Could this gauge be wrong?


I was hoping to post a picture of my last project (felted yoga mat bag), but ack, I flaked. I had such trouble with it, but it turned out GREAT, thanks to this forum (especially Ingrid)! :muah:

One success in, I decided to try another felted pattern, from Knitted Accessories: A Knitter’s Bible. The Mighty Mitred Squares scarf on page 86. It says this will be “fulled,” and I found the threads here about fulling. However:

The pattern calls for chunky yarn, but in order to get the gauge right (16 sts, 20 rows = 4"), I have to drop the needle size to a US 6, which seems really wrong for something that’s going to be felted. Also, the measurements for the piece only drop 1/2" (6" wide completed, 5.5" wide after fulling).

Any thoughts?

Maybe fulling doesn’t shrink as much as felting? I could be wrong, but chunky yarn on size 6 isn’t traditional for felting projects.:??

That’s what I thought. Maybe “chunky yarn” is in the eye of the beholder? The odd thing is that the pattern included a picture, but didn’t specify a yarn. The store owner looked at the photo, and said “it doesn’t look like they used chunky yarn at all!”

I mean, it’s a [I]scarf[/I], so I’m tempted to just knit the durn thing on 10s and see what happens.

Yes, fulling just tightens and firms up the piece, rather than obliterating the stitches the way felting does. So shrinkage of only 1/2" isn’t unreasonable. Just remember that the scarf may shrink more in length than width.

“Chunky” is listed in the standard system as heavier than worsted but lighter than bulky, with a recommended needle size of 9-11 to get a gauge of 12-15 stitches to 4". So I think your store owner is on the right track and your own instinct about needle size is right. Just get yarn that will give you the right gauge, whatever it’s called. (Worsted sounds about right.) And do a swatch to see what fulling does to the yarn.

Thank you for the extra info. I went ahead and knitted the first block, and although it’s bigger than the measurements call for, I’m happy with how it’s turning out. Either the scarf in the photo is WAY bigger than the pattern calls for, or the woman wearing it is 4’2" and weighs 75 lbs. :slight_smile:

I’m going to take your advice and try out fulling on a swatch, with all 3 colors, just to see what happens.