Giveaway: Swatch Like You Mean It!

You should swatch.  You know that, right?  I mean, it’s right there in every pattern you start.  And even if it weren’t there, you’d know anyway.  Everyone knows you should always swatch before starting a project.

Click Here for more info!

Y’know what?  I’m realllllly bad at swatching.  I mean, I do it…  most of the time.  And pretty grudgingly, if I’m honest.  It feels like a waste of time — nothing but a hurdle between me and that pattern I’m just itching to cast on.

So I have always been impressed (and a little shamed) by the attitude that Mel of Singlehanded Knit’s brings to swatching.  She not only does swatches every time, but she really enjoys it — embraces it even!  She uses it as an opportunity to get to know her yarn, and to make better decisions about how to adjust her pattern because she really understands how her yarn behaves.

Huh!  Now, when she puts it that way, it actually sounds like something worth doing.  So I was seriously chuffed when Mel announced a new class she’s created that all about learning to love swatching!  Swatch Like You Mean It explores the good side of swatching — the exciting, informative, and yes, even fun side of swatching.

Click Here for course info about Swatch Like You Mean It!

In this 7 week course, you’ll get:

  • To work at your own pace
  • Lessons that will enrich & enliven your swatch making
  • Weekly audio/video of a key technique
  • Bite sized activity to practice & master
  • Small time commitment~Big time results
  • Two patterns designed exclusively for class….one for you and one for your home
  • Clear & informative weekly PDFs to download and keep as reference


And here’s the best part…  Mel is offering you the chance to win your placet in Swatch Like You Mean It!  All you have to do is leave a quick comment below telling us the number one excuse you have for not swatching, and you will be in with a chance to win.  Make sure you comment by midnight (PST) on Sunday, and then check the SpaceCadet blog early next week to see if you’re the winner!

And then get ready to learn to love swatching!

Click here for More Info!

There’s gotta be small print:  NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to entrants worldwide, age 12 or older.  Void where prohibited. Odds of winning depend on number of entries received. Sweepstakes ends 11:59 p.m. PST on January 19, 2014.  Entry is made via a comment on this blog post. Limit one entry per person.  Sponsored by Singlehanded Knits and SpaceCadet Inc, PO Box 113312, Pittsburgh PA 15241.  Prize is one (1) space in the Swatch Like You Mean It course, valued at $24.99.  Winner will be selected by random drawing.  Cannot be redeemed for cash.  Cannot be substitued.  Employees of SpaceCadet Inc are ineligible.  A list of winners will be available on the SpaceCadet blog on or after January 21, 2014. For full official rules, visit


284 thoughts on “Giveaway: Swatch Like You Mean It!

  1. I’ve knit swatches before but I didn’t know how to read them so the garment still turned out not fitting correctly. I’d love to learn more!

  2. I don’t swatch because I’m lazy and I’m often in a hurry to get going.

    Anne Standish January 14, 2014 at 12:55 am | Permalink | Reply
    My excuse for not swatching – laziness!

  3. I’m always so excited to be starting a new project that swatching just seems like a chore especially if I don’t get gauge first time and then have to do another and maybe even another!
    That said I do get why I need to swatch.

  4. I don’t swatch because I’m afraid I will run out of yarn AND I assume I can check gauge after I’ve knitted a few inches. Silly but true. Need to have my mind changed.
    Thanks for the possibility of this wonderful opportunity.

  5. I totally agree with Rona so I hope we are both lucky 🙂 thanks for this opportunity !

    “Rona Betts January 13, 2014 at 7:34 pm | Permalink | Reply
    I have never really successfully swatched, it still ends up different when I actually make the garment. I guess I really need the class!”

  6. Eustacia January 14, 2014 at 8:00 am | Permalink | Reply
    The two main reasons for me not swatching are impatience to get started on the “good part” and irrational worry on not having enough yarn if I “waste” some swatching. (Which is silly since I almost always buy more than I need lol)
    Second Change:
    I think these are two of the reasons that I don’t swatch! Know I should but don’t.

  7. Heidi (tinkerplinkmama) January 16, 2014 at 3:01 pm | Permalink | Reply
    The biggest reason that I don’t want to swatch is “wasting” my precious yarn on a swatch. I have next to zero money to spend on yarns, so it is really difficult for me to knit them up in a swatch.

    I know what you mean. I buy enough yarn for the project (size XL usually) and what little is “extra” is not enough to swatch properly.

  8. Pebbles says,
    “No guts, no glory!
    So if the final product comes out the size as the designer intended, that’s a bonus, right?
    I really, really should swatch ;)”

    I know what you mean, Pebbles! I know I should swatch, but I always assume my knitting will be consistent with that of the last project. One of these days I’ll learn!

  9. I don’t swatch because it doesn’t bother me to rip out an entire garment. By the first few inches I know if I’m off and just change needle size for another few inches and then rip the whole thing out and start over. I know, it may sound counter productive but I’m very much a process knitter rather than a project knitter.

  10. I just don’t really know how to make it work for me, so I just don’t. I would really love to know how to be good at swatching!!!

