, but if you have a serger and would like to use it, by all means do so.

3. With right sides together,fold the loop in half lengthwise, and sew a \-inch seam. Turn it right sides out and set aside.

4. Next, create the flower: Fold the strip in half lengthwise, with the wrong sides together (the right sides will be to the outside). Following the stitching line in Illustration B, lengthen your stitch slightly and sew along the cut edges of the fabric. Notice that you start only { inch from the fold, make a crescent shape and return to { inch from the fold at the opposite end. Leave long thread tails.

Trim off any excess, making a \-inch seam allowance. Pulling the bobbin thread at one end, gather the strip a little and then wind it around until the flower is formed (Illustration C). Keep the seam edges even at the bottom and sew these seams together by hand to secure the flower in its finished shape.

5. Turn the edges of the small circle under \ inch and place it over the raw edges of the flower's base. Whip the circle patch to the flower, making the stitches as invisible as possible.

6. Finally, turn under each end of the loop \ inch and stitch (again by hand) to the underside of the circle (Illustration D). Make one or two stitches reach clear through to the flower itself for extra strength. Again, be certain that none of these stitches show through to the front of your flower. Now your scarf with matching flower is ready.

To wear it as shown, first fold the scarf in half and slip the folded edge through the flower's loop.

Then wrap the scarf around your head and tuck the ends under. Position the flower where desired.

To create the bow, begin as outlined above. Then take each loose end of the scarf and pass it through the loop once more.

As you pull these ends through (one at a time), you'll see the bow take shape.

Questions may be addressed to: Sew What's New, c/o the St. Petersburg Times, 4900 Main St., Kansas City, Mo. 64112.