Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Dad's Very Classy Vest

Pattern: My own, based heavily on the Rib and Cable Vest from Jo Sharp 3
Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca in 4204 (Buckwheat)
Needles: US 2 and US 3
Time Elapsed: One month, plus one week's sulking time and a few days extra to redo the neckline and reblock.

This was my NaKniSweMo project this year, and I'm proud to say that I finished it in the month, although there were some unforseen design circumstances that caused it to linger on a bit. I have made this exactly to my dad's specifications, so I'm hoping against hope that it fits like he wants it to. I'll have to wait until Christmas morning to find out.....

My process was this: After my dad picked the pattern, I measured him to within an inch of his life, and then I measured a favorite vest of his to within an inch of its life. I spent some quality time online researching yarns, since the Jo Sharp Alpaca Silk Georgette was WAY out of my price range. I settled on Berroco Ultra Alpaca Light as more cost effective alternative in a similar color to the one shown in the magazine, which my dad liked. The resulting fabric is a less formal than the Georgette, which has the silky sheen, but I don't think this will be a problem.

Then I swatched, washed, and blocked. And spent some quality time with a caculator to get some basic numbers together. This vest differs from the Jo Sharp in size (it's a good few inches bigger than the biggest size), shaping (the original was straight from the waist up), and neck treatment (original has a round neck).

You can see in this pic that this is a very fitted vest, which my dad asked for specifically. My dad is not a portly individual and his chest and waist measurements differ by almost 10 inches. I added zero ease to the waist, but there is approximately 4-5 inches of negative ease in the chest. As this is a ribbed vest, I don't think this will be a problem.

The first time I knitted this, the neck came out too small to fit over my head, much less my dad's with a shirt and tie. So I had to rip out the edgings and shoulder seams. I added about 2 inches in overall length to the armholes as the armholes were also a bit small with the ribbing added on. The neck and armholes look better now.

I'm really nervous about this knit. I really really hope that it fits the way my dad wants and that I don't have to do any more surgery on it. Of course, I can fix whatever's not right, but I'd prefer to move on to knitting for myself after the holidays..... Garter Love here I come!