About Gauge ..... 5 tips from a Pro

Swatching is NOT optional!

There are many variables when knitting.


  1. Different colors of the SAME yarn may knit to a different gauge
  2. Different dye lots of the SAME color of the SAME yarn may knit to a different gauge
  3. Different models of the SAME gauge knitting machine may knit to a different gauge.
  4. The SAME size knitting needle from a different manufacturer may knit to a different gauge
  5. Different people, using the exactly the SAME needles, machines, and yarns may get get different gauges
The bottom line ... do a TENSION SWATCH and adjust if necessary.

From Marianne Chase - long time machine knitter and yarn store owner.
Watch this video for a refresher
about the Importance of Correct Gauge
Posted by Sue Jalowiec on 09/08/2014 at 10:36 AM | Categories:


Karen Raven

Karen Raven wrote on 09/09/14 9:20 AM

Just watched the tutorial on gauge. It didn't talk about how to measure when the swatch is not even. Also, a real challenge on a swatch comes with fine yarns. I have read that you should average out the number of stitches/rows when they are not the same. It seems my swatches are usually smaller in the center and I presume this is because of mast tension but I don't know what to do about it. I need more accurate swatches because I am so fussy about fit. I usually knit about 100 sts. x 100 rows for my swatches. Karen ~~~~ Karen, we need to remember that this is knitting ... we aren't measuring woven fabric. The nature of knitting is there is give .... It's great that you are knitting large swatches this is a huge help in getting accurate gauge. Another tip is to hang your swatch - you will get a better feel for any "drop" in the knitting. This is especially important for rayons and "slippery" yarns. Sometimes it is recommended to add a bit of weight to the swatch while it is hanging (clothespins work great). Measure both the stitch and row gauge in this position, not flat. Hope this helps. ~~~Sue
Christie Porter

Christie Porter wrote on 09/30/14 2:20 PM

Thanks for the tip about hanging the swatch! I, too, am fussy about fit and can get "hung up" on measuring the swatch. Should you take the average of several numbers if they don't measure the same or just measure once in the middle? ~~~~~~~~~ Average the numbers ... just remember, this is knitting and because of the nature of the fabric there will be variations ... It's not an exact science like woven fabric. ~~~Sue

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