Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Swatch and Cast-On Calculator

Swatch and Cast On Calculator for Knitting (needles or loom)

Swatching for Gauge.  Three words we don't like to hear.

Have you read or heard that you need to make a swatch? Or check your gauge? 
Don't be scared.  

Yes, you will need to knit up a swatch in the yarn you intend to use with the tool (needle or loom) you intend for your project in the main stitch, but to find your gauge from there takes a few simple calculations.  If you simply want to find how many stitches you need for a panel, or even a small section to make a feature in your knitting (say a special stitch or even a 6" bound off slit for a strap to fit through), you will need to know how many stitches to work, bind off or even cast on.  

Below you will find help for that as well as how many rows to get the desired length!  If you have the "stitches per inch" or "rows per inch" from an existing pattern, you can compare those numbers to your numbers and calculate the difference you need. Then add or subtract stitches to achieve the same sizing or also the same as "obtain(ing) gauge".

Let's get started!  Use the notes and illustrations below to measure your swatch and calculate.  The first examples contain numbers to help you practice.  We encourage you to use the formula spelled out at the bottom, along with the example numbers in the example figures, to test our answers.  Below the examples are cleared out boxes for you to use for your own swatch measurements. 

Please note that directions below are written for our Phone and Tablet app.  We thought best to provide a blog to help others with what we already had. If you would like to download and use the app for your convenience please click here.  It is a free iOS app.  At the bottom of this post is a video showing how to use the app and this calculator.  Should you not have an iOS device you are welcome to print this blog for personal use to use as a guide. It would also be a nice paper to keep as a reference for your projects or a swatch reference for your tools (needles and looms).  We would recommend writing at the top the yarn, tool, stitch and project for your reference. Note that gauge can change slightly with your own mood and tension as well as from yarn to yarn even on the same tools.

**(A note for our metric friendly international users.  The calculations will work the same, just change inches to suit your needs.  Its the ratio that's important).**

For the Cast-On Calculations: 

First make a swatch using the selected project yarn of about 5 inches by 5 inches or 6x6. In making the swatch use the same needles or loom that you intend to use in making the project.

Then measure about a 4 inch by 4 inch area on the swatch. A smaller size measurement may be made. However, the estimate provided by the calculator will be more accurate as the measured area increases. 

Enter in the number of stitches counted in the measurement. Then enter the width measured when you counted the stitches.

Now for first project requirement entry: 
Enter the desired width or circumference of your project and for the calculated estimate press: 'Stitches to Cast-On ->'. If width is a circumference for a snug fit, an adjustment to the number to enter may be needed. For example, for socks measure arround the widest part of foot snugly and substract 1/2 inch then enter this for the desired width. 

Cast-On Formula used: 
Swatch is S stitches and measures W wide. The stitches per inch is S/W and desired width is dW. The Stitches to Cast-On = (dW x S/W). 

Now for the Rows Calculations: 
Measure the swatch number of rows and enter the number of rows and the measured length. Then enter the desired length of project and press 'Rows needed are->'. 

Formula for rows needed = (dL x R/L) where dL is desired length, R is number of measured rows and L is length measured.

We hope this has helped you today and will be used as a reference. Please bookmark and share this post!

Kristen Mangus
©2014 GoodKnit Kisses

For an electronic/ usable version of this calculator please download the iOS device only app GoodKnit. We apologize for any inconvenience if you do not own one of these devices. For personal use only, We (GoodKnit Kisses) give permission to print out these directions in whole. Please do not make multiple copies to distribute. Downloadable PDF copies can be made available upon request by GoodKnit Kisses for large groups or individuals if needed. Please submit request to with the Subject line "PDFGauge  Calculator".

Calculations are an estimate of your desired project results. GoodKnitKisses and Sagafuse will not be held responsible for any losses occurred using this application. 

also called: swatching, knit swatch, loom knit swatch, check you gauge, make a swatch

also called: swatching, knit swatch, loom knit swatch, check you gauge, make a swatch

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Picot Triangle Shawl Pattern

Picot Triangle Shawl 

by Kristen Mangus
GoodKnit Kisses

June 27, 2013

Triangle design shawl using wedge technique inspired by Hexagon blanket by Charity Windham. Charity and I talked about combining her wedge and my picots for a frilly garter ridge reversible shawl.  This shawl is a generous size for larger sizes up to 76" wide from end to end! Cast on Edge is 53" and can be made smaller for smaller sizing needs.

Stitch gauge: 4 sts per inch x 8 rows per inch in garter stitch

Loom: 7/16" gauge loom to be single knit with at least 168 pegs. Loom used in sample Knitting Board 28" with peg extenders.

