One of the challenges I’ve had as a knitter is getting the pattern’s gauge to match my swatch.

I have this problem with following patterns – usually when I get the stitches per inch to match the gauge, the rows per inch don’t.  Probably because I knit loosely. 

The other day I realized the pattern I planned to use just wouldn’t work with my knitting.  I couldn’t knit the yarn tightly enough to get close enough to the gauge for the pattern to fit.

I could have been frustrated, but instead decided to redo the pattern with my gauge. I knit a swatch in the pattern, with my yarn and needles, and like it. So, I got out some paper and a pencil, and used my math skills to adapt the pattern.

I like to be as precise as possible, so try to do it on paper. Some folks like to wing it, and that’s fine too. Whatever works —and isn’t stressful is okay.

Probably the simplest way is  to just recalculate the stitches. For example, if the pattern gauge is 5 stitches to the inch, and calls for you to cast on 20 stitches, that’s 4 inches:

20 stitches × 1 inch/5 stitches = 20 stitches × 1 inch/5 stitches = 20 × 1/5 inch = 20 ÷ 5 = 4 inches

Most of that I do in my head, and you probably do too. I wrote it all out in case you don’t. 😉

So, if my gauge is 4 stitches per inch, and I need 4 inches, I need to cast on 16 stitches:

4 stitches/ 1 inch × 4 inches = 4 stitches/ 1 inch × 4 inches = 16 stitches

You can go through your pattern, and make similar changes throughout.

Or you can use a pattern that doesn’t have a gauge. 

Like a knitted dishcloth pattern. While some have a gauge, many do not.

 Do I Have To Follow the Knitting Gauge For a Knitted Dishcloth Pattern?

This my pattern, and the suggested gauge is just that.  Suggested.  If your gauge doesn’t match, it’s okay.  As long as you like the finished project!

And dishcloths are nice because sometimes a tighter weave is nice, and sometimes a looser one.

Get your copy of this knitted dishcloth and towel set by clicking here right now.

Do I Have To Follow the Knitting Gauge For a Knitted Dishcloth Pattern?

To your healthy and happy knitting & caregiving,

Dr. InaThe Knitting Dr Logo
Ina Gilmore, M.D. (Retired)
“The Knitting Dr.”

Founder of and
Creator of A HEART PLAN
Ambassador of Elder Care at






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