Last year I cast on for a lovely sweater pattern named Cassis by Thea Colman. A swatch was knitted first to make sure that gauge was obtained. Everything was perfect. Many weeks were spent working on this project and it actually fit fresh off the needles!
But then it was soaked and blocked. That’s when the problems began. It grew and grew and grew. Over 10 inches in width!
Turns out that you should always block your swatch. And, it also turns out that I had a knitting problem- too loose knitting leaves sagging ladders. When the knitting hits the water, the weight of it all pulls on the sagging ladders and that extra yarn is seen in the extra width of the knitting.
I’ve started putting a piece of medical tape over my index finger so I can tighten up my tension without the yarn digging into my finger and burning it. It’s made a huge difference in the fabric I produce. My sensitive index finger must be the reason I’ve kept my tension so lax in the past. At least the problem has been identified and remedied after all these years.