How to Knit With Ruffle Yarn

    CRAFTS CLASSES
    TO INSPIRE CREATIVITY
    by Cynthia Myers

    About the Author

    Cynthia Myers is the author of numerous novels and her nonfiction work has appeared in publications ranging from "Historic Traveler" to "Texas Highways" to "Medical Practice Management." She has a degree in economics from Sam Houston State University.

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    The newest novelty yarn to hit your local yarn store is ruffle yarn. As the name implies, ruffle yarn falls into graceful ruffles when you knit. Primarily used for scarves, ruffle yarn comes in a variety of colors and patterns. Some of the yarns form narrow ruffles, while others have wider, lacier ruffles. Working with the yarn takes a little practice, but once you're mastered the technique, you can produce lovely scarves in a few hours.

    Choosing the Yarn

    Different brands of ruffle yarn produce different looks. Visit your local yarn store and ask to see pictures or samples of scarves knitted with the various yarns. Choose the yarn that produces the look you want. The yarns work well on their own, or you can mix another color or ruffle yarn or a delicate eyelash yarn for different looks.

    Needles

    You can use straight or circular knitting needles -- whatever you would normally use to produce a scarf. You'll be working back and forth with the yarn. Choose a medium-gauge needle. Most ruffle yarn has fairly large holes for threading onto your needle, so the yarn would easily slip off a small gauge, but the holes won't accommodate very large needles. Size 7 to 9 will work well for most projects.

    Getting Started

    Ruffle yarn is sold in hanks, so first you'll need to unwrap the yarn and wind it into a ball. If you skip this step, you'll end up with a tangled mess. Unfold the ruffle so that it lies flat. You'll see a row of holes along one side. Thread your needle back and forth through these holes to cast on your stitches. Eight to ten stitches wide is sufficient for a scarf. For the best ruffle effect, thread the needle through every other stitch.

    Knitting the Yarn

    Experiment with knitting into every hole on the yarn or knitting every other or even every third hole. Skipping holes produces a wider ruffle. Work slowly, taking care not to skip stitches on your needle. Stick to knit stitches only -- anything else is lost in the thick ruffles. Smooth the yarn from time to time as you knit to keep the ruffles from twisting. One ball of ruffle yarn is enough to make one 4- to 5-foot-long scarf. When you near the end of the yarn, cast off stitches as you normally would. Fluff the ruffles until you achieve the look you want.