This project is turning into one of those Projects from Hell. I told you all the story of trying to order the yarn. Well, I have all the yarn. What I don't have is gauge.
Plan A: The project started out to be Vivian, from the Twist Collective. A lovely hoodie that I may try again, but not in a bulky yarn. Worsted, perhaps.
I knew I was in trouble when I checked the ballband recommendation - a size 10.5 needle is to give me 13.5 stitches per 4 inches. Just peachy, except that the gauge claimed by the pattern is 17 stitches per 4 inches on a size 8 needle. Unfortunately, since I tend to be a loose knitter, I need to go down to a size 4 needle to make gauge, and I don't think so.
Plan B: A nice plain hoodie, same yarn. Gauge called for here is 13 stitches per four inches on a size 10.5 needle. Much more doable... almost.
So far I have achieved the following:
- 14.5 stitches per four inches on a bamboo size 8. Fabric adjudged too stiff.
- 14 stitches per four inches on an Addi size 8. Fabric adjudged better but still a bit stiff.
- 11 stiches per four inches on an Addi size 9. Fabric adjudged flimsy.
- Despite repeated checking, I don't appear to have a bamboo size 9 to try.
I'm still debating with myself about buying a bamboo size 9 - I don't often knit with size 8s and 9s, despite the fact that I do own the preceding list of needles.* If going from bamboo to Addi at size 8 gains me .5 stitches per four inches, will doing the same at size 9 get me from 11 to 13, or at least 12? Logic would say probably not.
So - do I spring for another needle that may or may not help, or just go with the Addi size 8 and make the adjustments which I have already calculated? Does anyone know if Addi's come in size 8.5?
Actually, I've taken the only sensible way out: I cast on for a completely different project, for which gauge matters not a whit.
*Side note: I have an appalling number of large sizes - why on earth do I own sizes 13, 15 and 17 circular bamboo needles? When did I buy them and what was I going to do with them?