  11. My number one reason or excuse for not swatching is time!!! With a busy project bag business, I hardly have time for knitting , so when I finally sit to knit, whether sweater or shawls or hats, etc. the garment itself had to be my swatch. Yes , I do check gauge, and rip
    Out if I need to, and start over, but at least I feel I’m making progress!
    I know I’m not. I wish, sooo much, I loved swatching so much, I would not consider knitting without it,
    How can I change that ? Seems impossible !

  12. I’ve always rushed swatches but have gotten better about making a good one, washing and blocking it. Would love the class. Thanks for the chance(s) to win.

  13. I swatch when the pattern says to do it. Mostly I make scarfs, fingerless gloves, hats, blankets etc. I do swatch for vests, sweaters etc. I think its important as you don’t want to make something that takes you part of a year to make and it doesn’t fit. UGH!!! that would be horrible!!

    I wanted to wait to chime in as I read these until after a winner had been drawn, for it would have been silly for me to win a spot 😉
    I am so blown away with all the different thoughts, attitudes and even (legitimate) concerns with knitting!
    My sincerest hope is that through the things we do in this class you will not only understand how to create swatches that help you successfully create things, but that you will ENJOY the process!

    Looking forward to “seeing” you in class!
    Much aloha to YOU all!

  15. I just want to get started on the new project the feel of the yarn and the needles click click clicking away. I come to find out after I started my project the feel of the yarn and the pattern that my gauge is off. So I have to frog it and start over. Please help me I have never been instructed on making a swatch and the importance of

  16. I NEVER swatch because I’m a very bad girl!
    Ok, honestly, I’m making mostly shop samples which are shawls and hats and scarves and whatnot and I really feel like these patterns have been test-knit to heck, the author should KNOW what size needles to use and I shouldn’t have to be bothered with the dumb swatching. There. I’ve been honest and I feel better. But I’m still a very bad girl 😉

  17. I don’t usually swatch because I make a lot of shawls and scarves, where gauge isn’t crucial, and I make hats to donate to charity, where they will go to whomever they fit. And I hate swatching in the round.

  18. Its always the excitement of starting the project, handling the yarn, the needles. oh the searching just seems inconsequential….until you spend a month of evenings and weekends working on a cardigan, only to the yoke and shoulders don’t sit right. I didn’t swatch that project, but I have been ever since! It is a timesaver in the end, even if it feels like a waste of good yarn.

  19. …because I am not really sure I am counting the stitches and rows correctly…pretty lame I know…however I do like to swatch to see what the stitches are going to look like and if I’m using a variegated yarn…so much the better especially when it is soft and smushy!

  20. Usually I’m so excited to start the project (and because I get the bright idea to knit a gift just before it’s due, there’s often a time crunch!). Additionally, I’m never sure if the amount of yarn needed for the swatch will be the difference I need if I run low.

  21. I swatch sometimes but not always due to impatience and my happy-go-lucky attitude. But it has come back to bite me a couple of times.

  22. The biggest reason that I don’t want to swatch is “wasting” my precious yarn on a swatch. I have next to zero money to spend on yarns, so it is really difficult for me to knit them up in a swatch.

  23. I knew how to knit when I joined a knit class with an experienced teacher who told us to swatch but didn’t worry if we did or didn’t. She didn’t explain the real benefits of swatching & the ability to adjust the fit of our projects. The result of her poor teaching was a lot of ill fitting garments. Very disappointing. Thankfully with this fabulous class opportunity I will become as good as Mel.

  24. My number one reason for not swatching is that I feel like if the size turns out wrong, I can always just give away the finished project to someone else who will fit it!

  25. As a teacher, my life is really structured from August until June. Swatching made me feel like I was at work; doing something else that was totally structured. Up until about a year ago, I wouldn’t do it for this reason. Then, I made this really cute, cotton, one-piece shrug using circular needles. It looked fantastic UNTIL I casted off at the bottom of the piece and realized that it was about 4 sizes bigger than it should have been! It wasn’t even the type of piece that I could have given to someone for fear of insulting them! I religiously swatch now.

  26. I never swatch. I don’t really understand what it would be telling me and am always far too eager to just GET STARTED! I usually comb through Ravelry to find yarns that have turned out close or true to gauge to use if I don’t have what the pattern calls for to avoid swatching. I have much I need to learn!

  27. I do swatch! But often times after I finish the swatch I think…… now what? I can count stitch gauge, but sometimes my row gauge is off and I don’t know what to do. Sometimes I swatch again with a different needle size. I’d love to know more. I’m willing to do the work and the description of learning about drape of knitted fabric is intriguing. I need to know more and this class sounds very very helpful and interesting.

    1. LoriG, I totally agree, when I swatch which is always…I still get to play with the yarn but I don’t aways get the right info I need and then head into the project with maybe the right needle size and a hope that all will work out in the end! Mel,thanks for this second chance and good luck to us, LoriG!

  28. When I want to dive right in with soft, squishy yarn it is really, really hard to stop and swatch. But if something is fitted it is an absolute must.

