Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Knit The Potato Chip Scarf

I am writing a blog page on the potato chip scarf. I don't know where this scarf pattern originated, but it was given to me on an index card at one of the knit groups. There were eight rows for the pattern and the person that gave it to me was wondering why it was not working. I had no picture so I started making the scarf. I found out that the eighth row was the problem. After deleting that row the scarf evolved into a nice long row of ruffles. Because several in the group were making this scarf and there was this mystery and questions about it, I thought I would break it down so that others can also make it without any problems.



So let's dissect this pattern.

First and foremost, it is important to understand your pattern. This pattern uses short rows. What are short rows? They are working a portion of the row, then turning and working again those same stitches for the next row. This is a great pattern to learn about short rows, because there is a lot of practice in working this scarf up.

You have four numbers to work the short rows in this pattern. They are 20, 8, 6, and 4. The 20 are the total number that you start with as well as repeat after working the short rows of the 8, 6, and 4. It will get clearer as you start the scarf.

Pattern:

For my sample, I used #8 needles and worsted weight yarn. My scarf length is 32". For your scarf you can go by the needle size on your yarn label or you can play with yarn and needles to see what affect you get. Bottom line is, it depends on the weight of the yarn and the look you want when you complete the scarf as to the needle size. Since it is a scarf a gauge count is not necessary. This is a great project to play with different yarns to see what you get.

Note: You will not see the potato chips curl until you have done at least 3 inches or 35 rows, depending upon what yarn and needle size you are using. This was the one thing that confused people. They would start the scarf; take it out, start over looking for the curl. Just continue not looking for the curl right away. Your piece will not look the same as if you were working straight rows because you are working short rows.

Cast on 20 stitches

Row 1: Knit 20 stitches, turn

Row 2: Knit 8 sts, turn
(side note: you are knitting each row so when you turn, the yarn should be in the back as it is when you are knitting)

Row 3: Knit 8 sts, turn

Row 4: Knit 6 sts, turn

Row 5: Knit 6 sts, turn

Row 6: Knit 4 sts, turn

Row 7: Knit 4 sts, turn

Repeat rows 1-7 for the length you want.

As you can see, each number except for the foundation row of 20 is worked twice. This is the flow of short rows.

This completes seven rows of one side.



Now you have to get to the other side to work seven rows on that side. Making it clearer, I will call it the right and the left side. You are working back and forth completing seven rows on the right side then working across all stitches (row one) to get to the left side to do the same thing. This creates the ruffles.



Continuing with the pattern of rows 1 - 7. You are repeating all rows to get the mirror affect for both sides.

Let's go back to the beginning. When you get done with the 7 rows on each side, you will see the beginnings of what will look like two potato chips. Can you see them? Well, just continue and it will start to become noticeable.

Another problem is when you might have to put your work down and pick it up, which row did you leave off on. The best thing is to write it down before you put it down. But sometimes you don't have time to do that.

The illustration below shows that there is an indentation at each place when you work the three repeats (8, 6, and 4). Because you are working in short rows it is almost a small hole that is there since that one stitch is a tad bit higher because you are not working across the whole row.



Continue with the pattern. Put it around your neck to see how long you would like it. There is no specific length. This is your project so create it as long or as short as you would like. When you get to the length you would like, bind off across all stitches. Believe it or not, when you bind off the scarf it will curl the same as when you started, showing two potato chips.



Try this scarf. It is great as an accent to what you are wearing and you can make it as long as you want, try different yarns, and in any color. Great for gift giving too.

Have fun and don't be intimidated by this. If you have any questions, please post a comment and I will answer. I'd love to know how your scarf came out.

49 comments:

  1. Very helpful- Thank you!!!

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  2. I have been going crazy with this scarf. I am so happy to have found this and I am now trying again! THANKS!!!

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  3. Love these directions with photos. Thanks!

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  4. Do have a question--since this will be a gift I need help in deciding what the final lenth should be. What seems to be the most common length?

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  5. I have started this and it goes rather quickly. I think I am following it as written but it does not curl and there is that "V" where I started. Any suggestions or am I just doing it all wrong.

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  6. A friend gave me this pattern and novice that I am, I simply couldn't picture it. Thanks much for the clear and concise instructions and the great pictures! Now I'm off and knitting!

