Friday, August 3, 2007

Gauge, again--a cautionary tale

Dear readers: here is a little summer interlude in the nature of a cautionary tale. TECH- knitting's summer break has allowed time to knit on a big project--a sweater. The body is made with a circular needle, but the arms with dpn's. I forgot, but now remember (the hard way!!) that gauge can change EVEN when you use the same size needles. Knitting with dpn's requires the gauge to be tight enough to prevent the needles falling out of the work, while knitting around with circulars does not present the same issue--you can knit a lot looser because the circular needles aren't going anywhere. Moral of the story: Check your gauge when you switch from one kind of needle to another, regardless of whether the two needles are the same size. That way, you can avoid being an idiot like me--who had to knit a three-armed sweater.



Blogger Kat said...

Oh yes. I've knit a five-armed sweater before. Not my idea of a good time. I don't even have the excuse of changing needles, just being under more stress.

I feel your pain!

August 3, 2007 at 11:06 AM  
Anonymous kmkat said...

Oh, I'm so sorry you had to knit the extra arm, but (dare I say it?) it makes us novice knitters feel better to know that even The Experts screw up sometimes. :)

August 3, 2007 at 4:41 PM  
Blogger Angie said...

Thank you for the good reminder! Enjoy your summer!

August 3, 2007 at 7:13 PM  
Blogger Sally Comes Unraveled said...

Thanks for the reminder. I think gauge lessons can only be learned the hard way. It's human nature.

August 4, 2007 at 11:10 AM  
Anonymous marjorie said...

It happens to the best of us. I also get a different gauge if I switch from wood to metal needles, as sometimes is the case when I'm using wood dpns for the narrow part of something circular until I can get to a 16-inch circular needle--or the reverse, as on a hat. For hats, this hasn't cause any noticeable difference, but for arms of baby sweaters it has.


August 8, 2007 at 9:26 AM  
Blogger vtwopoint5 said...

I just learned the same lesson. I'm doing my first pair of socks on two circs. Now I know I need to use smaller needles for that method.

August 10, 2007 at 11:46 AM  
Anonymous Jutti said...

I think we've all done this in our hurry to get into a new project!

August 11, 2007 at 1:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I loved your series on weaving in (came via link from Grumperina) and thrilled to find a wealth of information! How great to improve my knitting and learn new skills. I would love some information on weaving in ends in lace garments. I'm a new lace knitter and have a couple of shawls to weave in and I am sore afaid!!

Thanks, and have a great summer.

August 21, 2007 at 11:00 AM  
Blogger Tallguy said...

An excellent time to use Magic Loop!

I remember someone once saying that he knits certain projects while listening to classical music; the choice depends on what the tension should be! For lace, you can use Mozart; for firm knitting, you can listen to Wagner!! But never change your music! I keep that in mind when working to try and stay in the same mood throughout, for tension does change according to what happened during the day.

Good idea to always start with the sleeves... then adjust the body to match the sleeves!

August 26, 2007 at 1:43 AM  

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