    1. I know exactly how you feel – I am so excited to get started with the squishy yarn or the beautiful color, or the exciting pattern. Who wants to stop and swatch? But… if it is a garment and one wants it to fit…it is important!!!

  29. I can find all kinds of excuses not to swatch, topping the list are: my knitting time is limited, I’d rather knit the project; swatching is BORING!!!; I always get gauge with the designer’s recommended needle size (not true); gauge doesn’ matter for shawls; and the list goes on.

    I really need to learn to enjoy swatching and to understand all the things that can be learned from swatching.

    1. “I know what you mean”…….so if I do swatch (Hah!), and I’m off,,,,what do I do now? Yeah, I need to learn from swatching too!

  30. Swatching…

    to me swatching is like housework or mowing the lawn. you know you have to do it, and once you get started it is fine, but..and I do mean but…there is always something better to do. like knitting, or spinning or reading a good book.

  31. I “try” to swatch for all garments but get bored and when I get close enough stop and jump right in to the project. probably why I haven’t made great fitting garments thus far. Also the worry that I don’t have enough yarn to waste on a huge swatch.

  32. I would love to know more about how to “read” my yarn and know what it will do. I’m afraid to knit an adult size sweater and have it turn out to be a house-cozy or fit my son’s guinea pig after all my work and effort!

  33. Sometimes I don’t swatch, telling myself that since I’ve used that yarn before, it’s not necessary. Even though I don’t even remember what needle size I used before!

  34. I just want to get started on my project. The feel of the yarn and the clicking of the needles. Then after I have knitted a couple of inches of the project find my gauge is off and I am just getting used to the yarn and the stitches. I find that my knitting gets looser after I become comfortable with the yarn, pattern and needles. I know if I switched I could STOP this issue. HELP me. I would love to take this class it would help me so I wouldn’t have to always rip out my project. It would be right the first time

  35. The two main reasons for me not swatching are impatience to get started on the “good part” and irrational worry on not having enough yarn if I “waste” some swatching. (Which is silly since I almost always buy more than I need lol)

  36. I seldom swatch coz I seldom make garments ! Maybe I would if I did…
    It’d be good to learn all the ‘secrets’ that a swatch can tell

    1. That is TOTALLY what I always think!! (I thought I was alone)”What if I run out of yarn!!” GASP! Also, “what will I do with that swatch after? Where will I put it? It will just be around, messing stuff up.” (perhaps I think too much) 🙂

  37. No guts, no glory!
    So if the final product comes out the size as the designer intended, that’s a bonus, right?
    I really, really should swatch 😉

  38. I always feel like I don’t have enough yarn to make a decent sized swatch… Also I don’t make a lot of clothing items, mostly toys.

  39. I do not always swatcher, but I understand the value of swatching. I do swatch when knitting a sweater, but the sweater still does not always come out to the size wanted. What am I to do?!

  40. I do some swatching, but really want to move on to the project. It’s the project knitter in me getting antsy, though I know I should love the process.

  41. Like many knitters, I mostly fail to swatch because I’d rather get right to work on my latest project. It sometimes also seems like a waste of yarn, particularly if I only have so much yarn for a project because it’s handspun, discontinued, or a one-of-a-kind hand-dyed skein. I understand the value and utility of swatching, but I rarely bother to do it. Perhaps this class will change my mind about swatching and help me look forward to it nearly as much as the actual project work…

  42. I will swatch when I’m using expensive yarn & It’s something to wear other than a scarf or cowl. I have a hard time getting the right count

  43. I too lazy to swatch. It always seems a waste of time. I know in my heart that I should but then….sigh…I don’t

  44. OK, while I have to admit that I would rather just get to the project, one of the reasons I dread swatching is yarn paranoia…always fearing that if I swatch too much I won’t have enough for the project.(when I swatch I wash & block it, and as a result then don’t want it use it in the project if I don’t have to…).

  45. Swatch? I don’t need no stinkin’ swatch!!!
    Actually, I’ve recently began to enjoy the process as I swatch for Amy Herzog’s Custom Fit! You really do get to “know” your yarn, and best since you determine the pattern gauge you can pick any yarn!

  46. I swatch and then my actual project ends up with different tension than my swatch, which is not always a good thing. The learning part of it doesn’t follow through to applying it my project. So sometimes I just say, nope, not gonna swatch because it won’t affect what I end up doing anyways!

  47. I usually swatch but I make a small one, just enough to check gauge. I see that Mell recommends a larger one which is probably smart…

    (goodstuff on Rav)

  48. I have never really successfully swatched, it still ends up different when I actually make the garment. I guess I really need the class!

  49. The reason I don’t think I “need” to swatch is because I can see how it will look in my mind’s eye. Sadly, I have to say that my mind’s eye is mostly not very accurate.

  50. I do swatch like a good girl (most of the time) but I would like to learn to LOVE swatching. Swatching and I are friendly but definitely not in the love phase

  51. I never learned to swatch. I would just pick up the pattern and go. If it didn’t, I gave it to someone who it would fit.

