G is for Gauge

G 

gauge

When my knitting friends and I first decided to read through Amy Herzog’s FIT TO FLATTER installments together ,my first thought was, “Does this mean I’m going to have to do a gauge swatch?”  You know, that small piece of knitting made before knitting a garment or other knitted item so that we can measure our gauge.  Seriously?

I don’t like knitting gauge swatches.  

Do you think I can sew my gauge swatches together to make an afghan?

After reading through the Sebasco pattern instructions and seeing that the bust measurements not only came in whole sizes but were sized by the quarter inch my fears were confirmed.  I knew that knowing my gauge as it compared with the pattern’s specifications was essential to better producing a well fitting garment.  If my gauge were to match that stated in the pattern I would be able to proceed with confidence (giving myself a big pep talk here).

I don’t like knitting gauge swatches. 

Do you think I can put all my swatches in a notebook for my children to inheirit?  

My gauge is typically loose so I started with some degree of confidence knitting the first 4 inch stockinette square on smaller needles.  It was off so I changed needles to get a better match and it was spot on.  I was pleased because I may need to customize Sebasco to accommodate my long waist.

I don’t like knitting gauge swatches.

Maybe I can take this swatch with me to match notions, such as buttons.

Wait a minute.  This vest doesn’t have buttons.

I know, I’ll take it with me to shop for a shirt to wear underneath it!

Now I suppose that if I really want to do this right I will steam block or wet block this swatch.  I guess I better do that.  When the swatch is completely dry I will measure it with a stitch gauge ruler.  I have learned the hard way to count the stitches carefully because even the teeniest variation can make a significant difference in the final garment.

Did I mention that I don’t like knitting gauge swatches?

Maybe I will practice my embroidery on this one and then frame it.


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4 thoughts on “G is for Gauge

  1. The latest scuttlebutt on ravelry is not only should you swatch, but the swatch should be 6″x6″ so you can measure inside the edges–apparently edges distort stitches, and that you should wash the swatch as you will wash the garment as many yarns (e.g some superwashes, silk, bamboo, and many blends, to name a few) go through serious personality changes with washing.

    Just a note from one swatching non-lover to another. My sleeves are always my swatches, but I’ve never washed a swatch before.

  2. I don’t like swatching too. I usually do half a swatch & I don’t wash it. I like Sebasco too but don’t like the idea of knitting it in pieces. Happy swatching.

  3. Steam back – wet block – guage swatches – I have absolutely no idea what they are – but it made me smile and for me that’s what matters – I imagine if I keep reading you enough I may pick up a needle or two – no, to be honest, I kind of won’t – but I’ll come back and read more, and smile 🙂 God bless and keep you! Oh, and in Your Honor, I hate gauge swatches too – though I still don’t know what they are 🙂

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