Tension,needle size


I really need help. Have just finished a baby blanket and even though my tension square seemed correct the size is out. It should measure 24" x 30" but is 21" x 28" and I seem to have knitted many more rows than I should have.

This is the tension instruction; 22sts and 28 rows to 4in over stocking st on 4mm needles. It is sirdar pattern 1926.

I would like to knit another one so really want to get it right this time.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks Melanie

Measure the blanket to see what you actually did get for sts per inch. And if you knit the sample in stockinette stitch, that may give you a different gauge than another pattern stitch. For a large item you need to use more stitches and rows than is given for the gauge, so on this one 30 sts may have given you a more accurate measurement. Can you stretch out the blanket a little? Even acrylic will sometimes grow a little in the washer and dryer.

Hi Suzeeq

I have 6 and a bit st per inch. I have st st a swatch on 4.5 needles now and that has given me 5 and a bit per inch. All have been done in st st including the blanket.

I am really confused!

If I change needle size should I change the size for the ribbing too cos this also seems very tight.

Or should I try to knit more loosely?


If you like the feel of your swatch with the 4.5mm needles (and it’s probably closer to what the pattern intends) then go ahead with these needles. Yes, since the ribbing is tighter than you like, go up a needle size for that too. At 5 and a bit sts per inch the blanket is going to be slightly larger, more like ~25inches but that’s ok.

Thank you both for your help, I am just trying a few more swatches and trying to knit less tight to see what happens. Ive realised that I pull the wool strand tight after each stitch when I am not concentrating properly.


If I change from needle size 4 to 4.5, should I change the rib from 3.25 to ( 3.5 or 3.75 ).

Well 6 and a little stitches per inch comes out around 25 sts per 4" and the pattern should be 22 sts. So your stitches are much smaller which is why the blanket came out smaller. Yes change the size of both needles. Use a 5mm and a 4 mm, the ribbing doesn’t need to be done on needles that much smaller.

Thank you. Just need new needles and wool now.

Many Thanks