  52. number #1 reason not to swatch: too excited to start the project and don’t want to try and find a ruler…. very bad excuses, but (shrug) that’s how I roll… ready to be converted!

  53. Swatching feels like putting on your old comfy sneakers, when what you really want is a pair of sexy boots.

  54. I try to swatch most of the time. I’m a tight knitter, so I usually have to go up a size or two from the suggested needle size. But I’m not consistent with how many sizes I need to go up. And so, I swatch, and swatch, and swatch…

  55. I do swatch most of the time, but only to get stitch count. I really don’t want to run out of yarn on a big project!

  56. Like others who have posted, I really just want to get started on the project and not take the time to swatch. Also, the gauge wasn’t as important on many of the things I have knitted. I’m the type of person who just dives into a project hoping all goes well. It’s a new year and time to learn and appreciate the POWER OF THE SWATCH!!!!!

  57. I hate swatching, I like to jump right into the project and get going. One of my goals this year is to start knitting garments and to make my projects and designs look much more professional, this class would be a great tool to add to my professional toolbox!
    Thank you so much for offering this giveaway!

  58. I always mean to swatch, I always intend to swatch, I always know I should swatch – but some how I never actually do swatch!
    Oh dear, I really need this class. I need to embrace the swatch.

  59. I’ve swatched a few times but always worry I will run out of yarn and have to take apart the swatch and attach the yarn. 2014 I am going to try and swatch more and not worry about running out of yarn since that is the reason for the swatch in the first place.

  60. It’s a combination of being lazy and not wanting to waste precious time with the yarn making a swatch.I want to get on to the pattern and be immersed in the yarn.

  61. I have only swatched a few times. I have not knit a sweater and don’ t feel it is necessary to swatch for shawls and socks.

  62. My number one reason for not swatching is because I don’t want to “waste” the yarn. Of course, this is totally illogical because without swatching my time, effort, and money is wasted and my disappointment increases.

  63. I don’t like to swatch because I am too anxious to start on the project, but I do it anyways because it really does make a difference in the fit. I would love to take the class and learn a fun way to swatch. I teach knitting classes and all my students hate doing it but I make them swatch.

  64. I’ve swatched a few times… it felt like it didn’t matter. I also worry about not having enough yarn. I would like to try garments so I need to learn from my swatch!
    Interesting class!

  65. I don’t like swatching because I am so excited to start the project & swatching “gets in my way” 😉 But I’ll admit that Mel’s patterns have warmed me up to swatching. Winning her class would be great! Thanks for the entry!

  66. The reason I don’t swatch: Mostly because I’m a very type A, have 10 different projects on needles at one time, impatient to get things done, type of person.


    At least I’m honest about it! 🙂

  67. My main reason is that I normally knit to gauge, if I do a swatch it always seems to be to gauge, so that’s my excuse.

  68. Being a novice knitter I rarely swatch because I tend to only knit items where gauge is a little more forgiving ie: accessories.
    But 2014 is the year of the sweater…my very first hand knit sweater for “moi”…so this course couldn’t be more perfectly timed!

  69. two hurdles to overcome with swatching….

    first is if I’ve only got a single luxury skein I don’t want to dip into it to swatch, it seems like wasting something precious.

    but really more, is because even when I have been diligent about swatching, I seem to get different result when working with a larger piece and that’s discouraging. why bother???

  70. Hi, my excuse/reasoning is this: I will start the project and when I get to a 4″x4″ length and width I will measure it for gauge. Then I I have my swatch in my project. The reality is I never remember to measure and I just assume I am okay. I just tell myself that if I use the needle and size yarn the design suggests that I knit just right and don’t need a swatch. Yes I really do need this class!

  71. I love swatching if it’s a project I’m really excited about, but if it’s for something I’ve done 100 times I don’t even bother.

  72. Why don’t I swatch? Usually I am so focused on creating something because I am inspired or because I NEED it (i.e., something for warmth)that I ignore the swatch and head right into the project. The number of times the size hasn’t been what I wanted? Numerous. I am ready to “see the light.”

  73. Every time I have knitted a tension square (pre “swatch”) it has always worked out correctly. So I then feel I have ‘wasted’ time when I could have been embarking on the project. Needless to say, those occasions I have failed to check my tension has left me more tense ……..

  74. I don’t really know what the swatch tells me other than needle size. Do you keep the swatch? Rip it out? I’ve swatched and then had the garmet come out too big or small. I need this class it seems!

  75. Knitting my project is just so much more fun than swatching…at least until I mess up my project because my gauage is off, or I messed up the stitch pattern, or I realize that I would have liked the fabric more with a different sized needle. THEN, I figure I should have swatched!

  76. I should swatch. I’ve done it once or twice before and it seems okay. The one time I swatched and the gauge was came out right…the sweater came out too small. What?!?

  77. I sometimes swatch, by which i mean, I cast on the project, start knitting, then measure after I’ve knit for a bit. I usually don’t do a traditional swatch because I’m too excited to start the project. It also depends on if gauge really matters for what I’m making. 🙂

  78. I’m impatient. I just want to get to the project, and I figure that I’ll get to know my yarn before I have any major alterations to make. Right?

