What is Gauge?
Have you ever seen “Gauge” listed in a crochet pattern and wondered what it was? Well I’m here to tell you! Gauge is the number of stitches and rows per inch that is reached by using a specific size of yarn and crochet hook. Everyone’s gauge is unique to them because everyone crochets differently. Some crochet more tightly or more loosely than others. The measurement that you reach for a project may differ from what is stated in the pattern because your gauge may be different, even if you are using the same yarn and hook. If you are working on a project that requires specific measurements, it is always important to work up a swatch to make sure you have the right gauge before committing to an entire project.
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How do you determine gauge?
- If you are able to reach the gauge using the same hook size that is specified in the pattern, then you can begin your project.
- If there are fewer stitches (or rows) per inch than what the pattern gauge specifies, you will need to use a smaller hook.
- If you have more stitches (or rows) than what is specified, you will need to use a larger hook.
- If you are unable to initially reach the proper gauge, you will have to keep working on the swatch, going either up or down a hook size, to ensure that you eventually reach the proper gauge.
Why is gauge important?
Not all projects require a specific gauge and that is ok. Projects such as blankets, sweaters, and other garments usually require gauge because they have specific measurements that need to be reached to obtain the correct sizing. Achieving the proper gauge can mean the difference of having a medium-sized adult sweater or a kid-sized sweater. Having the right gauge will allow you to always have the right measurements for your garments and other projects!