Thursday, February 28, 2013

Super Swatch

If you're a regular reader you'll know that I swatched yesterday. Oh how I swatched.

I swatched and swatched and I sent a picture of said swatch to my boyfriend when I was 3/4 done with it and even HE said, "That's a big swatch."

YO's indicate needle size.

Ok so we all agree. The swatch is huge. It could clothe a small baby, because I knit it in the round. Actually, due to the varying gauges it made an interesting hat that tapered toward the top before I washed it and it grew.

I always have to drop down a needle size or two, always. But I honestly thought that Alana Dakos and I must have some intangible kinship- that my listening to her podcast since it began has somehow made me in tune with her and that my gauge was going to be spot on with the suggested size six's. Oh how wrong I was.

I was aiming for a gauge of 24 stitches and 32 rows per four inches with dk weight yarn.
Pre-blocked measurements of my swatch were:
(measured over 4")
US 6
21 st & 29 rows

US 5
21 st & 30 rows

US 4
22.5 st & 32 rows

US 3
23 st & 30 rows

And I WOULD HAVE KEPT GOING. If my interchangeable needle set had smaller sizes I might still be swatching right now, even though it was obvious I wasn't going to get gauge unless I knit so tight the fabric would stand up on its own. So then I washed the behemoth, because I'm a good knitter like that- and I must note that the Anzula Cricket did bleed a little in the wash- and set it out to dry overnight.

So this morning I re-measured.
(measured over 4")
US 6
19 st & 24 rows

US 5
21.5 st &24 rows

US 4
22 st &26 rows

US 3
22 st &27 rows

I measured this huge swatch to within an inch of its life.

The length is 24."
(I feel this is an appropriate mention to add that this swatch is in the round.)
 I have no idea why going down a needle size sometimes give me no discernible difference in stitch gauge. (This isn't the first time I've made an epic swatch like this)

So then at breakfast (I did do a search on Ravelry for 22st/4 inch gauge but something inside me is NOT GIVING UP on the Spring Garden Tee) I got out a pen and paper to do some simple arithmetic. I thought, maybe I could get away with doing the smallest size and my loose gauge would bring it up to my size.

Original pattern is 6 stitches per inch, my tightest gauge was 5.5 stitches per inch. If I did the smallest size that would give me a 30" sweater (too much negative ease) if I did the next size up it would give me a 34.9" sweater... which would probably be OK.

So that's an option.

But I'm still digging around on Ravelry. ;)


  1. Ack! Sorry all your swatching hasn't solved the problem. I like your epic swatch though! If you seam the ends together it might make a nice cowl.

  2. Ahh- that's frustrating. I hope you come up with something.

  3. Wow - that's a lot of swatching. Especially to not get the result you wanted! As long as you do the maths and figure out how many extra stitches you need, I'm sure it'll be great (also, the yarn is beautiful)


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