Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Parade of Christmas FOs - Part Two

Okay! The second large Christmas gift that I knit this year was a vest for my dad, which I had been meaning to knit for a couple of years. I wanted to knit it last year but ended up making socks instead because I hadn't found a good vest pattern. The year before I made felted clogs. You'd think finding a simple men's vest pattern would be easy, but apparently not. I apologize to my dad for these photos, which I took candidly while he was showing Dave around his workplace, Organ Supply Industries. So you know, they make pipe organs and parts, not livers and kidneys. It's a really cool place and I always like visiting. Big pipes, sheets of metal for making pipes, fancy woodworking, etc.
Project Stats: Dad's Vest
Pattern: Based on the Argyle Vest from Knitting Classic Style, obviously without the argyles and with a different bottom edging. Raveled here.
Yarn: Jo Sharp Silkroad DK Tweed, in Cedar, about 6 skeins. Yarn purchased at Acorn Street in 2005(!) - note use of stash...
Needles: Clover bamboo circulars, size 5 (ribbing) and 6 (body).
Time to knit: September 27-December 16, 2008. There was a delay there while I hunted down appropriate needles for the armhole ribbing and mustered up the courage to pick up all those stitches.
Modifications: Oh, lord, where to begin. Obviously, no argyling. I did think about that, and I have this yarn in a different color as well, but I wasn't really sure about my dad's feelings on argyle. I also knit ribbing at the bottom instead of doing a sewn-under hem. More on that later. And, I converted this to the round until I had to split for the armholes/v-neck, which made the whole thing go much faster. As I've mentioned, I don't like seaming. I did do a faux seam with a line of purl stitches up the sides. I'm hopeful that this yarn has enough structure that it's not going to stretch ridiculously without seams. Oh, and I did shortrows and a three-needle bindoff for the shoulder shaping/seaming instead of doing stepped bind-offs. Why patterns don't use shortrows for this I really don't understand. SO easy, SO neat, and SO much easier to seam. Do they think shortrows are too hard? They're really not.
Impressions: First off, I love this yarn. I bought it quite awhile ago and have enough for a sweater for myself in another color and probably a vest for myself left in this color. So, it's good that I like it. I'm a big fan of tweeds, which is clear looking through my stash but maybe not so obvious when looking at my projects because I'm keeping it for myself and most of what I seem to finish are gifts. I had a good time knitting this, I'm a big fan of large things knit in the round, no purling, just round and round. That said, I think this came out a bit big for my dad. I measured one of his vests the last time I was at home so I'd have something to go off of, and this is actually not that different in size, but somehow it seems really baggy. Part of it is the ribbing at the bottom, which doesn't pull in like I was expecting/hoping. That's what my dad is used to, so this is a bit more casual than what he usually wears to work. It's also a bit big in the back - definitely a comfort vest as opposed to a form-fitting dressy one. But, I'm hoping he'll get some use out of it!

While I'm on a roll with this, I also made Anne-Marie a scarf:

Project Stats: Juliet Scarf for Anne-Marie

Pattern: Juliet, from Knitting Little Luxuries. Raveled here.

Yarn: Elsebeth Lavold Angora, cherry red, about 3.5 skeins.

Needles: Size 9 Clover bamboo.

Time to knit: October 7-November 23, 2008.

Modifications: None aside from using bigger yarn and bigger needles than the pattern suggested.

Impressions: This was a nice knit, although it's impossible to photograph. That's not its fault of course, it's my fault for using red fuzzy yarn. My camera doesn't do well with either, so this is a double-whammy of photographic misery. Neither of the photos is really an accurate representation of the color. I used bigger yarn because Anne-Marie moved back to the great white north this fall, and it's cold there, and I figured something warm would be more appropriate than something dainty. I'd been meaning to use this yarn for her for some time, so I was glad to find a pattern that suited it. As for the pattern itself, I absolutely couldn't remember it, even by the end, which was frustrating. Not that it was hard, the lace panel on the left just wasn't intuitive for me.

Next, up, the Waves of Grain stole!


Anne-Marie said...

Thanks Emily, I love the scarf!
It's been so cold here that I've been wearing the other scarf you made me a lot (the silk garden woven scarf), because woven stitch is much warmer than lace in -25C (-15F). And the colors look great with my new down coat, which is a brownish olive green (or a olivish brown?) kind of khaki color. Anyway, as soon as it warms up a tad, I'll be wearing the red scarf a LOT! As you know, I won't have any trouble finding a hat or gloves to match... :)
Thanks again!

p.s. I'll try to take pictures with my camera. Maybe I'll have better luck... but fuzzy red is almost as hard to photograph as fuzzy black...

Anonymous said...


Your dad DOES wear the vest. I do intend to wash it (cold and gentle cycle) to shrink it a tad. I will measure it first and be very careful.
love, mom