  79. I am too impatient to swatch. Yes, it has bitten me in the rear end once or twice, but didn’t get me to change the error of my evil ways. When I see a pattern I want to knit/crochet, I can barely finish the project I’m already working on, let alone take the time to swatch the new pattern. I really need to understand more about gauge and swatching. Thanks for the opportunity to find out.

  80. I sometimes swatch for larger projects, but it just seems like a waste of time. Yes, I am lazy. Just want to get started on the project. I usually check my gauge on the project as I’m going along.

  81. I don’t swatch if the item I’m making doesn’t have a specified size! I make a lot of amigurumi and I see no point in searching for them…

  82. when I want to start a new project, I’m so excited that I want to jump right into it. laziness probably plays a part too!

  83. I usually test my gauge and – more importantly – the feel of the fabric in the first couple of inches of the project. If it feels right, I keep going and usually end up with something that works well. If not, I frog it and do a real swatch with various needles.

  84. I figure if I’ve used a yarn (or yarn weight like fingering) before then I know how it will knit up and use that as my excuse to not swatch. It’s gotten me in trouble and yet, I continue to do it in some situations.

  85. I swatch like mad when I am designing, trying to figure out the best stitch patterns and tweaks to them.

    However, for working on other people’s patterns, my biggest peeve with swatches (for gauge) is that swatches LIE. You make a beautiful gauge swatch to check your gauge, you measure gauge before and after blocking (and sometimes you actually remember to mark which needle was used for which swatch). Then you move on to your project and all of a sudden, your gauge is off and all that hard work was for naught because the blasted thing lied and you are still off gauge and need to make adjustments for your new gauge on you actual project.

  86. I am usually playing yardage chicken, so I don’t want to waste the yarn. But I’ve found over the years that my knitting has gotten looser, so where I used to almost always be spot on, I’m not any more. So I probably should start swatching. Plus so many questions are answered by swatching. I just haven’t been able to convince myself to actually do it yet…

  87. I swatch when it’s a garment that needs to fit properly and especially when it’s by a designer whose patterns I have not knit before. If I’m familiar with the designer and it’s a shawl, I sometimes skip the swatching and just guess at my needle size.
    Swatching is the best route!

  88. I don’t always swatch and lately when I do I get into the garment and my gauge changes and I have to start over. Swatching is not my favorite thing!

  89. I hardly ever swatch and know that it’s really important and I need to start doing this. I start projects over several times because after 15 rows, I realize I’m using the wrong sized needle. Help!

  90. I do generally swatch to determine which needle creates the fabric I like best for a project, but I’d have to admit I’m sometimes a little lackadaisical about blocking my swatch when it’s stockinette. Blocking doesn’t change it that much, right? Yeah, I know, it does.

  91. Lazy – I often don’t swatch with yarns I have used in the past – why do it; same yarn, same needles, same gauge, right? Wrong – the importance was driven home for me this last weekend. I had just knitted a test knit of a beret. I was asked to test knit another beret design by the same designer using the same gauge. I had a different color of the same yarn used the week before and almost skipped the swatch, but since it was a test knit, decided to do it anaway. Wow – I had to go down two needle sizes from the last beret. Perhaps the yarn was slightly thicker, perhaps it was less tightly wound, I don’t know. I just know the beret would have been way too big if I had just knit it on the same needles which I knit the last.

  92. I don’t like to swatch because I typically knit patterns from designers I’ve already had experience with and I feel like if my gauge was good once, it should be good for the rest of the patterns from the same designer. Sort of like assuming you will always be the same size in a clothing store when it’s not true at all. You should always try on clothes to make sure they fit, just like I should always swatch since it’s a different yarn and pattern, but I always feel that it’s unnecessary!

  93. My excuse is that I will just start the project & then check the gauge. At worst I start over, but if I do get gauge, I can just keep going.

  94. I sometimes swatch, if the pattern is new, for instance; but I am so bad about it!! I sometimes skip it because I am not sure of the yardage I have in the chosen yarn (I have a lot of inherited stash). Learning how to really use a swatch would be fabulous!

  95. Number one excuse for why I don’t swatch: Swatches LIE! If you are making a project in the round, and you swatch flat, swatches lie. If you are making something with lace or cables or special stitches, swatches lie. If you just had a fight with your kid, swatches lie. If you just had a massage, swatches lie. 🙂

  96. I don’t swatch because it takes me soooooo long. I find I try three or four different needle sizes to get the gauge I need. When I do swatch I measure and then begin the project. I don’t wash and block and dry….I need the class.

  97. Gosh, the excuses go on and on: 1) it is BORING, 2) I want to start knitting ASAP, 3) I think I know for that weight yarn and needle size what my gauge is, 4) it probably doesn’t matter for this item (scarf, shawl, whatever), and 5) I am ultimately too lazy! This class is a good idea, although I am not positive my bad habits are open to change after 50 years of knitting! LOL

  98. I always worry that I will not have enough project yarn – so I am reluctant to use my yarn to swatch. I always saw it as a waste of time and yarn. Your comments regarding lthe importance of learning about the yarn have helped me to change my mind.

