Swatching is crucial for a good result, I know.. And when you knit in the round, you should always swatch in the round.
Which I did before I made the first Phantasy hat. But still, the swatch gauge was very different from the hat gauge. The hat turned out to small for me, so I had to give it away and to fit my big head.
A friend was the happy receiver. She recently had birthday, and I made her a purse from the swatch. First, I meant to line the purse, because of all the floats, but then I saw some felted purses in the shop. And after a couple of rounds in the washing machine (first at 40 degrees, which resulted in surprisingly little felting, then at 60), there was no need for lining.