The answer is you. Machine knitters know the importance of a tension swatch. Did you know it is just as important for hand knitting? Once you master the tension swatch, you will realize a whole world of design possibilities are open to you.
Although everything I am about to say applies to hand knitters, too, I am going to address machine knitters. I am not blowing off hand knitting but, you can find tons of information on all type of subjects. For machine knitting, on the other hand, the information is fragmented. It is my goal to provide you with classic information you can use for all your machine knitting pleasure.
Have you ever wished a pattern were written for a bulky machine or vice versa? Once you master the tension swatch you can knit any pattern written for any gauge machine. Well, as long as you have enough needles . . .
Flat Bed Machines
A tension swatch should be made for all stitch patterns used in the garment, ribbing, tuck, etc. The tension swatch is the same for all the machines except the Passap. Here is how I knit my tension swatches:
The chart is listed below for your convenience.
Here is an example of your tension swatch. Next time we will discuss how to read the darn thing and apply it to our patterns.
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.