Recipe for the Perfect Tension Swatch
Look at the tension stated in the pattern:
____ stitches x _____ rows using ________ size needles.
Using the correct needles, cast on twice that many stitches.
Work 6 rows in garter stitch – that is, knitting every row.
Right side: knit entire row.
Wrong side: k3, purl to last 3 stitches, k3.
Repeat these two rows until the main body portion measures 15 cm/6 inches.
Work 6 rows garter stitch – knitting every row.
Steam or launder the swatch according to the instructions on the yarn ball band.
And then measure it. This provides a swatch large enough to get a good, flat 10 cm/4 inches to measure in both length and width.