Easy Solutions to Deal With Fraying
To prevent the fringe on your projects from unraveling, you can either buy special anti-fraying products at your favorite crafts store or just simply use one of the many household products already available in your home for a nifty workarounds.
If you’re going for the easiest approach, all you have to do is simply cover the tip of the yarn with the sealant of your choice. There are many products designed for this purpose. Just make sure to let the solution dry over a scrap piece of fabric or paper towel, so you don’t have a lot of mess to clean up after.
You can also have your lighter go over the end of the yarn to slightly burn and melt the fibers together. This technique, however, only works with synthetic yarns, and is especially useful for items you don’t intend to wear such as rugs or decorative tapestries. That’s because burning your yarn slightly will leave a hard nub on the end, which may not be suitable for handmade goods you intend to wear such as scarves and cowls.
For items made of 100% wool or mohair, you can rub the ends vigorously with your fingers while using warm water and a tiny dab of soap. This will cause the frayed yarn to shrink and tighten, therefore avoiding the problem of unraveling.
Another alternative you can try is to wrap the tip of the yarn in a piece of transparent tape. While this is not a permanent fix, it is great for handmade items you have made that are intended for one-time use only. This approach only works, as well, on items that you don’t intend to wash and dry.
Tips to Avoid Fraying in the First Place
Truth is – the best way to prevent fraying is to avoid it in the first place. You can start by being more thorough while you crochet; as this can really go a long way in helping you avoid the problem of fraying ends.
When you are changing yarn colors halfway through your project, you can tie a knot close to the end of each fringe and weave the knot within the actual item itself to hide it. While it will take a lot of work to do this, it will be worth the effort to prevent your handmade beauties from unraveling. If you are working on a multi-striped item, you can also thread the yarn through the stitches with a plastic needle to hide and protect it from unraveling.
If you want to do a basic weave-in, you can start by threading the tail of your yarn through a tapestry needle. Next, insert the needle back into your crocheted item by weaving it underneath the stitches to hide the yarn. It is best to turn the item over, as you’re doing this to be certain the needle is hidden on the other side of the work as well. Then, pull the needle carefully so you can also pull the yarn all the way through. After which, you can weave the yarn back to he other direction, all while skipping the first stitch so you can properly secure it. Many crochet enthusiasts do this process thrice, but twice should do the trick to ensure your yarn ends won’t unravel.
You should also never do your fringe by cutting, as that would only 100% make the crochet unravel over time. Even if that is a great way to make fringe on woven fabric, it will certainly frustrate you as it starts to detangle on its own. Instead, make fringe by looping lengths of yarn usually in groups of 3’s or 4’s through the bottom and the top edge. You can also try working with different brands of yarn to select which one has the greatest resistance to fraying. Unfortunately, not all yarns are made equal, so there are certainly brands out there that claim to have more lasting power than others.
Twisted fringe is another very common technique that most crochet enthusiasts use to get the fringe look without having to deal with the annoying fraying. All you have to do is take two groups of fringe threads and twist them in the same direction. Next, allow them to twist upon themselves in the opposite direction. Once that’s all set, you can secure the twist by tying an overhand knot at the bottom.
Lastly, if you ultimately decide that the fringe is not worth the hassle at all, you can always sew a hem. You can do this either with a machine or by hand. Machine is the most efficient of course, but doing it by hand wouldn’t hurt either. Regardless of how you plan to do it, you can simply sew a line of stitching across the end of the piece to secure the weft. Then just cut off the excess fringe, and fold and hem as usual.
In the end, if you don’t want to lose hours of crochet work because of an unfortunate unraveling in the ends, it is best to exercise caution as you create your masterpieces. There are many techniques and even household items you can use to not only deal with the issue at hand (and prevent it from getting worse), but also to avoid it altogether. The key thing to note is that while aesthetics can be very important, function still needs to reign supreme. This means avoiding fringe is you have to do, if that means being able to secure the lifespan of your homemade masterpieces for much longer.