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Tips and Tricks Of The Round Ripple Afghan

Ending the Mystery

all afghans here were made using the same pattern

Virtues of the Round Ripple Afghan.
Unique shape as traditional afghans have been
rectangular or square
No corners to drag on the floor and probably uses less yarn 
Can be folded and worn like a shawl
Never have to worry about full coverage
 Rapid start, the center uses up those small balls of yarn
Excellent for stash busting and encouraging 
for those who get bored with large projects
Can be made any size, any yarn, any hook size  
Quit anytime you want, or add on when you have extra yarn. 
It starts out as a coaster, next a hot pad, it grows to a table center, then that cute baby blanket, which increases to becomes a little throw, which expands to an afghan, then explodes into a bed cover. 
What's not to like ?

     The pattern I use for my basic Round Ripple Star afghan pattern is my own which I worked out from a picture of a round ripple rug that I saw in a magazine over 40 years ago. That is how long I have been making this style afghan.
     I had no written pattern as it is so simple I committed it to memory years ago. I have been asked for it so many times I have decided to write mine out but you may use any round ripple pattern you choose. At this time there are many round ripple afghan patterns online that range from 5 to 24 points. Some are free some are not. Free or not from what I can see, the basic working structure is the same on all round ripple afghan patterns.  My personal preference is 12 points so any reference from here forward gives reference to a 12 point "star" afghan.
     The pattern increases in the points and decreases at the bottom or valley of same. The stitch format is the same as for the basic side to side ripple and any stitch I have used on the rows for side to side ripple I have used on the rounds for the round ripple.  Unlike the side to side ripple where the stitch count remains fixed throughout the length, the round ripple increases its stitch count on designated rounds.  Also unlike the side to side ripple which is turned at the end of each row, when working in rounds, I always work this pattern face up without turning.
     The round ripple afghan can be made with any weight yarn and any size hook and can become any size you want.  When choosing yarn weight be advised, on a 12 point round ripple the number of stitches grows by 24 stitches on every increase round. The weight or thickness of the yarn will determine how many rounds are needed to accomplish the desired diameter of the afghan.  As you get to the outside rounds it can get tedious but usually by that time you are excited enough about it to dig up enough determination to finish it. However you can stop at the end of any increase shell round and call it large enough.
     This style afghan is a fabulous stash buster because very small amounts can be used in the center saving larger amounts for the outside rows. I always measure point to point and the afghan displayed on the pattern page is about 65 inches. I have made star afghans with diameters ranging from 36 inches up to 76 inches in diameter.  I use about four 7 oz skeins of Red Heart Super Saver worsted weight yarn to make a personal size afghan. A little more perhaps if you want an elaborate border. If making a "stash buster" I weigh out about 30 to 34 oz of worsted weight yarn in complementing colors arranging the smallest amounts for the center. I reserve the largest amount to be used as the base color and "work in" a base color row every so often to pull it all together. I do not mix different yarn weights in the same afghan unless it is trim attached later. I only use yarn that can be machine washed and dried as I find it more practical for active families.
     In my basic pattern I always refer to the 2 ch space of a shell as the point.  I always refer to the decrease stitches between points as the valley.  There is always a ch 2 space at the points and a skip two stitches at the center of the valley.   Always skip the last stitch of the previous point and the first stitch of the next point.

     I detest the "hole" and ridge left by "chain loop starts" so I always use the "magic circle." often with a double wrap for strength.  There are many tutorials for the magic circle or loop on the web and You-tube.
     Never, ever clip the yarn tail from the magic circle, it WILL come undone.  Consider if you cut it, all that is holding your stitches is the microscopic amount of yarn the length of the center of the circle, which is less than 1/4 inch.  Always work in your yarn tails.  Heartbreaking when something you spent hours making comes undone in mere minutes.

     I  also detest the "joining line" or what I call the line of "demarcation" and on each new round I only chain 2 not 3 to help hide the joining line.  When adding a new color I always rotate my piece clockwise one point to the left of the last joining to help disguise an obvious joining line.
     Always join new colors in the first working stitch after the valley between points to maintain the integrity of the points.

     Always end an afghan on an increase shell round to keep the points crisp.

     This style afghan should lay flat, that is why I believe following the basic pattern sequence of 1 even round followed by 2 increase rounds was so important.  However I soon found out that as the round ripple grows in size there comes a point where the normal increases don’t seem to be enough and the points tend to curl back toward the center.
     This upset me as I admit I have what I call OCD or  (Obsessive Crochet Disorder).  At first I tried to fix it by adding more chains in the point.  This actually made it worse.  I found the only way to fix it is to actually break the pattern sequence and add more increase rounds.  Instead of working  1 even round followed by just 2 increase rounds, I worked 3 increase rounds, then went back to the pattern sequence.  Now, every time I notice the hint of a curl I work an extra increase round, then lay it flat, and hand smooth out to be sure is is flat.
     In the same arena there are those who will find that even when they are exactly following the pattern there is a bit of fullness.  To prevent fullness from accumulating, break the pattern sequence again.  Work one even round followed by just one (1) increase rounds, then go back to the pattern.  Nobody is going to notice.