Alternate loom(s): Kiss Looms can adjust to appropriate guage. Be sure to swatch. Use Kiss Fine Gauge Fixed 2; set up with two 83 peg long sides and two 7 peg ends. Use 165 pegs (loom will be 180 pegs). For Martha Stewart (MS loom) use two kits; set up with four 36 peg straights, two 12 peg medium straights, and four 6 peg corners with pegs in all holes for 3/8" gauge. Cast on 189 pegs (192 pegs on loom).

Yarn: 800 yards medium weight (4) Red Heart Boutique Unforgettable color Petunia.  3 balls used in sample. 9.85 oz/280 grams finished weight.

Loom Along Video:

EW - Ewrap
P - Purl
HS - Half Stitch
SL - Slip (skip first stitch)
st - Stitch
CO - Cast On
BO - Bind Off

Cast on: Picot CO 165 pegs. (starting on left working to right if right handed, Place removable Stich Marker on peg 1)

Row 1: SL 1, P to marker (all odd rows will repeat this way.)
Row 2: HS 1 at marked peg & move marker 1 peg to right (do NOT work HS st), EW to peg 165, Cable CO 3, BO 3 to form picot (See notes below on details for Cable CO and BO). I like to have 3 st markers on pegs 166-168 to show where picots need to be added on even numbered rows. For less picots on edging only, add picots every 4th row. As the pattern reads, this edge will be fuller than the cast on picots to give it a ruffled look when draped.

Repeat Rows 1 & 2 until last HS is at peg 164 & ending on row Row 2. This row will be HS 1, EW 1.

Begin Picot Bind Off*.
*This is an alternate to my standard picot bind off just for this pattern.
**Cable CO 3, BO 4 (** rep between **,** til one st left on loom, EW 1 cut tail and pull through) See video at minute 21:14; it should start there.

Weave in both tails into project.  If using color changing yarn be sure to weave like colored tails to closest color.

Blocking may be needed due to tension and eveness of such a large project. Do NOT steam block acrylic or it will "kill" it! Block with a light washing and let dry pinned on blocking board if needed. See bottom of pattern on Mitered Square Lovey for wet blocking instructions.

Notes on HS
Unlike an EW (where the working yarn is wrapped from the back between the next peg and around the front of the  desired stitch/peg to the back) the HS wraps to the front between the previous peg to the front of the desired stitch/peg then between the next stich (peg).

Cable CO Notes. 
Refer to this video for visual instructions.

Non-Picot shawl option: Cable Cast on 165 stitches and continue in main pattern.  Do not add edge picots.  Bind off in Stretchy Bind or a very loose Basic Bind off using the E-wrap stitch for knit stitches.  Do not pull tight.

Happy Looming!!

Copyright 2013, 2014 GoodKnit Kisses, Kristen Mangus.  Pattern is for personal use only.  Do not reproduce pattern in part or whole as written.  Items may be made for personal use. Contact Kristen Mangus if you are a crafter selling individually and Kristen will give permission.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Picot Layette Pattern

Hello everyone!  This month is a Facebook Loom Along for the Picot Layette set.

Loom knit the whole set or just what you need.  The Set: A Picot Lovey (mitered square with picot optional add-on edge), Picot Booties, and a Picot Bonnet.

The set is girl centered but there are alternate to tweak for a boy or more unisex.

These patterns are written out in separate blogs and have a few video references.  There are no full video loom alongs at this point.  I'm finding my full time job and home life has hindered making one.  However, I challenge you to stretch yourself if you find you rely on full loom along videos too much.  The technique visas help demonstrate the techniques spelled out in the patterns.  This blog is a quick reference to all of the patterns in the layette set.

The set was conceived by me and I partnered together with Charity, to design a mitered square that will work well for you. You can actually do this on any loom and with more stitches. This particular pattern was created to go with my Picot Layette set and was inspired by the new sock loom 2 from Authentic Knitting Board. I was privileged to get an advance preview of the loom and got so excited that I created 3 new patterns.

If you are familiar with Charity Windham's Hexagon baby blanket you will be able to make the mitered square in no time. The video for the Hexagon will help you understand the principle

Here are the pattern links below. I might create PDFs individually on Ravelry for convenience to have on your mobile device or to print off for personal use.  Enjoy!

(Originally written June 11th, 2013)

Picot Bonnet

Best for girls; for boys or unisex substitute bind off for stretchy bind off.

Picot BOOties (sock booties for baby)

Best for girls; for boys or unisex substitute cast on for ribbed cast on or a double ewrap.

Picot Lovey (small blanket that's perfect for a carrier)

Best for girls; for boys or unisex do not add on the picot edging.

Happy Looming!!

Kristen Mangus
GoodKnit Kisses

Search This Blog

My Blog List