Question on Gauge

My pattern says 16sts and 24 rows per 4 inches in stockinette

Does this mean 4 inches long? Not 4 inches square
My swatch ends up being 4 inches wide but 5 inches long


16sts and 24 rows per 4 inches in stockinette
This would mean 4 inches each direction so, yes, a square 4"by 4". But usually your stitch gauge is more important than the row gauge. If a pattern says to work the piece/s to so many inches in length, the row gauge may not matter but if you have to work a certain number of rows to make the pattern work out row gauge can be important as well. Since your stitch gauge is correct you may be all right if the pattern is not row dependent.

Thanks. It is row dependent tho. So would I try a smaller needle?

I have sometimes found that using a different needle and changing my tension will keep the stitch gauge and change the row gauge a bit. But your row gauge is a whole inch off so I don’t think that will work. You can adjust the number of rows you work even in a row dependent pattern, but it is not simple (for me at least). For instance if it had a cable panel that was done a certain number of times you may be able to do an extra repeat if it happens to be just the right length. There are other adaptations you can make as well. What is it you are doing?

I have had patterns I decided I “didn’t want to make” after all when I ran into these sorts of issues. :lol: Maybe someone else will have a more helpful answer. Telling us what you are trying to make and where the row dependent issues are at, or directing us to the pattern may help. Sorry.

It’s a hat with ear flaps and has a cable. I think I should find another pattern. I’m not experienced enough yet to adjust the pattern. Thanks

It seems you have the stitches fine as it’s 4" wide. However it’s better to cast on more sts than you need for 4" and not use the edge stitches in the measurement. So try casting on 20 sts and measure between the edge sts. Go down another needle size to see if that works, sometimes that changes the rows but not the stitches. But most people have trouble getting both dead on and for a hat, it’s really better to match the stitches. The pattern normally tells you to knit for 2" or 6".

You may not have to make any adjustments. It depends on how the pattern is written. Some patterns will tell you how many inches to knit as opposed to or in addition to how many cable repeats. In that case, you may have to knit more rows to get the required length but you can still knit the pattern.

Other patterns tell you the number of rows to knit and really, you can do the math and adjust your rows accordingly.

I rarely fuss about row gauge.

You say the pattern is a ear-flap hat with a cable. There are lots of different kinds of cables. It is quite possible that your cable will still work fine. Is it a simple cable like one crossed every so many rows over a number of stitches? If it is that kind it is easy to adjust. If it is a complex cable that makes big diamonds or something it could be harder.