Guage question

Hi -

Here’s what the pattern says about the guage:
20 Stitches and 27 rows = 4 inches/10 cm

I made my swatch with the recommended needles (size 7), and it measures 3.5 inches across, which means I need to try size 8, right?

BUT, doesn’t the guage they want translate to 5 stitches per inch? When I count stitches per inch, it’s exactly 5. So which one do I pay attention to?

yes, 5 spi…but if you’re getting 5spi, you should have 4"…are you stretching the swatch out a bit on one measure and not on the other?

Also, what is the swatch for? 1/2 difference over 4" might not make much difference on some stuff, but on say, a sweater, it would make the fit really off.

OK, I figured it out… I was making a really silly mistake in my measuring, but it turns out my guage is right on!

I now have more questions, but I’ll post them under the appropraite headings! Thanks for your help!