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Sunday, February 6, 2011

Checking Your Gauge - Why it's so important

When making a scarf, afghan or purse, gauge is not as important, but when making garments, gauge is of utmost importance. I cannot stress how important this is. You do not want your garment meant for an adult to end up fitting a 5 year old. It can easily happen. Work up a 4”x 4” swatch before beginning any garment, measuring the gauge in the center of the swatch. To do that, you need to place straight pins at the beginning and end of the designated number of stitches, or rows (see photo below), then count the number of stitches between the pins. If your gauge does not match, keep trying a larger or smaller hook until you get the correct gauge. If you want your project to fit or look like the one in the photo, your gauge must match the gauge given with the pattern. Check your garment often, because when you lay it down and come back later, your gauge could be quite different. It happens to everyone. They say that when we are stressed, we tend to crochet tighter, and I can attest to that!

Example of getting the correct gauge: 
 13 dc = 3"

If you have more than 13 dc sts to 3", that means your sts are too tight (or too small) and you need to use a larger hook, but if you have less than 13 dc sts to 3", your stitches are too big (or too loose) and you need to use a smaller hook.
The swatch sample in the photo below has 13 stitches between the straight pins (3")


  1. I admit I still haven't gotten adjusted to checking my gauge every time but I'm getting better. Thanks for the reminder!

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