  99. My number one excuse for not making a swatch? “I allways get it with the needle size from the label”. Second one, “why to waste all that yarn in swatching? if I run out of yarn…? I’ve painstakingly learned the importance of swatching, but I still don’t enjoy or embrace it! I’d love to take this course!!

  100. Swatching seems like a waste of my precious time. Of course, ripping back takes longer, but will I learn? I hope for the best.

  101. I don’t swatch because I can’t wait to start knitting the project. I, also, am quite lazy and have to force myself to do it. I know I should swatch since I knit a vest once that didn’t fit.

  102. Swatching? – I’ve seen reference to it in books – it looks confusing and considering that I am am still trying to master ‘non-sized’ things, I think I am ok – BUT it sounds like I really need that class so that when I get to making my next project in the 3 minutes a day I have time, that I will have to force myself to do this and have a clue what I am doing. At the minimum, thanks for drawing attention to this!

  103. I have three answers. First it feels like a waste of yarn. Secondly, does it really make that much difference? And third, I have gotten guage before and still had the project turn out way to big!

  104. I swatch, but I don’t like it. Inevitably, I have to swatch more than once to get the right guage. Then when I finally get to knit the real thing, my guage may change – probably because I’m more relaxed knitting than swatching.

  105. I don’t swatch most of the time because I use the same brand of yarn a lot and know how it behaves, I don’t swatch the rest of the time because I;m too eager to start the project.

  106. I figure if I buy the yarn and needle size called for in the pattern, I shouldn’t have to swatch! I get “confuzzled” when I have to adjust needle sizes because the swatch doesn’t match 🙁

  107. Like many here, I am too impatient to swatch. I want to get casting on and swatching just eats into my knitting time. The beginning of a new project just seems too exciting to take time from swatching.

  108. I don’t typically swatch because a) I’m usually ‘fairly close’ to gage and b) being a larger woman, I tend to knit more floppy things or go up a size to begin with. Hmmm… sounds like I could do with this prize!

  109. I swatch for big projects most of the time, but I still find my gauge on a swatch is quite different than it is for a big sweater, for example. I guess that means I don’t swatch all the time because I don’t trust the results.

  110. 1. Just plain lazy 2. Don’t want to waste the yarn 3. Accessories don’t usually need swatching anyway. 4. Still just plain lazy.

  111. I don’t swatch when I think I will run short of yarn, which seems to be much of the time. I also don’t swatch when I’m in holiday gift knitting mode, which gets me in trouble on occasion (including this year!).

  112. I love to use yarn from independent dye gurus. It’s expensive to buy and I hate using the precious yardage for swatching. I do it anyway, but grudgingly and with a bad attitude.

  113. My only excuse is that I want to get on with the project. I have had to frog and switch to different needles a couple of times because I didn’t like the fabric. Somehow, it never occurred to me that a swatch would have prevented that. Duh!

  114. I don’t typically swatch because I am afraid of running out of yarn….but I really should because I think I would learn a lot from it.

    1. NOT swatching has caused me to run out of yarn on more than one occasion. I knit looser than gauge and used up more yarn on the pattern. I just figured the item did not have to have a certain fit; I like the fabric I’m getting, so why worry. I still often skip the swatch if I have plenty of yarn on hand.

  115. Hate to waste the yarn, and feel I might not have enough for finished project if I swatch the way you are supposed to.

  116. I start with a sleeve, which is kind of like a swatch, and I often end up ripping it out at least once. My biggest excuse is usually that I’d need to do the swatch in the round, and it’s too much of a pain.

  117. I usually don’t swatch because I want to get to my project right away. When I have swatched, I always forget (read: avoid) to check my gauge while knitting the actual garment resulting in a poorly fitting finished object. How lazy of me!

  118. I don’t swatch because it’s too confusing. Do I measure blocked or unblocked? Should I knit additional stitches and rows before measuring? I seems less stressful – at least initially – to just start knitting!

  119. Swatching always seems like a waste of time and yarn. Once I have the window of time to start a new project, I am ready to dive in and create something.

  120. I swatch for sweaters and large projects. But I find excuses not to for accessories – I want a quick project and swatching seems like it’s a frustrating hurdle to take before casting on. Though I recently kicked myself with a hat that I ended up ripping out and restarting and changing needle size on and STILL ending up with a size that wasn’t quite what I had in mind.

  121. I am transitioning from socks to sweaters and want to get it right from the get-go. If I had the opportunity to learn to love swatching from the outset, I think the ultimate results would be of lifetime benefit!

  122. I usually knit lace so gauge isn’t usually critical. If it’s a shawl that starts small and grows then I treat the first 20-30 rows as my swatch and decide if I like the feel of the fabric I’m getting. Doesn’t work on shawls from the border in though

  123. I don’t like to swatch because I hate wasting yarn that I might need for the project. And yes, when I have the itch to start a new project I want to start the project not a swatch! I usually regret that decision down the road.

