First of all, it doesn't feel like yarn. It's more like smooth twine. Or rough string. I had been told of this fact about linen before I got the yarn, but I didn't think it was really that bad. But I was wrong, it is that bad. It hurts. After knitting with the linen for awhile, my fingers feel raw. Not a pleasant knitting experience at all.
Secondly, knitting gauge swatches is tricky because you can't know your gauge until after you wash and dry your swatches. Good thing that I had lots of laundry. I could knit a swatch, throw it in with a load, and measure it. Then, repeat the process. Look at these before and after photos (in a drop-stitch pattern):
Before: 7.5 inches wide, 4.5 inches tall.
After: 5.75 inches wide, 4.5 inches tall.
Amazing! Amazing that it shrunk so much width-wise but didn't shrink at all length-wise. And also an amazing transformation in texture. Burlap bag before and cottony soft after. I don't know if will ever knit with