Crochet Shells and Rails Scarf – Free Pattern

A free crochet pattern for a scarf with shells and rows of double crochet – easy enough for a beginner but still has an interesting pattern!

Crochet Shells and Rails Scarf - Free Pattern

This has been my favorite scarf this winter – it’s wide, warm and so so soft! And the colors are just beautiful. It was also fun to make because the pattern uses easy double crochets, but is not boring. It has three shells and two sets of double crochets for each row. Plus, it’s long enough that it can be worn many different ways, or you could even sew the ends together and make it a cowl.

And, may I present to you, my very first chart on the blog! I created it myself, so it’s not perfect, but I think it’ll do the trick to help you understand the pattern. To print it, click one of the three buttons at the bottom of this post and it will print just the pattern and nothing else!

Crochet Shells and Rails Scarf Chart

Crochet Shells and Rails Scarf

Written and Designed by Sara of My Merry Messy Life – © 2013


  • Hook: I
  • Yarn: 2 skeins Deborah Norville – Soft Worsted Prints, Lilac Ridge (where to buy)
  • Scissors & tapestry needle to cut and sew in tails


  • CH = chain
  • DC = double crochet
  • SH ST = shell stitch (6 double crochets in the same space)
  • SP = space
  • SK = skip

Crochet Shells and Rails Scarf - free pattern for an elegant scarf!


Row 1

  • CH 22
  • In the 4th CH from the hook, work 1 DC
  • Work a DC in the next CH
  • SK 1 CH
  • Work a SH ST (6 DC in the same CH)
  • SK 1 CH
  • Work 1 DC in each of the next 3 CH’s
  • SK 1 CH
  • Work another SH ST (6 DC in the same CH) in the next CH
  • SK 1 CH
  • Work 1 DC in each of the next 3 CH’s
  • SK 1 CH
  • Work a SH ST (6 DC in the same CH)
  • Work 1 DC in each of the last two CH’s

Row 2

  • CH 3
  • Work 1 DC in the next SP (in between the 2nd DC and the SH ST of the previous row)
  • Work a SH ST (6 DC in the same CH) in the middle of the previous SH ST (see pics below for clarification)
  • Work 1 DC on the top of each of the next 3 previous DC’s
  • Work a SH ST (6 DC in the same CH) in the middle of the previous SH ST
  • Work 1 DC on the top of each of the next 3 previous DC’s
  • Work a SH ST (6 DC in the same CH) in the middle of the previous SH ST
  • Work 1 DC on the top of each of the previous DC’s

Repeat Row 2 for the remainder of the scarf! I usually make mine about 5 feet long, which is long enough for me to tie and wear many different ways.

Here are some closeup photos to help you as you work the scarf:

Each row starts with a chain (CH) 3. The first double crochet (DC) is worked in next space (not the same space as the CH 3). Each shell is worked in the middle of the previous shell, so in between the 2 sets of 3 DC’s.

Crochet Shells and Rails Scarf - Steps and How To

The double crochet’s (DC’s) are worked on just the top piece of yarn of the previous double crochet so that they stay perfectly lined up. Then, I have a picture showing what the end of each row should look like, and a cross-section of the 3 DC’s, a shell stitch, and 3 DC’s.

Crochet Shells and Rails Scarf Pattern - Steps and How-To

Merry Crocheting!

Knitting Supplies at

About Sara McFall

Sara is the owner and founder of My Merry Messy Life, which started in 2011 as a way to chronicle her journey to a natural, chemical-free lifestyle and to share her passions of mothering, real food, homeschooling and crochet. She is a mama to three precious and energetic little boys and wife to a university professor who loves to sing, dance ballet and ballroom, and live simply and naturally.


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