Saturday, 18 February 2012

Gauge Swatches.

The Swatch...Scary!
 The Gauge Swatch Saga

I would love to make a garment that actually fits someone! But I'm a bit intimidated by the whole thing...

Above you see a swatch that I've been working on for a waistcoat that I am making for Marmee, I hinted about it in my last post. It's the second attempt at getting gauge and still not bang on. Grrr... I think it's the closest I can get. Check out the Ravelry details to see more about the pattern I'm using.

So here's some numbers:
The pattern specifies a gauge of:

21stitches x 28rows is 4”x4” with 4mm needles.

The closest to that I can get is 22sts x 24rows to 4”x4” with 5mm needles (the swatch pictured above).

So, in my head it means that the waistcoat will be a little bit wider and a bit shorter than the measurements of the pattern because the number of stitches is more and the number of rows is less than the pattern requires per 4" = my first mistake!!

In fact, it means that 21sts (pattern gauge) is a little bit less than 4" in my swatch. So the waistcoat will be a little bit narrower. And 28 rows (pattern gauge) measures more than 4" in my swatch, so the waistcoat will be a little bit longer than the pattern.

I've discovered that I need to think about the actual length rather than the number of stitches/rows, then things are more logical to me.

You live and you learn right?!

I would not have figured this out without the very kind help of the Ravelry community, cannot praise it enough. Thanks all!

I'm going to cast on now... *excited!*

Update: I just read a VERY helpful and informative post on this topic over at Zilredloh. Go check it out!

Another update: Are you a knitter, if so watch this youtube knitting video. Do you identify with her? I do... haha!


  1. Sounds like you're really close and know your next steps! I love Ravelry, everyone is so nice and helpful on there. :)

    It was hard when I began knitting to think that having more stitches per inch would result in a smaller garment rather than a larger one. It seems so backwards and if I'm doing my math late in the evening I still manage to confuse myself. heh

  2. I'm so glad I'm not the only one! It's very reassuring. Thanks for coming by :)


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