Question on measuring work

pattern says knit til piece is 4" tall…do I measure the row on the needle (including the needle in the measurement) or lay the tape measure flat on the work up to the needle? It’s a size 7 needle, doesn;t seem like it would make too much difference, but want to be sure…thanks!

I always measure to the bottom of the needle. I figure the stitches on the needle aren’t knit yet.

I don’t think it’s critical either way as long as you are consistent.