     There are no crochet police.  Nobody is going to be counting your points to see if you followed pattern sequence or if you added an extra increase, or if you skipped one.  I wrote my posted pattern over 40 + years ago and I have never changed it.  It works for many but everyone has their own style, tension, different yarn, different hook….so I advise from my personal experience.

      While it is small I count the stitches every second or third round. Once each point gets to about 15 stitches each side (or 30 stitches per point) I count the stitches point by individual point to make sure all points have the same number of stitches.  Counting each point is less confusing than trying to count the entire round.  I count each side of the finished point to make sure they are the same, after I get to the bottom between points.  The reason for counting all point on each round is because uneven points quickly lean to one side and it is hard to determine where it started.  Since, on larger projects, you can end up with several hundred stitches on the last rounds if you need to rip it out you will rue the decision not to count.  One thing I learned the hard way is, if you don't take the time to do it right, you sure don't have time to do it over.
     Please refer to the page "My Basic Round Ripple Afghan Pattern" for the pattern of  how I make my round ripple star afghans.  There is only one basic structure for this type afghan so I lay no claim to the basic pattern itself. I claim only my ideas for my variations thereof.   What makes each afghan unique is the personal choice of colors and stitches used to create each.  Therefore, you can adapt my patterns as a base to create your chosen round ripple design.


How To Fold A Round Afghan

1.  Fold in half
2.  Fold left side over 1/3
3.  Fold right side over left, afghan is now in thirds
4. Fold center over bottom
5. View of other side.

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  1. Thank you for the tips, I've always kept myself away from afghans because I can get bored easily by long and repetitious proyects but I love the 12 star afghan, I just can't keep imagining how cozy and warm we would be under it... so I've decided I want to make one... I have not decided the colors scheme yet and was thinking of using my stash.. but what you say about using same kind of yarn is important.. and it should be able to go in the washing machine as often as it needs..
    Thanks again for sharing of your experience.

  2. I noticed an error in the instructions of this afghan. Before and after round 7, the instructions say to " Sl st into next st". At the beginning of round 7, these instructions were omitted. It almost tripped me up. I went ahead and did the above instruction at the beginning of round 7.
    I have been crocheting for many years, and this error almost got me! Could you please correct the pattern instructions so that others who want to make this pattern don't get confused and end up making a mistake on their project?
    Thank you very much!

    1. Tanya. Doris wrote her pattern in a manner that makes sense to her (and to me) and not unexpectedly some people have trouble following. I would suggest that you read through each line and add information from Doris' tips. Type her information in a manner that makes sense to you so you may enjoy her design, which she provided free of charge. Please don't ask the designer to re-write her pattern. I would take that as an insult. Had you paid for the pattern you could expect the format to be what is considered 'the norm'. I hope you used this pattern and made a beautiful afghan. : )

  3. thank you for this pattern, I made a lot of 5 point and 8 poimt, cant wait to try yours. it is beautiful.

    1. You are welcome. 12 point takes a bit longer but I think it is worth it. I have done 8 point but have never done 5 point.

  4. I am on round 15 of Forever Spring. I've done it 4 times because round 16 doesn't seem to be right?

    1. Once you go though the center basic setup of the round ripple afghan, and have your points established, the pattern is only a 3 round repeat, 1 round with even shells in the point followed by two rounds with increase shells in the points. The rounds with the increase shells keep it expanding while the round with the even shell is to keep it flat instead of starting to ruffle. If you have read the tips on the round ripple afghan I suggest after you complete a round, count it point by individual point instead of trying to count the whole round as one.
      If you count the points now, you will know which point is missing a stitch. Concentrate on that one point, check each round from the first row to row 15/16 and see if the correct number of stitches are in each point. If the point stitches are correct, look for a skipped stitch or two stitches accidentally joined into one.
      If you are still having a problem contact me. Use the email app in the right sidebar rather than the comments. That way we can talk in depth.

  5. I want to thank you. I tried to start these patterns with no clue on how to do these. Seen your explainations and cant stop doing them. Thank you.

    1. I must admit this is one of my favorite patterns to make. I lost count of how many I have made years ago. For as popular as they are I am always surprised when someone says they have never seen one before. I like to make them (for all of the reasons I have already listed) and I have never had anybody tell me they didn't like them. The hardest part is trying to keep up with the demand. I'm so happy you are having fun with it.
      Thanks for your comment. Dorie

  6. Is there a pattern for a scalloped round ripple instead of a pointed one?

    1. Great question and the idea intrigues me. I have never seen one, I believe it is very possible that there is one somewhere or at least there should be. So already I feel the idea growing. Perhaps you could design one yourself. I feel sure it would start round like a doily and grow from there. If you design one I would love to see it. If I design one I will post it however it probably will not be until after the first of the year. This is my busy season.

  7. Creative analysis - I learned a lot from the points - Does anyone know if my company might be able to access a blank Print PDF Application copy to fill in ?

    1. I am not sure what your request is ? Adobe Reader is a free application that can be downloaded from their web site and most office programs will allow you to export your self written text files as Adobe Reader or PDF files.
      This free web site http://www.printfriendly.com/ will allow you to print most web pages or save them as PDF files

      Thank you for asking. Dorie