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  7. Thank you for your wonderful directions for this scarf. I prefer this pattern so much more than the other patterns I have seen for "potato chip" scarf. Am I right in assuming that you end the scarf with Row 1 (20 sts) and then the bind off?

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  8. This is so much fun to knit. Just started it and can't wait to see how it comes out. Thanks so much for the details..they help a beginner!

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  9. You don't mention how many ounces or skeins of worsted yarn would be needed to make a scarf. Please help, I can't wait to try it.

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  10. Thank you for the very clear instructions. I have a friend who was knitting one the other day and I was intrigued

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  11. Thank you for this pattern. I just started working on this and I have a "V" at the bottom. Is this right. It did not loo9k like there was a "V" on the bottom of the one pictured. Thanks for your help. I love this scarf.

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  12. Thank you so so much for the clear instruction. I have frogged this scarf twice because it didn't look right. So now, I will start again.

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  13. i have a pattern i am currently knitting and the directions are the same but after the last short row of 4 i knit back 20 to get to the other side. it looks more twirly.

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  14. this may help anonymous who wrote on Nov 29, 2010

    I have started this and it goes rather quickly. I think I am following it as written but it does not curl and there is that "V" where I started. Any suggestions or am I just doing it all wrong.
    if after every 4 row you knit back 20 and turn, you will have a more twirly scarf!!

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  15. Hello to all. I'm sorry that I missed so many comments prior to now. I don't go back to eariler posts but every once in a while. Now I see I need to check more often. There is always something to learn. Now to this scarf. I'm so glad that everyone is enjoying making a scarf I didn't create but just wanted to make clearer with the directions. A scarf can be as long as you would like it to be. The one I made was approx. 40" long. It depends upon how you want to wear it. I wear it as an accent piece so I don't want it to be too long. As for the curl, you need to do at least 3" before you see the shape. And yes you have a "V" start and end. You can knit this in any weight of yarn just know that the width and length will be different. Play with the scarf because it is a fun pattern. I hope this helped.

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  16. I forgot about the question regarding how much yarn. It doesn't take a whole skein of yarn. I used Caron Simply Soft yarn. I don't remember how much of it I used. But the Caron Simply Soft skein has 366 yards so that is a lot of yardage. Other skeins have less. So it does depend upon the yarn. I know this is not the best answer for you but if you get one skein of the Caron then you can't go wrong. Maybe someone else out there can comment on this.

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    1. As to the question about yarn quantity -- I just finished my first (and I say FIRST because I WILL be making more of these) Potato Chip Scarf using your perfect directions, and I wanted to add my info so that it might help other knitters. I used Lion Brand Homespun Yarn #320 Regency color -- it's a very soft, kind of curly yarn that is wonderful for winter accessories. I used almost exactly one full skein, and this brand's skein is 6 oz/170 g, and 185 yds/169 M. There was literally less than a handful of yarn left, and it's a perfect finished length (after knitting the final row of 20 stitches) of 42" to 46" (approx., point to point). This length and bulkiness is perfect for a "hung around the neck" accessory, not tied in any way, with 3-4 distinct sets of large ruffles on each side (more if twisted tighter). Hope this helps! It's a total winner (and I'm a relative "newbie" to knitting -- so ANYONE can do it successfully!)!

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  17. Hi, about the holes.... that can be remedied by doing a wrap and turn after each short row.
    Look up Helix Scarf at knittingdaily.com. The instructions are easy to follow.
    Most finished scarves have been knit with handspun yarn... with a "drape".

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  18. As a beginner, I am really pleased....this scarf is sooo much easier than it looks

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  19. Was step 8 k 2 turn k 2?
    I am so glad that you mentioned it had to have 3 inches or 35 rows. Now that I have enough length it is curling. I am using a skein of sock wt variegated with #3 needles.

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  20. I love to knit and ifound this and i am trying now just hope it turns out like yours or close

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  21. I started knitting the potato chip stitch and it looks like a bowtie right now, but i have the feeling that when i get to the end that i will love it.

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  22. Thanks for the photos. I started this, based on directions from another site, but was sure I had done something wrong, because it wasn't curling. Your photos are encouraging me that I am not doing it wrong. Thanks so much! I'll keep knitting!

