Gauge Matters

MasonM's picture

Well, I learned a lesson about making sure ya have the right gauge. I've been working on an alpaca sweater vest and last night at a little short of the half way point noticed that I would run out of yarn before I finished.

I was sure I had enough yarn to do this. Upon trying the thing on and finding that it would probably fit a small elephant I measured the gauge and found my problem.

My swatch had been 6 stitches/inch but the vest was actually 5 stitches/inch. With the number of cast on stitches that was adding way too much to the diameter of the thing.

I frogged it last night and cast on what should be the correct number of stitches, plus a few extra for ease, and started all over again. Good thing this alpaca is enjoyable to work with. LOL

Measure twice, knit once!

Comments

albert's picture

I have noticed the same

I have noticed the same phenomenon. I will knit a swatch, sometimes the size of a hat in the round, get the gauge and then start knitting a sweater only to find that I am now getting a different gauge. It is maddening.

MasonM's picture

Yeah it does kinda make the

Yeah it does kinda make the whole swatch thing a bit pointless doesn't it?

Mason

Linux: because a PC is a terrible thing to waste

QueerJoe's picture

You described exactly the

You described exactly the reason I stopped doing gauge swatches. My gauge on a 4x4 inch square piece of fabric is almost always different than the gauge on a full size portion of a sweater.

Now I just knit 6 inches of the actual sweater using the recommended needle and gauge as my calculation and use that as my "gauge swatch." If it's off, I rip out and start again.

I'm riled up just thinking about it now.

TomH's picture

I just automatically assume

I just automatically assume I'm going to need smaller needles so I just drop down one size before knitting the project or swatch. Sometimes I have to drop down two needle sizes.

MasonM's picture

Hmm, well this is my first

Hmm, well this is my first sweater-like project and since my hats always came out right I just assumed (you know what that does) that my gauge would match my swatch. Live and learn.

Mason

Linux: because a PC is a terrible thing to waste

MasonM's picture

Sounds like a good idea to

Sounds like a good idea to me.

Mason

Linux: because a PC is a terrible thing to waste

MMario's picture

good thing it wasn't mohair!

good thing it wasn't mohair!

MMario - ambiguity is cultivated, it doesn't happen in a vacuum!
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MMarioKKnits/

MasonM's picture

LOL no doubt Mason Linux:

LOL no doubt

Mason

Linux: because a PC is a terrible thing to waste