Sunday, March 05, 2006

The power of gauge...

I've been making tons of progress on the Belted Wrap Jacket in the past few days, it's all I've been working on. Then I got an e-mail from Lesley who is also making the same sweater. I had asked her what size needles she was using and she told me she's using 5s. Hmmm, I'm using 7s. Maybe I should check my gauge. I had actually made a swatch for this! I'm supposed to get 26 stitches/4" in the pattern. It looks like I'm getting 3.25" for a pattern repeat which is 19 stitches, so about 23.4 stitches/4". That's quite a bit off! So why didn't I realize this when I knit the swatch? So now 6 repeats and 8160 stitches later I don't know what to do. When I lay it flat on the table it actually measures the correct width, but when I block it I suppose it will stretch a bit? It doesn't actually look overly huge. I'm not sure if I should cast on again on 5s or if it will be ok as is. I guess I could wash the swatch and see what happens. I need a blocking board (hint, hint for my birthday in May). Usually a swatch is just stockinette stitch which is pretty straightforward, but I'm not sure how to figure out my gauge on a pattern. Do I need to stretch it out when measuring? I guess measuring and saying "oh, it looks like it's about 3" a pattern repeat, looks close enough to me" is not the best way to check your gauge. And we got to babysit Jordan last night, she made herself at home on the couch!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

So does this mean that the meter on the right side of the page is going down rather than up? Good thing you haven't had any catastrophic injurys that would prevent you from knitting any longer....

3/05/2006 09:02:00 PM  
Blogger amylovie said...

I've always wondered that myself. I don't know how you check gauge with a pattern like that.


3/06/2006 07:32:00 AM  
Blogger Jes said...

Look at that stinky dog! She loves to be on the couch. You should have seen her last night, so bitter the cat had the couch.

Anyhow, it's hard to measure the gauge in pattern. If it gives the guage in stockingette, then go with that, otherwise use your "in pattern" swatch. I would wash it and block it. Otherwise you might have more surprises, which you don't want.

3/06/2006 11:28:00 AM  

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