Flying in the Face of Gauge

I swatched. I swatched a needle below, like I normally do because I knit loosely. I had too many stitches/inch. I went up to the needle the pattern calls for. This NEVER happens to me. I still had too many stitches/inch. The pattern called for 3.5 sts/1″ and I was getting 4.5 ish sts/1″.

The pattern you ask? It’s a lovely shawl published by Artyarns called “Shawl with Sequins and Bead Trim” by Sharon Sorken. It’s very pretty and I had the yarn in my stash. Perfect I thought.

I never knit tighter than the given gauge. It made me very nervous. I couldn’t believe that I would be on the same needle size as a pattern dictated or even more unbelievably, on a larger needle.

So, I thought to myself, this can’t be right. The pattern itself cautions you not to knit tightly that the silk will open up when it is off the needle. I measured my gauge off the needle, still 4.5 ish sts/1″. I showed Danni, who looked on in disbelief as well.

I decided to forge ahead using the same needle as the pattern and kind of convinced myself it would all be alright in the end.

Wrong! When I got 2/3 of the way done (you see you knit the back and then divide the fronts and work them separately) my shawl looked way smaller than the picture. I’d show you except I ripped it all out (gently because it’s silk).

I’m going to have to redo the swatch on a 10.5 or even crazier, an 11. If lace addi’s don’t come this big, I may be shelving this project. I’m spoiled by lace addi’s and Signature needles and can’t imagine working this up in regular addi’s. I’ve become a knitting needle snob.

So much for that relatively mindless projects. Back to the drawing board.