I am sure you are all caught up and have made your tension swatch. If not, stop reading, go make a swatch then continue.
Your swatch should look something like this:
I use this technique when I am using expensive fine yarns or rare yarns, think handspun. Another reason to use this technique is if you think you may only have enough yarn to finish the project.
Measuring the Swatch
The manual which comes with your machine will have instructions on how to measure the swatch. Here is a brief overview. Remember:
Green – Standard Machine
Yellow – Midguage Machine
Blue – Bulky Machine
Passap – Use a standard ruler
Lay the ruler with the ‘S’ horizontally with the ‘S’ against the left marked stitch. Record the number at the right marked stitch. Turn the ruler over displaying the ‘R.’ Lay it vertically with the ‘R’ at the top of the fashion yarn (or below the WY). Record the number at the bottom of the fashion yarn (or above the WY).
Remember the number will give you stitches/rows per 10 cm.
Example: You recorded 28 stitches and 40 rows to 10 cm., to figure out your stitches per inch divide the numbers by 4. If you are comfortable working in metric, simply multiply 24 x 2.8 to get the number of stitches to cast on and 19 x 4 to get the number of rows to knit.
So, what do we do with it and how does it give us flexibility in our pattern choices? We will discuss the Conversion Factor next time.
Paulina LaShawn combines photographic images and traditional textile techniques to create one of a kind works. Toia incorporates her study of indigenous textiles and her photography to produce art, born of photography and emerging woven cloth. Whether she uses Chinese silk and hair embroidery or a combination of weaving techniques, she can weave your story and fine art image into a beautiful tapestry.