Sunday, March 20, 2011

gauge swatches lie

Gauge swatches lie, egregiously!

I think I can write about it calmly now, I have slept on it. I was feeling confident I could knit a sweater after the success of Sister Suzy's sweater. I did a search of Ravelry looking at patterns that were used with the Bernat Satin Sport yarn I have.

I found Amy King's Tappan Zee sweater pattern. And it had instruction in my size! I reviewed all the projects, in Ravelry, taking note of the changes some of the knitters had made while looking carefully at the photographs for the way it fit on different people. I noted, as some of the others had, as the sizing went up the neckline got looser to the point of almost falling off the shoulders of some. I dropped the neck size down four sizes and then increased on the first round of stockinette to my size. I knitted a gauge swatch. I was getting gauge! I knitted along happily doing the increases as prescribed watching the yoke grow by leaps and bounds wondering about how humongous it was getting. Telling myself it had to be that big to get around my square shoulders and large chest with room for my dainty upper arms.

After I did the second repeat of the diamond lace pattern I decided to try it on to find out how much more I need to knit to make it fit length-wise around the chest and under the arms. As I was transferring stitches to another circular needle. I notice how quickly the needle was filling up and I wasn't even halfway around the sweater! With great trepidation I tried it on. At least, one other fat lady and me could have wrapped it around us at the same time! WAHHHHHHH! I re-measured gauge. . . 4.25 stitches to the inch!. . .not 5! Row gauge was 6 to an inch. . .not 8! Expletive! Expletive! Expletive!

I frogged the whole thing last night! Washed the yarn to remove the kinks before giving up and going to bed to sleep off the frustration. The yarn is still drying as I write.

Using Ann Budd's recommendation in 'The Knitter's Handy Book of Patterns' for using the gauge you are getting. I will go down 4 sizes on this pattern. What is it with me, and 4 stitches to the inch with 6 rows to the inch! I knit with #10 needles I get 3.75 stitches to the inch. I knit with #6 needles I get 4.25 stitches to the inch. Sigh!

Well, I printed a new copy of the pattern and have it marked up with notes in the smaller size. As soon as the yarn dries I will try again!

Have a good day!



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