I only read a few blogs now that I am out of school, but one of the blogs I read is Fringe Association run by Karen Templar. It is an interesting bite-by-bite blog with smaller blog posts on a daily cycle, but one of the recent posts got me thinking. What gauge are you?
It is safe to say that I enjoy all yarn, but there is one size of yarn that I consistently knit with on a near daily basis. It is also the yarn weight that I would choose to knit if I could only knit with one yarn for the rest of my life. It is practical enough for smaller items and held double it would serve well for quicker garments and items. If I got really daring, I could even hold it triple for quick bulky knits. If you haven’t guessed it by now, the weight of yarn that is my favorite (and that suits my personality type the best) is fingering weight yarn.
I love working with the smaller, finer gauges because the fabric you can produce just feels better for me. I like smaller sweaters most of the time and I am helplessly addicted to sock knitting (not to mention sock yarns). There was a time where I couldn’t imagine working with any needle size smaller than a US 6/4.0mm, but those days are long behind me. Now, even the petite US 2/3.0mm feel chunky in my fingers and allow for “speedy knitting” compared to my beloved US 1/2.5mm needles.
On top of that, working at a smaller gauge means that I can fit it more details for a piece. Ruffles work better with finer yarn because they can appear more delicate compared to the big chunky ruffles knit in worsted weight or bulky yarn. Cables stand out nicely in bigger ropes, but they can be downsized easily to delicate braids of texture. Then there is the balance between airy and structure that lace fights with the bigger needles and often turns to smaller needles. Not to mention the fine work of traditional Latvian mittens. So, while it might be fun to go grab the super bulky yarns and I might have dreams of knitting a blanket at a whopping 2 stitches per inch, fine gauge knitting is where my heart truly lies.
What about you? What gauge are you?