Gauge question when substituting yarn

I’m planning to knit the Cozy shawl from Knitty and just bought some soysilk at my LYS. It wasn’t what I was planning to use, but then I fell in love with it. Now I wonder if I’ve made a big mistake…

The gauge from the pattern’s yarn (Reynolds Mandalay, 100% silk) is 4.5 st/in, 5 rows/in on size 8 needles. The soysilk gauge is 5 st/in, 8 rows/in on size 6 needles. I tried the pattern with size 7 needles instead, but I think it’s too loose, so I’m going to do it with 6’s.

My question is, if the original pattern called for about 800 yds of yarn, how much do I need to get about the same size shawl? The stitch gauge is close to the same in stockinette - does this mean it should be about the same in the lace pattern? (Probably a very stupid question, but I’ve never done anything with lace before.) Should I be comparing weights instead of yardage? Am I going to need to spend my entire salary on yarn to make this?

What have I done? :??

If it’s close in st st, I would say the gauge should be pretty close it the lace. If you really want to be sure knit a lace swatch. In any case if the gauge is really that close, I can’t see you needing more than a couple more skeins at the most to get the same size shawl.

I found a yarn I love but the gauge is about half for the pattern. Can I double the number of stitches? It is a baby sweater in stockinette, basically and if the gauge is 4 sts-in and I get 8 sts-in, the pattern calls to cast on 45 can I just cast on 90?
or i could double strand and get closer- 5 sts-in. which one would be better? thanks

I personally don’t like the look of double strand as much but you could try a swatch like that to check gauge and see if you like it.

If you are getting exactly half the gauge called for in the pattern with the smaller yarn, then yes you should just be able to double everything.

Thanks for the reply, Kemp! I ended up deciding I liked the look using 7’s instead, so that helped some, and I bought one extra skein. Hopefully that’ll be enough to get me to something close to a good size. The rows are much larger when I knit the lace than they are in stockinette… I wish I knew what the row gauge was that was used in the pattern.

Whatever, though, I’m enjoying knitting it, and that’s what matters.