One of the simplest, and most feminine details to knit up is a ruffle. The number of stitches that you begin with to create a ruffle is more than the number of stitches for the body of the piece. The following are two, simple ways to knit a ruffle at the bottom edge of a piece. For both methods, I used one size smaller needles than the body of the piece.
Method 1: (The top 2 swatches in the image above). Cast on 3 to 4 times the number of stitches required for the main body of the piece. For the swatch at the top, I casted on 3 times (90 stitches) the number of stitches desired (30 stitches), and for the middle swatch I casted on 4 times (120 stitches) for 30 stitches desired. Working in stockinette stitch, beginning with a purl row, knit the required length for the ruffle. Decrease row: To gather the stitches, if 3 times the number of stitches were cast on, k3tog (knit 3 together) across the row on the right side, and in this case 30 stitches remain. If you cast on 4 times the number of stitches, on right side k2tog (knit 2 together) across row, then p2tog (purl 2 together) on following row (30 stitches remain). Change needles and continue in pattern for body of the piece.
Method 2: This method creates a more scalloped edge. I casted on 4 times the desired number of stitches (the bottom sample in image above); for this sample 120 stitches (as for Method 1). Row 1 (RS): *k2, lift first stitch of these 2 stitches over second stitch and off the right needle; repeat from * across (60 stitches remain). Row 2: *p2tog, repeat from * across (30 stitches remain). Change needles and continue in pattern stitch for the body of the piece.
Voila! What could be easier.