Crocodile Scarf Tail

So this is where I’m up to with the crocodile scarf. I looked at a few different websites explaining the crocodile stitch and while everyone does seem to do it slightly differently once I got my head around the general idea it was actually very easy. I also discovered that my main issue with watching videos to learn stitches is that I get bored after about 10 seconds. Apart from videos there didn’t seem to be much of anything else and what there was was quite sketchy and vague. So for everyone out there like me here is a detailed photo tutorial of how I created the scarf so far….

Crochet terms are English as always so have a look at the conversion chart for the American alternatives. Also as I’m left-handed all the photos show the steps as seen by a left-handed crocheter – I’ll try to give written instructions for both left and right-handers but if you’re right-handed and struggling try flipping the photos and if you’re still confused then leave a comment or drop me an email.

Some of the instructions I watched flipped the work back and forth to create the scales however I found it easier to always have the front facing me and spin the work. Experiment and do whatever works for you though.


Step 1. Chain 3

Step 2. tr into the 3rd chain from the hook.

Step 3. turn 90 degrees anticlockwise (clockwise if you’re right-handed) and crochet 5tr around the tr from step 2.

Step 4. ch1 and turn the work 180 degrees anticlockwise (clockwise if you’re right-handed) and crochet 5tr around the initial chains from step 1.

Step 5. ch2, slip stitch into the centre top of the scale. chain 2 and tr into the top of the scale again. This is the basis for the next scale.

Step 6. turn 90 degrees anticlockwise (clockwise if you’re right-handed) and crochet 5tr around the tr from the previous step.

Step 7. ch1, turn 180 degrees anticlockwise (clockwise if you’re right-handed) and crochet 5tr around the chains from step 5.

Repeat steps 5-7 until the tail is as long as you would like it. My scarf has 8 scales in the tail. Now we need to increase up to the width of the main body of the scarf….


Step 8. ch2, tr around the last tr of the scale

Step 9. ch1, tr into the centre top of the scale, ch1, 2tr between the first and second tr of the scale

Step 10. Follow steps 6 & 7 to create a scale around the 2 trebles you just completed

Step 11. We now need to attach this scale to the single treble from step 9. Turn the work 180 degrees so it is as shown in the photo below and insert the hook under the single tr as shown by the red arrow and slip 1 stitch.

Step 12. Keeping the work in this orientation follow steps 6 & 7 again to create a second scale around the chains and trebles on the other side (this can be a little awkward the first few times).

We are now going to increase again on the next row.

Step 13. ch2, tr around last tr of scale, ch1, tr into centre of scale, ch1, 2tr between the scales, ch1, tr into centre of scale, ch1, 2tr into 1st treble of the end scale.

Step 14. Repeat steps 10-12 to create scales around each set of 2 trebles.

To make the increase up to the full scarf width gradual we are now going to decrease on the next row before increasing again…


Step 15. ch2, sl st into the centre of the 1st scale, ch2, sl st between the first and second scale, ch2, tr between the first and second scale, ch1, tr into the centre top of next scale, ch1, 2tr between the next scales. Your work should now look like the photo below.

Step 16. Repeat steps 10-12 again to create scales around the sets of 2 trebles.

Now you know how to increase and decrease you can use the steps above to make the crocodile scarf as follows (if you have followed all the steps above you will have just completed row 4).

I am using bamboo ribbon yarn that I’m not sure of the weight of and a 5mm hook which makes each scale ~2.5cm (1 inch) in width and height.

row 1 (tail): 1 scale for as long as you like (I have used a chain of 8 scales for my tail)

row 2: increase to 2 scales

row 3: increase to 3 scales

row 4: decrease to 2 scales

row 5: increase to 3 scales

row 6: increase to 4 scales

row 7: increase to 5 scales

row 8: decrease to 4 scales

Continue alternating between 4 and 5 scales to a row until the body of the scarf is as long as you want it. Then check back for instructions of how to complete the head once I get to that myself :)

See you later alligator….

UPDATE: The scarf is now finished. Instructions for the head and finishing touches can now be found here: Crocodile Scarf Head


32 thoughts on “Crocodile Scarf Tail

  1. OMG!!!!! It is soooo nice to have a lefty teaching crochet sts like this! Now for the 1st time I can see how this st is done and am ready to go – I just wish I could find some iridescent green yarn……:-)

  2. Hi, I would love it if you could explain how to create a rectangular scarf using this pattern?? I have tried viewing the videos and they all confuse me. If you could find the time to email me and possibly explain it to me that would be most helpful! the videos just confuse me and make me want to give up but I LOVE the stitch!

    • Hi, I’ve never actually made a square piece in this stitch – just the crocodile! hmmmm….. I think this is what you would do but there’re no guarantees as I’ve never tried it:

      row 1. chain a multiple of 4+1 (say 29 for the width of a scarf)
      row 2. chain 2, tr into 3rd chain from hook (last chain of previous row), *ch1, skip one stitch, tr, ch1, skip one stitch, 2tr*
      * repeat to end (you should end on 2tr in last chain)
      now continue as the tutorial shows for the midsection of the crocodile – alternately decreasing and increasing the number of scales.

      I hope that helps!

  3. I agree it is great to have a lefty show how to do patterns. I sit and watched my mom crochet and imitated her but it didn’t always meet with success. So I quit but now I am excited to get started again.

  4. When my Granny taught me to crochet sitting beside her knees beside the fire with the rain pouring down outside, never in my wildest dreams did I think that crochet could lead to this! Impressive!! Jane

  5. Reblogged this on My Meanderings and commented:
    Well, this is a stitch I haven’t done. Gonna have to learn it. First, I have to decide what I would use it for. I’m thinking a knit bodice with gator stitch skirting. Hmmmm

  6. What a bonus to learn from another leftie!! Sometimes these different stitches are just so hard to follow from a right-handed person. This is so easy to see now? Thank you!!

    • Quite a lot – the stitch uses it up very quickly. I can’t say exactly though because I was using recycled yarn from a Cardigan and then the finished thing was while away for a present before I had chance to weigh it.

  7. I took your advice about the youtube videos even though there’s not to many right handed videos I have managed to figure out the tail. But now I’m having a hard time going any further are the directions still given in both left and right hand cause I no longer see the right hand directions?

  8. Beautiful I love to crochet this fabulous patern in to a scarf Becose itt is winter here in RSA LOVE YOUR WORK OUTSTANDING.

  9. Although I’m ambidextrous I crochet and knit as a rightie ’cause I’m actually a rightie. It will be interesting to see if I can do this without having to think about it.

    To explain (and maybe there are others out there who have the same ‘problems’): when using a sewing needle, I am leftie and embroidery other types of stitching are usually by righties – they are going from right to left and I am going left to right, but with the same techniques as they use.

    • It hasn’t bothered me too much woth crochet – most patterns can easily be done either way. The only thing I’ve not managed to get right are cables. I should try again sometime.

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