In this week’s video, I’ll show you how to turn a 2D barcode into a knitted scarf! This is a fun way to get information from a garment into an electronic device, such as a cell phone equipped with a barcode-scanning camera. Anyone who takes a picture of my scarf can decode the message. I used Photoshop to modify the QR code I got from Kaywa (whose barcode scarf inspired me to make my own!) into a usable knitting pattern, but you could easily use graph paper instead. I programmed the pattern into my computerized knitting machine, a Brother KH 930. If you know how to do stranded knitting (learn how here), you can knit this without a machine – just use really small needles! As a side note, a friend and I are working on an interface to download patterns directly from the computer to the knitting machine, instead of having to sit there and input every colored stitch. We’ll keep you posted!

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Becky Stern

Becky Stern

Becky Stern ( is a DIY guru and director of wearable electronics at Adafruit. She publishes a new project video every week and hosts a live show on YouTube. Formerly Becky was Senior Video Producer for MAKE. Becky lives in Brooklyn, NY and belongs to art groups Free Art & Technology (“release early, often, and with rap music”) and Madagascar Institute (“fear is never boring”).

  • renehermi

    Hi, whats happened with the plan to download the qr code directly to the stitch machine? :)