“Like a blanket to wear around your neck,” we agreed. I’d been chatting with Melissa, who owns Seaside Yarns–the lovely little yarn shop here in Juneau. We are both crocheters from childhood and we have strong associations with granny squares and the popular zigzag patterns of the 1970s. My house has my grandmother’s scrap blankets on various beds and couches. We reach for them when we’re chilly or just need to feel comforted.

Missy and I wanted to have a fall project that would be soft and meditative, comforting. I had seen someone crocheting a ripple-stitch baby blanket the other day out of fingering weight baby yarn and that gave me the idea for a scarf. We settled on sock yarn–fine, washable, generous put up. And we picked a simple two-color stripe. It was serendipity that Missy had just gotten a new sock yarn into the shop–“Nordly’s Superwash” from Viking of Norway is a single-ply 75% wool, 25% nylon yarn with long color repeats that just begged to be turned into a stripy, ripply scarf.

Ripple yarn

So, join us, if you will, in rippling. You can use any yarn and hook you like. I’m using a US size F.

This is a one-row pattern that takes no time to memorize, so you’ll be rippling meditatively as you contemplate the color changes in your scarf or the ones out the window. Or, like me, you can listen to a book “on tape.” Mine is yet another vampire novel that I’m listening to via audio-book (A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness,[ref]It was with this book that I discovered Amazon, who owns now has the option of purchasing a bundled audio and kindle version of certain books, you can start reading, listen a bit, then go back to reading and your location is sync’d. The weird thing is, it’s cheaper to buy the kindle edition first and then add “voice narration,” than it is to buy the audiobook and subsequently add the kindle version.[/ref] thank you, Marly Bird for the recommendation).

sc-bl = single crochet in the back loop of the stitch. This makes the yummy, scrunchy ribbed texture of this scarf that compliments the undulations of the ripple.
shell = 3 sc-bl, or 3 sc in the foundation row, in the stitch indicated. After the foundation row, the shells will always be worked in the center stitch of the shell from the row below.

The pattern is adapted from Jan Eaton’s wonderful resource 200 Ripple Stitch Patterns. It’s a multiple of 11 stitches +10. You can make yours as narrow or as wide as you like. I began with a chain of 54, (i.e. 44 +10)

How to Ripple:

Foundation Row:  sc in 2nd ch from hook, and each of next 3 ch, *[shell in next ch, sc in next 4 ch, sk 2 ch, sc in ea of next 4 ch.] Repeat from * to last 5 ch, shell in next ch, sc in next 4 ch, turn.

Pattern Row: Ch 1. Skip 1st sc, sc-bl in the next 4 stitches *[shell in next st, sc-bl in next 4 sts, sk 2 sts, sc-bl in next 4 sts.] Repeat from * to last 6 sts, shell in next st, sc-bl in next 3 sts, skip 1 st, sc in both loops of final st, turn.

Repeat the pattern row to grow your scarf. Change colors every two rows carrying the unused color not too snugly up one side of the scarf. [ref] A little note about changing colors: when you reach the end of the second row of a color finish the final stitch by pulling up the last loop with the new color. That way your turning chain will be in the new color.[/ref]

Work the ripple, as Elizabeth Zimmerman might say, “until you can’t stand it any longer,” or until the scarf is generous enough to make several warm wraps around your neck or until you run out of yarn. I picked one multi-colored stripe and one semi-solid, and I’m already enjoying watching the shifts in color and the variations of contrast happening with my scarf. Yes, I’m easily entertained. Will we decide to add an edging or a fringe? Only time will tell. Let me know in the comments if you decide to join our ripple-along.

Rippling Along