When you are checking your gauge, which method do you use?

I find myself trying different things to check my gauge, and I was curious as to what methods everyone else uses?

I’ve just done a regular swatch and measure it in 3 or 4 different areas and take the average.

How big of a swatch do you make? I think I don’t make mine big enough because I get so anxious to get started on my project and I’m a really slow knitter.

The one gauge swatch I’ve done so far, I did by casting on the estimated number of stitches per inch (from the yarn’s wrapper). Then I knit 10-15 rows. I measured the width of the swatch and divided it by the total number of stitches cast on to get the stitches per inch.

I was making a pair of socks w/out a pattern, so I needed to find out how many stitches to cast on to get the correct diameter.

Yeah but, while you are working on a project what are the ways you measure? I have been just taking measurements here and there by one or our inches at a time. In various places.

I find it hard to measure too, because it’s too easy to give a little tiny stretch and suddenly the swatch is bigger…

After I’ve made a swatch, I measure stitches in the central area, avoiding the edges (because they might curl or are uneven). Then it’s a good idea to wash or otherwise block the swatch and measure again to see how it ends up.

But when you are knitting clothes I’m sure a centimetre more or less, here or there, won’t even be seen… except by the perfectionist eye of the knitter! (surely knitters are their own harshest critics)

I also worried about inadvertently stretching my swatch as well while I was trying to measure it. How do you not do that–particularly if the swatch is in stockinette stitch, and it curls up on the edges?

I’m glad you asked this question! Hopefully, one of the gurus will have a clever answer.


The `proper’ way to do it is knit at least 6" wide, put it on the table, and measure the middle stitches. You can even get by with measuring 2" here and there and see if they’re consistent.


I always cast on at least 10 more stitches than the gauge of the pattern says and then also measure the center stitches here and there. I have to confess, though, that I rarely make it as long as it is wide. :shifty:

While it takes a little more time, I’ve started blocking my swatch due to a bad experience with my gauge expanding after washing the sweater (doing all things correctly).

I knit 10-15% more stitches than the gauge and try to knit up to 3-4 inches.
soak the swatch (if water is allowed) and then pin to block and let dry.

Then I take several center measurements.

I just don’t want to get burned again after putting all that work into a sweater to have it not fit after washing. Geesh.

Dee Dee