Two years ago, I made my grandfather a sweater vest for Christmas, and it was incredibly well-received. He refused to take it off for a week! This year, I wanted to make him another one. I chose a cotton-linen blend, because he's not all that heat-sensitive and I've caught him wearing sweater vests in really warm weather, so I want something that won't overheat him too badly. Because the yarn I chose had four color strands twisted together, I chose a simple pattern that would showcase the yarn.
I liked the design of the Cotton Neat Vest, but it is only written for one size and I couldn't get gauge without having a really loosely woven fabric. To make matters worse, it was more of a guideline than an actual pattern, and was really hard to understand. I ended up casting on 10 extra stitches, and fudging the numbers to make it work. By the time I was doing the neck and armholes, I was pretty much improvising. It was very frustrating to do so (I had to rip out the neck 3 times!), but by doing so, I got a finished object that I really like.
I would definitely not use the pattern again. I did way too much ripping out and reknitting. The yarn hurt my hands when I knit with it for too long because cotton doesn't have very much give, so I'm swearing off of cotton for awhile. I would use it again though; it works up so nicely!
Pattern: Cotton Neat Vest
Yarn: Elann Adara
Needles: US 7 (body) US6 (Neck and Armhole Edging)
The Verdict: I love the finished project, and I hope my grandfather will too. I won't be knitting this project again anytime soon, however!