Last week we posted the most adorable crochet tutu pattern, which uses the new ruffle-type yarns. Ruffle yarns are great for fast projects, and you know how much The Animator's Wife loves fast projects with a toddler in the house.
Ruffle yarns actually come as a tape that looks like this.
While you can crochet it just like that and use it as a super chunky yarn, it's more fun to spread the tape out so you can make ruffles.
See how it is actually made from a grid with a nice edge on the bottom? Here's how to use it to make ruffles.
1. With the edge on the bottom, fold the end of the yarn under by about 1-2 inches.
2. Insert the hook (a size J is recommended) in the first square in the upper right corner, as if you were going to make a regular crochet stitch.
3.Skip 1-2 squares (the more squares you skip, the more ruffly your project will be), and grab the top of the next square with the hook.
4.Now pull your hook through the loops on the hook just as if you were making a chain stitch. And guess what? You've just made a chain stitch!
5. Repeat steps 2-4 for each chain stitch you want to make. As you make them, you will see that each stitch can be viewed from the top edge just like with regular yarn. See the "V"s made by the chain stitches?
6. Once your chain is as long as you'd like, you can chain and turn just as in any crochet project.
7. To work a single crochet, this time your hook will be inserted into the "V" of the chain stitch below. Then you will skip the 1-3 squares of the yarn before yarning over and finishing the stitch as usual.
This is how it looks after one row of single crochet. It does twist on itself, but the more rows you work, the flatter it will lie, with the ruffles springing out from the front and back.
8. To "finish" the project, insert the hook into the last stitch and grab the whole end of the yarn.
9. Pull the end through and tighten it just like any other project. And you're done!
I know I've used the phrase "just like any other project" a lot in this tutorial, but it really is just like any other crochet project! Once you wrap your head around working across a grid instead of across a length of yarn, you'll find that working with ruffle yarn is fast and easy.