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Friday, October 27, 2006

When Gauge Swatches LIE!

Had a bit of a stressful day at work and my fiance didn't end up driving up to NYC tonight as I had hoped. So I decided to wind down, go downtown and meet the Spiders. I had a lovely time and got to meet quite a few faces behind some of the NYC blogs on my list. (Sorry if I missed anyone - there were so many of you!)

And now....Why Gauge Swatches Lie:

When I got home, I sat down to knit some more - I was so close to starting the armhole. When I finally reached the correct number of rows, I laid it out for a measuring session. Hmm, 18 inches long - that can't be right!

zen blue secret
18 inches long

"Ok, calm down and breathe. Where is my sketch book?"

Hmm, should measure 14 1/2 inches. Find the gauge swatch, recheck gauge. Then I check the gauge on the sweater, here are my findings:

Swatch originally: 5.75 sts x 9.5 rows per inch

Swatch now: 5.75 sts x 8 rows per inch

Sweater: 5.5 sts x 7.75 sts per inch

ARRRRRGGGGGHHHHHH! I hate it when gauge swatches lie, cheat and steal! The sad thing is, I am so careful. I knit a BIG swatch - at least 6 x 6. I let it settle after I steam it. I wait til the next day to check the gauge and then recheck it again and again. Why, gauge swatch, why?!!!!

zen blue yarn

So here I am again, back at square one. Luckily I am patient and I realize this is just part of the process sometimes. (Luckily not all the time!) Stuff happens and I'm not going to let it get me down! In fact, on Monday I'll probably be right back in the same place - only it will be the correct place this time! So take that gauge swatch!

And before I go, here is my progress on my lonely Embossed Leaves sock for Socktoberfest. Don't worry little guy, you'll be finished one day!

socktoberfest socks

P.S. Thanks for all the nice B-day wishes everyone!


pearl said...

that has happened to me many times. i always end up frogging the whole thing, throwing the ball across the room (or i let my husband since he has a fascination for that) and then going back to it the next day. it happens to everyone honey. take a breath and go back to it later.

Alison said...

I hate gauge swatches. Hope it works out this time.

gleek said...

ooooh nooo!! you had made so much progress :( will you recalculate based on the final gauge swatch?

Ami said...

It's amazing what a difference a quarter of a stitch can make. Props to you for persevering.

schrodinger said...

Oh my God. What a sad tale, you had knit so much of it too. Thank goodness that yarn is such a pleasure to touch eh?

It was great to meet you yesterday.

lisa said...

It was great meeting you last night!!

Jessica said...

Oh yikes! And it was looking so beautiful.
It was really nice meeting you too! And I hope the fiance is feeling better. :)

cynic the lamb said...

Ouch... I'm sorry to hear that. I am sure you will be able to work some magic and the sweater will come out great.

The socks are coming along beautifully, by the way.

Hope you had a great weekend!

Katie said...

That's a phenomena I call "Math Does Not Work" in which all of our swatching efforts go compeltely to waste. It was nice to see you on Friday!

Moni said...

grrrr! Sounds very irritating. YOu do sound extra careful! I am lucky if I knit a gauge swatch let alone block it :P. I need to take some lessons from you!

Knitting Momma said...

I love how involved in the process you are...the final product is always so gorgeous because of it. ribbitribbit...and know it'll be beautiful in the end!

NinaK said...

Ha, ha, the dreaded gauge swatch. Always laughing at us.

Even if I do a large swatch, my project frequently ends up different and I have to restart. I also tend to knit swatches to a gauge that I like (for a different yarn) and have to adjust the pattern to fit.

I used to think it was just me with this failing, but apparently not.