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  23. I absolutely love the directions you have given on here. We did this pattern in a knit group for holiday charity. I just wanted to let you know that we did a long tail cast on and left a long tail when we bound off. We then used those tails to sew the V together to make a round shape on each end. When we did this they turned into gorgeous spirals. Try it and see if you like it. If you do this scarf with oversized needles and super chunky yarn it creates an amazing collar scarf you can wear around the top of your coat...all you need is a chopstick to hold it together. You can do it out of one skein ( that let's you buy the luxury yarn and not break the bank!)

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  24. I am still confused with the turning your work. Can you post a picture or more of how to turn the work, etc....Thanks so much. I knitted several rows and it didn't look right so I took it apart and started over 3 times now. Help!

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  25. I also have started this scarf 3 times before I read your posts. This is a fun scarf to make & I ALWAYS stopped by finishing the 7th row so I always know where to begin.
    Thank you so much for your help!!

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  26. I have a question. I wanted to make this scarf for a child. I thought about starting with 12-14 stitches for the first row. I am not sure of the other rows. Can you help?
    Thanks!!

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  27. These are the best directions ever!! You can teach me to knit anything! Thanks and I look forward to learning your next project.
    Tina

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  28. a friend from work gave me this pattern. I love it. I would like to know how much yarn I need as I have lots of leftovers.

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  29. What if you want to start with an oblong scarf and add the curl on both sides? Has anyone done this or can anyone figure out how to do this?

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  30. Thank you so. much. This is the best pattern ever! I just found this and pulled out my knitting needles for the first time in years! Thanks!

    Grace Ann

    WouldYouLikeYarnWithThat.blogspot.com

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  31. Now I get it!!! concise instructions, Thanks a bunch

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  32. Could someone show me how to start the 20 stitches.

    Rita Lehr at ritalehr@gmail.com

    Thank you. Rita

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  33. I have made 4 of these and have 3 more started. Great project and fun gift. I have tried thin and worsted weight. size 10 to 13 needles. all a great outcome. thanks for this pattern.

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  34. I have had to take it out several times lol like u said mark it down when you put it down but I am getting there thanks for the pic. and derictions happy Knitting everyone

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  35. When I was working on my scarf I kept picking up additional stitches to the original casted on stitches of 20. What would cause that? I have taken it out several times. I get everything about the short rows, but I can't figure out what is causing this.

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    1. Hi, just found this pattern and was reviewing comments. Make sure you are brining your yarn to back of work on 8, 6, and 4 turns not over needle. Hope this helps.

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    2. As a novice knitter this was happening to me as well. I discovered I needed to be careful when pushing my needle up through the stitch (on left needle) and only grab the threads of yarn for that stitch only! I thought I was being careful but I wasn't. After I caught on to what was happening, I quit adding on unwanted stitches to my relief and was able to complete the scarf!!

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  36. How do you bind off the scarf?

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  37. This is such a great pattern! A bunch of us are making them at work. Your directions are perfect!

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  38. Thank you so much for explaining this pattern in such detail. I try to visualize each project before actually starting it. Other patterns talked about short rows but I could not understand what they meant. Your description along with the pictures explained it perfectly. Now I can start my project!

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  39. Boa tarde,
    gostaria de saber se poderia nos ensinar a fazer cachecol no ponto short row. Obrigada. Muito lindo os seus trabalhos. Deus abençoe.
    Mabel

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  40. I would like to make this scarf thicker, to do this would I be able to just double the pattern or would that make me lose the ruffle effect? Thanks!

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  41. A friend of mine knitted me one of these scarves and I love, love, love it! She said she would show me how to make one, but I can't wait. I looked on Youtube to see how it's done and try to understand the terminology as well as read your instructions. I've never made one, but I'm very determined to do this and hope my potato chip scarf turns out beautiful! I'll let you know how it turns out! Thanks a million!!! : )

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  42. I like this scarf, but would absolutely love it, if it were a bit wider...any thoughts on whether I could get the same effect by using more stitches than 20?...possible to double? Thanks for your explanations, I am self taught from books, and I so appreciate the pictures and explanations.

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  43. Thank you so much for the detailed instructions and photos! I plan to try this tomorrow when I'm off from work :)

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  44. I knit a scarf according to your instructions which I thought were very good. I have posted a picture on Ravelry but I couldn't post your web address so I just put in your name Miss Craft Diva. I don't think people will find this pattern tho. Advise me how I can get people to find you.

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  45. Boa noite e muito obrigada por repassar essa dica muito preciosa, fiquei muito grata, um grande abraço. Téka

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  46. very easy to do,love this pattern

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