  124. The only time I ever swatched…my sweater fit perfectly! If only I would take that lesson to heart! I’d love the opportunity to join the course. Thanks for hosting this giveaway!

  125. I sorta swatch. I swatch it, don’t cut it off, and frog it back so I can reuse the yarn. So that means I don’t wash it & block it. Or if I do, I sorta dunk it in water and squeeze it a bit, then leave it to dry… and am entirely unsurprised when it sproings back to how it started, which encourages me not to bother washing & blocking next time.

    When I don’t swatch, it’s because “Oh, I don’t really care if the gauge is a bit off for this project, it’s not fitted…”

  126. I don’t swatch as often as I should because I am not always confident in changing the needle size to accommodate what I learned in the swatch. Additionally, I don’t 2nd swatch on the new needle size because I am anxious to knit!

    Good luck with your class.

  127. I don’t swatch because I’m afraid to waste my yarn on this little square thing that will just sit around and collect dust! Also, I’m lazy and impatient. Ain’t nobody got time for that!

  128. I don’t swatch because I don’t want to waste my precious yarn!!! And why not start with a sleeve and after knitting a past the ribbing, check your gauge. Then I don’t have to swatch and already into the pattern if gauge is correct.

  129. It’s the stitching gremlins. I know you under stand what I mean. I sit down to swatch and I cast on to swatch. , but suddenly my swatch is a sweater front.! I can feel it when the gremlins posses me but I am powerless to stop them.

  130. I don’t swatch because I don’t want to risk running out of yarn for the project I’m doing. A lot of designers do not seem to include that in their calculations. Many times I’ve finished a project with barely enough left to cast off!

  131. As a newer knitter I don’t really understand the point of swatching. Especially for items like shawls. I will also admit I’m really impatient and would much rather be working on my item, then messing with a swatch.

  132. I actually will buy the yarn that goes with the pattern to avoid swatching. The reason: If I swatched and it was wrong, I don’t believe I would even know how to figure out how to fix it. I would have to rely on a friend to help me figure it out.

  133. If anything could make me loves swatching I would love it. I am also a reluctant swatcher. Mostly I just want to get started and not take the time to swatch.

  134. I usually skip swatching because I want to get started on my project right away! I know it’s important, especially for garments, so I’ve been knitting lots of scarves and shawls lately.

  135. My biggest excuse is “well, I usually knit on gauge, so l’ll go with what the pattern says, and it’ll probably be okay.” I’m usually just in such a hurry to start. But I’ve made more than one sweater with beautiful yarn that’s turned out either snugger than I’d like or I didn’t like the denseness of the fabric. So I know taking the time to swatch is best.

  136. I almost never swatch, I’m too eager to start the next project and I don’t want to waste any yarn. I would love to learn how to love to swatch 🙂

  137. Time. If it’s a larger project, I will knit a few rows in stockinette (I can never figure out how to count my gauge “in pattern”), and if I’m close, I go with it. I know I’d be happier with end results if I did a true swatch. If it’s a smaller project, I just fudge it, and if the item comes out too small (never too big), I figure it will fit SOMEone… I know I could learn a lot from this class. 🙂

  138. I barely have time to knit, so I usually skip the swatch, and head straight to the project. I guess I need to take another look at swatching!

  139. My best excuse is “I’m not sure I have enough yarn to waste on a swatch”. Second best excuse is “I’m always pretty close to gauge anyway”.

  140. I don’t swatch because I am too excited to start my project! I know, I know – I should swatch, but I never feel like I have enough time to knit as is so I just want to work on my project!

    What a great class idea! Thanks for the chance to win!

  141. I am TOO LAZY to swatch…there, I’ve said it!!! I cannot wait to get started on the project. I also feel that it is somewhat wasteful to use yarn for a swatch.
    This class is a fantastic idea!!!

  142. The biggest reason I don’t swatch is because it is so hard for me to get gauge…. and I am so excited to get started! Excited to see how fun swatching could be!

  143. I don’t swatch as I am in a hurry to start my project and think that everything I knit goes accordingly. Unfortunately I always pick a size that I normally wear in my clothing BUT when I knit it is is too big. I definitely want to start swatching. Also Love your yarn and thanks for the giveaway.

  144. I’m concerned that I will run out of yarn. But mostly, I am anxious to start the project and just don’t want to take the time!!

  145. I do swatch, but it may be a waste of time – because I only do the knitting part, not the washing part.

  146. I think I develop amnesia with every new project, totally forgetting the sweaters that didn’t fit, the hat that was sooooo tight or kept falling down over my eyes……

    I am always so excited to start the next thing. It’s all about the beginning for me.

  147. I’ve never swatched because I’ve never really made something that mattered it was just an animal or a blanket for myself. But now that I’m trying to do things that do matter like clothing I guess I’m going to have to stop being lazy!

  148. My number one reason for not swatching is my impatience!!! I just want to get my project going and I feel that swatching just keeps me from getting it done! I know that is a really dumb reason since swatching would keep me from having to frog a project because the gauge was off!

