How to Crochet Scrubbies with Hyperbolic Ruffles

Hyperbolic crochet is a form of crochet worked in the round to grow items exponentially so that they form organic ruffles. Although the term is derived from geometry and can sound a bit complex, the truth is that you can use the basic concept of hyperbolic crochet to easily created ruffled projects, such as scrubbies for the bath and kitchen.

History of Hyperbolic Crochet

The hyperbolic plane is a form in geometry created in such a way that it curves away from itself at every point. Mathematicians have worked to find tangible ways to make abstract ideas such as this into visual aids that are easier for non-mathematicians to grasp. In doing so, Daina Taimina hit upon crochet as the perfect medium for showcasing hyperbolic planes. In 2005, her ideas were utilized by sisters Margaret and Christine Wertheim in their creation of the Crochet Coral Reef project, an environmental awareness art project that has since traveled the globe. The shapes created in hyperbolic crochet were perfect for showcasing nature’s shapes as seen in coral reefs.

Growing Crochet Rounds Exponentially

There is a lot of specific math to create true hyperbolic crochet but what we can take away from it is that ruffled, organic shapes are created when we crochet multiple stitches into each stitch of the previous round, growing the work exponentially. Just how tightly ruffled the piece is depends in large part on how many stitches you crochet into each stitch around. For example, if you work 4 stitches into each stitch of the previous round, you will have a much tighter ruffle than if you work 2 stitches into each stitch around.

How to Crochet Ruffled Scrubbies

Here is a crochet pattern adapted to three different styles of ruffled crochet scrubbies. They are all based on rounds of double crochet stitches.

Basic Ruffled Crochet Scrubby

Use Red Heart Scrubby Cotton yarn and a size I crochet hook.

Round 1: Ch3, 9 dc into third ch from hook, sl st to close round. (Total 10 dc.)

Round 2: Ch 3 (counts as first dc, dc into same st, 2 dc in each st around, sl st to close. (Total 20 dc.)

Round 3: Repeat round 2. (Total 40 dc.)

Round 4: Repeat round 2. (Total 80 dc.) Although you may notice the ruffle start to form in round 3, it is really in round 4 that it begins to be obvious.

Round 5: Repeat round 2 (Total 160 dc.)

Round 6: Repeat round 2 (Total 320 dc.)

This makes a nice loosely ruffled round washcloth that is perfect for the bath. You can continue to grow it larger as desired by working 2 dc in each stitch around in every new round.

Ruffled Crochet Scrubby Variation 1

Use Red Heart Scrubby Cotton yarn and a size I crochet hook.

Round 1: Ch3, 9 dc into third ch from hook, sl st to close round. (Total 10 dc.)

Round 2: Ch 3 (counts as first dc, 2 dc into same st, 3 dc in each st around, sl st to close. (Total 30 dc.)

Round 3: Repeat round 2. (Total 90 dc.)

Round 4: Repeat round 2. (Total 270 dc.)

Round 5: Repeat round 2 (Total 540 dc.)

Ruffled Crochet Scrubby Variation 2

Use Red Heart Scrubby Cotton yarn and a size I crochet hook.

Round 1: Ch3, 9 dc into third ch from hook, sl st to close round. (Total 10 dc.)

Round 2: Ch 3 (counts as first dc, 3 dc into same st, 4 dc in each st around, sl st to close. (Total 40 dc.)

Round 3: Repeat round 2. (Total 160 dc.)

Round 4: Repeat round 2. (Total 640 dc.) Four rounds is sufficient for a tightly ruffled scrubby, perfect for kitchen use.

Sparkle Bath Pouf Scrubby

The Sparkle Bath Pouf Scrubby free crochet pattern by Gina Gallina uses a variation on the above scrubbies to create a terrific gift item.

Hyperbolic Crochet Flowers

The same steps used to create the scrubbies above can be used in this yarn or any other yarn to create textured 3-dimensional flowers. These look great if you change color in each round:

Add Ruffles to Other Projects

You can create ruffles on square dishcloths and other projects by working 1-3 rounds of hyperbolic crochet around the border of the project. For example, take this simple granny square scrubby:

Work one round of 3 dc in each stitch around for a beautiful ruffled edge:

Use the same concept to add ruffles all the way around skinny scarves, at the edge of pillow cases and anywhere else you find the texture interesting. Here are some additional patterns that utilize this technique:

Ruffled Wrap

Double Your Ruffles Scarf

Rah-Rah Ruffles Scarf 

Some Tips for Hyperbolic Crochet

Here are just a few more things that you might want to know about using this technique:

  • You can do this in rows. Although hyperbolic crochet is often worked in rounds, you can also work it in rows (as seen above in the Rah Rah Ruffles Scarf.)
  • You can use other basic stitches. Double crochet is frequently used for this technique but you can use the other basic stitches as well. You will get smaller, tighter ruffles if you work in shorter stitches (such as half double crochet). Play around with incorporating different stitch heights in the same project for unique results!
  • Choose your crochet hook wisely. The tighter you crochet, the more exaggerated your ruffle will be. If you want a very ruffled item, choose a crochet hook smaller than the one suggested on your yarn label. Remember, though, that you’re working multiple stitches into the same stitch so don’t go too much smaller or it might be hard on your hands.
  • Grow your shapes organically. Once you have the basics of ruffled crochet down, experiment with it! What happens when you work 2 stitches into each stitch for a few rounds then switch to four stitches and then back again? What happens if you don’t increase in a round? Get curious and play with your yarn.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.