Misadventures in Gauge or I Should Know Better by Now.

I am deeply ashamed. I wallow in a miasma of guilt and self-recriminations.

It’s the first rule of knittering… Swatch for gauge, get gauge, then start your project. My entire knitting life has been spent flying by the seat of my pants (sexy pants, to be sure) and I cannot recall a single swatch in my twenty plus years of knitting and crochet. Pure laziness. There is no excuse.

I’ve had a recent run of projects that have demonstrated the need for swatches and why I should probably stop being so darned over-confident and actually swatch til I get gauge.

Rowan Butterfly Dress

Copyright Jennie Atkinson

Exhibit A. The Butterfly Dress
turned out generously wide and ankle length
I can live with this, believe it or not. I have plans to ruche up the bottom half, which will disguise the figure flaws of my lower half and be infinitely more flattering. However, it serves to demonstrate how badly awry one can venture.



Prairie Tunic

Copyright Interweave Knits

Exhibit B. The Prairie Tunic
disproportionately wide
I really liked the pattern and the way it knit up and even the yarn I was using despite it’s decidedly yellow qualities. I frogged it. No pictures, no evidence, it never happened.




My face says it all really

Exhibit C. Apres Surf Hoodie

(attempt the second)

About three sizes too big.
I am considering donating this to somebody who will both appreciate it and wear it. I’m considering frogging it and reknitting it so that it will fit… decisions, decisions.






All three of these (swatchless) mistakes have been made in the last six months.
And then I look back…

  • the first sweater I made, from a vintage pattern in a substitute yarn that turned out with the arms too short and the body too short, and somehow proportionately just WRONG to be a simple matter of turning out a smaller size. There was also the rookie mistake that I made it in a novelty yarn that involved purple, sparkles, and chenille. *shudder* My utter despair was alleviated exponentially by my Amazonian friend (who has achieved surrogate Aunty status – a very rare thing to be granted) who cherished it as a crop sweater for the colder nights when clubbing.
  • Attempt the first of the Apres Surf Hoodie which turned out small (but wearable) prompting attempt the second.

I need to stop reliving my mistakes or I may throw away my needles in despair, and my Mummy spent too much money on my Knitpro interchangeables to risk it.

The obvious conclusion is that I need to start swatching. *Sigh*. And since I ALWAYS substitute yarn, it is especiallly important. I wonder how long this resolution will last? Hmm… I’m guessing for the next two projects if I’m lucky.


2 thoughts on “Misadventures in Gauge or I Should Know Better by Now.

  1. Pingback: In the Jungle, the Peaceful Jungle « Cast-Offs and Cast Aways

  2. Pingback: WIP Weds 2 « Cast-Offs and Cast Aways

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