For this lesson, I think it’s best that we start off with the videos and then I will make my comments afterwards. I do want to let you know that the camera angle does affect what you can see in the video. You can see parts of stitches and rows that I could not see from above the swatch. Don’t let that throw you off and think that it’s ok to ignore portions of stitches and rows.

Gauge is an important thing to learn and understand early in your knitting "career". I think most people that discount it actually don’t understand it fully, so they shrug it off. Gauge affects some things. Not only can gauge seriously affect the size of your project, it affects how much yarn you will use and the overall look of your project. If you don’t get the proper gauge for your weight of yarn, the actual knitted fabric can be too loose or too tight. A gauge that is too loose will make a sweater droopy. A gauge that is too tight can make it as stiff as cardboard. Neither things are desirable traits for a sweater. There are a several things that affect your gauge. For example, your mood, pain level, needle size (maybe even needle material), tension, style of knitting, and yarn weight. Even the dyeing process can affect gauge from yarn color to yarn color, in the same type of yarn.

I always make a gauge swatch. It depends on the project type whether I will fret much over the gauge being exact across 4”. Hat or sweater? You bet I am looking for exact gauge. Afghan? I probably won’t be fretting, but getting really close will give me the right kind of knitted fabric and close to the correct finished size. Not to mention, it helps me make sure I’ll have the correct amount of yarn. Always make a swatch at least 4” wide and knit naturally with the yarn and whatever needle size you think you will be using for your project. If you don’t achieve gauge, change your needle size not the way you knit. Never, ever, ever, ever (!) adjust your natural tension just to get gauge with a specific size needle. If you do, eventually you will forget about the adjustment and go back to your natural tension, and in the process lose gauge. Once you achieve gauge, your goal is to maintain it after you have started your project. How do you know if you have maintained gauge? It’s simple…measure often.

To put your new knowledge to the test, make a Stockinette Stitch swatch. Cast on 30 sts and work in Stockinette until your swatch measures 4 inches long. You will notice that your swatch has the tendency to curl up. It’s a perfectly normal characteristic of Stockinette Stitch. When you have reached 4 inches long, bind off. Now measure your gauge as described in the video, and across 4 inches if possible.

To check and see if you measured correctly, measure the width of the entire swatch. (Don’t forget about lying flat on a smooth surface.) Take the width and divide by 30, that’s the number you cast on. If by chance you cast on a different number, use that number instead. The resulting number is your stitch gauge. For example: 6” swatch ¸ 30 cast on sts = 5 sts per inch. Did you measure correctly the first time? If you didn’t, go back and measure again to see if you can figure out where you went wrong. If you did, congrats! For kicks, go ahead and measure row gauge too!
Let’s knit y’all!


  1. cannot figure this out 16 sts =4" 22rows=4" on making a guage please help

  2. I watched it over and over and I figured out to see if there is 16 sts in 4 inches but what is 22 rows in 4"

    1. Sorry about the delay! I'm terrible at checking my email.

      I'm not too clear on exactly what you are asking but if you still need help since you've had such a long delay, I'll try and help.

      16 sts over 4" will give you 4 sts per inch
      22 rows over 4" gives you 5.5 rows per inch

      Is that what you needed to know?