I knit my scarves longwise and I cast on about 240 stitches. Then I can make it as wide as my boredom lets me. I hate to start on the narrow end cause by the time it is two feet long I am so tired of it. This other way works great for me. The ones I make are all donated to breast cancer survivors so the lengthwise and a lace pattern work perfect for me. This makes a scarf that goes from hip joint to hip joint and that seems to be the prefered length for what I do.