View Full Version : weight and/or gauge of vintage yarn?

04-01-2007, 08:53 PM
i found this pattern (http://www.vintage-knitting-patterns.com/support-files/ezine/ezine-babyshawl2.pdf)over in pattern central, and would love to do it for a friend who is pregnant. the yarn that it calls for is chadwick's red heart baby wool on size 8's, but doesn't give a gauge. is anyone familiar with this yarn? i tried yarndex but couldn't find it, and i googled it, and only found other patterns that use it. this particular pattern was published in 1945.

i'd like to use KP cotlin, which is 5.5 stitches to the inch on size 5-7's (i have yet to swatch it). i have 15 balls of it, and would like to get an idea of how big this will come out if i follow the pattern with my yarn, and ensure i'll have enough to finish it. can anyone help? thanks!

04-01-2007, 09:40 PM
i did some quick math, the lace edge calls for a co of 289 stiches. your shawl says its about 53" square. divide 289 by 53 and you get about 5.45 stitches to the inch. so cotlin at 5.5/inch would probably get you a slightly smaller shawl.

04-02-2007, 12:00 PM
jeanuis, thank you! i don't know why i didn't think of that. wait, yes, i do know why, hormones...ugh. anyways, that's fine if it's a little smaller as 53" seems a little big for baby. now do i have enough yarn? this is the question...

04-02-2007, 07:07 PM


These links may help as well. Jeanius is a genius tho :-o haha. I wouldn't have thought of that either.

04-02-2007, 08:17 PM
Baby Wool would be either fingering or sport weight yarn. Lace knitting is usually done with a needle that is two sizes larger than what the yarn usually calls for so my guess is that the yarn was probably a sport weight. Using a DK weight yarn the blanket will probably be larger than the original. However, you can choose to make the panels a smaller size if you wish.

04-02-2007, 09:30 PM
That is a beautiful blanket. Thanks for sharing. Be sure and posts pics. when you are done with it. I'd love to see it. :cheering:

04-03-2007, 11:56 AM
calamintha, it looks like you're right - the first link that humblestumble provided (thank you!) has a link to a list of discontinued yarns. it appears that the baby wool was a fingering weight yarn. my concern was in having to adjust the pattern, since that will take a fair amount of calculation, which i was hoping to not do :oops: . i'll swatch with the cotlin and see what i get, but i have a feeling it will become a much heavier fabric than the shawl was intended to be.

04-03-2007, 12:24 PM
i just had an epiphany!!! i think i will start with the border pieces and see how impossible it is to swatch, or how big it is once i really get going on it. since i'll be using the cotlin, it won't block or stretch very well, so by doing the border first, i'll be able to figure out exactly how big the center needs to be. and i'll be able to calculate how much yarn i'll need for each of the border pieces, and then how much i'll have left for the center. if need be, i could do the center in stockinette, to save some yarn, since garter uses more, right? or i could just remove one or two pattern repeats in the border to make that smaller, without horrible calculations!

i love it when things start making sense on new patterns! :cheering:

04-03-2007, 01:22 PM
i cant wait to see what you knit up! it will be so pretty!

07-06-2008, 09:54 AM
How did your project turn out? I also found this baby shawl pattern and attempted to knit it with a fingering yarn (Katia mississippi 3), but on 8 needles it was too big. I went down to a size 6, and the size is better, but it doesn't have that soft, springy look that picture has. Probably because the yarn is 60% cotton. It appears that the shawl will be much heavier than the one in the picture. I have stopped the project and am looking for different yarn to use. A size 8 needle (5mm) still seems large. I would love to know how your project turned out.