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Forum Etiquette - Please Read Before Posting

Please read the forum etiquette, by posting here you agree to be part of a polite society. https://fiberkind.com/articles/4133-forum-etiquette
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    How much do swatches lie? What makes them lie??? Can they be civilized and taught better manners?

    I know swatching flat for a project in the round can cause problems. Swatching in stocking stitch for colorwork or cables is asking for trouble.

    But ... Really?

    How do you deal with the vagaries, problems and pitfalls of swatching, besides by not swatching at all?

    I haven't had problems with swatching, other than the aggravation of having to do it multiple times. I only swatch if it really matters - clothes and things that need to be a specific size. My local knitting group did an afghan where we all did blocks. They needed to be a specific size. I had to swatch multiple times. I had to go down two or three needle sizes to get gauge. When we turned in our squares, one of the ladies turned in this huuuuge square, mumbling, "It seems kind of big." I gently asked if she had tested her gauge. She said, "What's gauge?" The organizers realized they should have given a lesson in gauge first. It said right on the pattern what size the squares should be but I think a lot of the women didn't notice and they didn't know you need to change your needle size if you are creating a huge square.

    What I find really difficult is how different stitch patterns affect gauge so much. I can do two pairs of socks with the same needle, same stitch count and same brand of yarn and come up with radically different size socks by using different patterns. I don't know how you are supposed to anticipate that difference.
    Naperville, IL - Growing zone 5b


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