Designing with gauge in mind

As you begin to knit projects, you may find yourself imagining sweaters and hats you'd like to make but can't find a pattern for. Making your own pattern for a project isn't all that difficult. No matter how fancy the pattern stitch or shaping, how large or small the project, it all comes down to stitches and inches. Figure out your gauge on the yarn and needles you want to use, and then determine the dimensions of the finished project.

To determine the number of stitches to cast on for a project you're imagining, work the formula for determining gauge in reverse. Decide how wide you want your piece to be, and then multiply that number by your gauge. For example, if you're imagining a scarf in one of the patterns in Chapter 5 or Appendix A, make a gauge swatch. If your gauge is 5 stitches to the inch and you want your scarf to be 7 inches wide, cast on 35 stitches and start knitting.

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