Before You Begin
Swatching involves more than just knitting up a square of fabric with a certain size needles to get a specific gauge. Even if it doesn't say so, pattern gauge is almost always given for fabric that has been washed and blocked. GASP! You need to measure your gauge AFTER your swatch has been washed and dried or blocked in whatever way the finished item will be cared for because your fabric could, and likely will, stretch, shrink or felt the first time it gets wet.
And guess what. If you like the way your swatch fabric looks and feels, you can still use a pattern even if your gauge doesn't exactly match the pattern gauge. A word of caution though, you will need to do a little math to make adjustments to the pattern. That's a topic for another time.
MaterialsThanks to Skacel for providing the CoBaSi by HiKoo yarn shown in this demonstration. It's available locally at many yarn shops and online at Makers' Mercantile.
The Importance of Swatching
Ready to try this technique in a pattern? The Wallflower Sweater Pattern shown in this lesson has videos to help you learn more about:
- The Importance of Swatching
- Tracking Progress in Complex Knitting Patterns
- Open Bar Increase (a.k.a. Open Make 1 Increase)
- Decrease Slant and Stitch Charts - 3 Helpful Tips
- Smocked, or Tied, Stitches
- Dividing the Body and Casting On Underarm Stitches for Top Down Sweaters
- Picking Up Underarm Stitches for a Gap Free Sleeve
- Suspended Bind Off (Purlwise)