  149. I have never knit a swatch. Probably should since I am a bonafide beginner. Truth is, I’m not sure I would know what to do with the information a swatch would give me. Oh, I and did I mention that I am massively impatient? On a serious note… Why are people worried that they will run out of yarn if they swatch? Don’t you just frog the watch and use it to start your project?

  150. Laziness, and because I’ve had so much trouble with sizes, even with swatching, I tend to make things where size is not critical.

  151. The #1 reason I don’t swatch is for fear I will run out of yarn for my project. I normally do swatch, but I always keep that swatch handy in case I need to unravel it.

  152. For most of my projects I don’t need to swatch. For the projects where it does matter and for which I have made a swatch I usually find that I get a different result with the finished project. Would love to do it right so that my sweaters, hats etc. actually fit!

  153. My excuse for not swatching is that I already know that I’ll have to go down a needle size anyways, so why bother?

  154. I’m worried if I swatch I’ll run out of yarn for the actual project. That’s my story and I’m sticking with it.

  155. Running out of yarn is the primary reason for not swatching. But I realize I would learn a lot about different yarns, so I should…

  156. Well they have test knitters, and the pattern says use size 5 needles not size 4-8 whatever you get your swatch guage on.

  157. I only swatch if it’s an important knit to fit. I really don’t even know what I’m looking for in the swatch

  158. I swatch less than I should and I’m hesitant to swatch for a pair of lacy socks that I’m ready to cast on. However, I recently knit 2-pair-at-a-time(yes 4 socks) and the differences really made me think about swatching. I used 2 different yarns, a wool/nylon blend and a cotton/wool/nylon blend & 2 separate patterns by the same designer. What a difference! I cast on(on the same US2/2.75mm 40″/100cm circular) 72 Sts for the cotton blend and it was longer and narrower than the wool blend at 64 sts(same number of rows). I must say it was intriguing, side by side and in-my-face obvious, I need to swatch more. Help =)

  159. I will swatch for a sweater or something important but I really think its boring and i hate it. Also don’t really understand what I’m looking for when I swatch!

  160. Often I find that when I swatch, my gauge isn’t right, and I have to swatch again – and maybe again, and maybe… well, you get the idea. I know that’s the very reason I should swatch, but I hate the disappointment of not being able to dive right into the project.

    1. Oh I know exactly what you mean! Why postopone the excitement of a new project on the needles and do boring and unreliable stuff like swatching??

  161. I don’t swatch because I want to dive right in! Plus I mainly make socks and you don’t need to swatch for socks, right? 😉

  162. I swatch on occasion, but I hate to “waste” the yarn and end up unraveling it. I have never washed and blocked a swatch. Occasionally this has gotten me into trouble. I usually catch the problem before the project is too far gone and regret my impatience/laziness as I frog and begin again with a different endless size.

  163. 99% of the time the things I make are for no one in particular. But I did swatch for the cardi I am making for myself, its way too big to make an error in the sizing.

  164. My main reason?? Time? I am retired.. nope. I guess it’s really a combination of this sounds dumb but WHY? I taught myself how to knit, I don’t remember anything in the book about a swatch. So I guess this class would be a good thing for me, maybe my projects would look better?
    Thanks for the chance!!

  165. Why do I have to swatch something I wear around my neck? I win if it’s too big, and I adjust how I wear it if it’s too small!!! 😀

  166. There are 2 reasons why I don’t always swatch 1.Fright and 2. Don’t fully understand that is why I wold love this course to demystify the dreaded swatch

  167. Swatching is hard for me. My knitting time is so limited with 2 preschoolers so while it isn’t a waste of time it certainly feels that way a lot 🙂

  168. well i guess its a combination of lazyness, and thinking they are kind of tedious. and most of my projects have been in my opinion things where gauge are not important things like scarfs and want not. but i have done once or twice have done them i have attempted adult sweaters.

  169. I don’t swatch because knitting time is too precious to waste on something that is not going to be used. Or else, I’m concerned I don’t have enough yarn. Oh, and swatches lie.

  170. I might run out of yarn for the project if I use some on a swatch!

    Oh, and number 2:

    What will I do with all those swatches I can’t bear to throw away?

  171. Knitting swatches takes time. And yarn! I don’t like to waste either. So, my solution? Just don’t knit things where gauge is important! The truth is that I really would like to knit a sweater this year and we know what that means….SWATCH LIKE YOU MEAN IT! Would love for the random generator to pick me since Mel has project ideas to make from our swatches. I must say, I’m intrigued!

  172. I do swatch sometimes, but when I don’t it’s because I’m afraid I won’t have enough yarn left to finish the project. When I do swatch I don’t remove the swatch from the skein and unravel it when finished.

  173. I guess it’s the “regular” reason: too lazy, can’t be bothered, it’s probably okay anyway! Thanks for the chance to win!

  174. My main excuse for not swatching is…..dare I admit it……laziness! I do swatch but I try as hard as I can to not swatch. I would love to win Swatch Like You Mean It!

  175. My biggest excuse is time. When I start a project, I want to get STARTED. And I get antsy knitting the swatch. But I usually do make one, begrudgingly.

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