Row gauge question

Help? I’m trying to be more “”adult” about swatching - gauge has been the bane on my existence and the reason I shy away from most projects where size matters. I now have a request from DIL to make sweaters for her sons, my (precious, adorable, fabulous) grandsons -don’t want to say no. I’ve followed swatching directions- I used yarn and circular needles I plan to use-Cascade 220 worsted Super-wash. I dragged the yarn across the back on circulars so only knit stitches in swatch. Made a continuous swatch with sizes 3,4, and 5 needles because I always have to go down for stitch gauge (pattern calls for size 6). Washed and blocked swatch. Stitch gauge behaved as expected, varying with needle changes. Size 5 works. Row gauge is much too big(???). Pattern wants 20 sts x 24 rows. Yarn used by designer: she says “worsted/Aran weight. I used Alize Baby Wool in two strands, that is the equivalent of worsted weight yarn.” ! get 26-30 rounds (28 rounds on size 5). It is a top down sweater with raglan sleeves and most of the vertical instructions are in cm so I think I can accommodate my row differences, but there are “popcorn” bobbles across the front and sleeves which should be 10 stitches x 10 rounds apart, staggered-I’m thinking this will be a problem. Am I screwed? Suggestions? image|375x500

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i love swatching described as adult knitting. i feel exactly the same way! see my question above. we need to go have coffee.

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No, you are doing great! I have knit several sweaters and do have some thoughts. I think I almost always make some changes and / or have to adapt/ adjust Something.
Yes, it’s usually fairly easy to accommodate row gauge when you are not far off. The main part to worry about is the armhole depth It helps if the pattern has schematics for how long the yoke is from top of shoulder to the bottom of the armholes, so you don’t knit too short. If it doesn’t, ask mom to measure that length on a garment that fits. (and you may want to make it a big bigger…I have grands also!)
For the bobbles:
– I think it would be just fine to go ahead and knit without worrying.
— a 4 x 4 swatch would let you play with either stitch or row gauge to see if you want either bigger or smaller.
Good luck!

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Thanks for the confidence boost and the specific helpful advice!!

Hi. Some of my tips expand on what has already been shared:

Create a large swatch in your chosen yarn and needles. By large, at least 6x6 or larger. Measure gauge across several points and take an average of the result. Include the stitch pattern not only to become familiar with it but to make any adjustment. Keep that swatch for future reference. It’s a record of your accomplishments. :slightly_smiling_face:

A schematic is important. If the pattern doesn’t include one, make your own. Mark every 10 rows as you knit and make adjustments as per the schematic. For example: if the armhole depth is 10 inches, designer’s gauge is 7 rows/inch and you’re getting 8 rows, make your adjustments. Remember to add/subtract yarn amounts to accommodate any change needed.

Not everyone understands how to properly measure. If possible have the base garment sent to you or setup a Zoom call and get the measurements that way.

Lastly, (and I can’t believe I’m saying this because I really prefer seamed garments), top down styles for children are great because it’s easier to remove the lower edge treatments (front/back/sleeves) and add stitches as they grow.

Keep all of your notes for future reference. You never know when you’ll need them again.


Wow! Thank you so much. I will try to follow your suggestions!

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Okay, heresy here…I mostly knit in the round, but never swatch stockinet in the round. I do a flat swatch starting with 4 to 6 rows of garter, then go to stockinet. It doesn’t really matter in my knitting which way I produce stockinet, in the round or the flat. BUT, do an example of each and see if YOU are knitting like that. If your gauge shifts when you purl, as some people’s does, you will have to continue making round swatches.

Also, remember any pattern suggesting worsted OR aran weights will be looking for a gauge a bit larger than one saying just worsted.