This pattern grew out of disappointment. I was so tired of spinning beautiful, one of kind yarn and knitting it into a great pattern, only to put it on and find not-so-subtle horizontal stripes. I didn't think that was flattering.
I went on a quest for a simple flattering pattern knit side to side with great vertical lines. It had to have considerable shaping if it was going to fit. I just could not find it. So I designed it myself.
I learned by experience and later by study, that garments knit side to side tend to get shorter and wider over time. This vest is long and has zero ease at the bust. It can get wider and shorter and still fit great.
Anything my dear friend Judy made out of "Beast" roving turned out amazing. Beast roving was produced by Brown Sheep Yarn Company on an ancient carding machine. The machine finally gave out and Beast is no longer available. Judy gifted some Beast to me and I knew that is what I wanted this vest to be made from. Sadly I didn't have enough. So I gathered up all my bits of leftover black, grey, and white roving and set out to stretch my Beast roving. This vest is made from half Beast and half everything else. I used a DIY Yarn Hackle that I made following the Yarn Zombie's plans. It was super easy to make and cost about $10.
I divided the different wools I had into 4 even bits and put each bit into a pile. I had 4 piles of roughly the same mix of wools. I loaded the hackle and used a diz to pull the wool off of the hackle. It made a very even and not-too-mixed wool top that I loved. It was easy to spin.
MATERIALS Fiber: Wool leftovers 13[15, 16, 18, 19, 22, 23] ounces in shades of white, grey, and black combed together. 1340[1480, 1600, 1750, 1900, 2050, 2200] yards
Spinning Tool: Pipy Wendy Spinning Wheel handmade by Philip Poore in New Zealand with scotch tension attachment Hackle: made from dollar store hair picks and a 2x2 piece of wood. (Instructions for making one are here)
per inch: 17
Drafting method: long draw
Commercial Yarn Alternative Cascade 220; 220yds/100g ball]; color: 9465 Vashon Island Heather, 7[7, 8, 8, 9, 10, 10] skeins
Recommended needle size [always use a needle size that
gives you the gauge listed below --
every knitter's gauge is unique]
1 40-inch US #7/4.5mm circular needle
1 set US #7/4.5mm double-point needles (for armhole bands; optional)
20 sts and 30 rows = 4" in Ridge Pattern after blocking. Note: As this project is worked sideways, correct row gauge is crucial to an accurate fit.
PATTERN NOTES [Knitty's list of standard abbreviations and techniques can be found here.]
Pick up and work any wraps with wrapped sts as you pass them.
The provisional cast on method used in this pattern can be found here.
A note on fit: Due to the fact that this garment is knitted sideways, correct row gauge is crucial to the fit of this garment, though adjustments are easy to make by adding or subtracting rows where desired (at back neck, shoulder, or underarm). Check schematic for measurements before beginning.
If adjustments to the circumference of hem is desired, adjust number of short rows worked. Each 6-row repeat of short rows (1 set of short rows worked on front and back of garment) will add an extra .5 inches to the total hem circumference in comparison to the bust. If adjustments are made, be sure to make a note of it so that the Right Half can be worked the same.
Ridge Pattern with Shaping: Row 1 [RS]: Knit. Row 2 [Ridge Row]: Knit. Row 3: Knit. Row 4: Purl. Row 5: Knit to marker, sl m, w&t. Purl to end. Turn. Knit to 3 sts before second (shoulder) marker, k2tog, k1, sl m, k1, k2tog, knit to end of row. 2 sts dec'd. Row 6 [WS]: Purl to marker, sl m, w&t. Knit to end. Turn. Purl to end of row.
Rep Rows 1-6 for patt.
Ridge Pattern with Shaping (After Division): Note: Work each row across both sides of garment, using separate ball of yarn. Row 1 [RS]: Knit. Row 2 [Ridge Row]: Knit Row 3: Knit. Row 4: Purl. Row 5: Knit to marker, sl m, w&t. Purl to end. Turn. Knit to end of row. Row 6 [WS]: Purl to marker, sl m, w&t. Knit to end. Turn. Purl to end of row.
Rep Rows 1-6 for patt.
Starting at center back and with circular needle, provisionally cast on 115[118, 120, 120, 123, 125, 128] sts.
Beg with Row 1[5, 4, 3, 4, 2, 6] of patt, work 12[14, 15, 16, 21, 23, 25] rows in Ridge Pattern, ending after Row 6.
Pm for shoulder at beg of next row and provisionally cast on 115[118, 120, 120, 123, 125, 128] sts for Left Front at beg of row. Place one removable marker after first 50 sts of row and another marker before last 50 sts of row.
**Beg with Row 1 of patt, work 34 [34, 38, 38, 38, 42, 44] rows in Ridge Pattern with Shaping over all sts, ending after Row 4[4, 2, 2, 2, 6, 2] of patt. 220[226, 228, 228, 234, 236, 242] sts.
Sizes XS and S Only: Dividing Row -- Row 5 of Ridge Pattern [RS]: Knit to first marker, sl m, w&t. Purl to end. Knit to 35[37, -, -, -, -, -] sts before shoulder marker, place next 70[74, -, -, -, -, -] sts on waste yarn, join another ball of yarn and knit to end of row.
Sizes M, L, 1X, 2X and 3X Only: Dividing Row [RS]: Work Row -[-, 3, 3, 3, 1, 3] of Ridge Pattern with Shaping to -[-, 40, 43, 45, 48, 51] sts before shoulder marker. Place -[-, 80, 86, 90, 96, 102] sts on waste yarn. Add another ball of yarn and patt to end of row.
75[76, 74, 71, 72, 70, 70] sts rem for each side of row. Note: Continue to work each side separately at the same time using separate balls of yarn.
Work 8[13, 15, 21, 24, 26, 30] rows more in Ridge Pattern with Shaping (After Dividing Row,no decreases worked), removing markers on last row. Place rem sts on waste yarn.
Remove waste yarn from 115[118, 120, 120, 123, 125, 128] original cast on sts at center back and place these sts on circ needle. Join yarn with RS[RS, WS, RS, WS, WS, WS] facing and, beg with Row 1[5, 4, 3, 4, 2, 6] of patt, work 11[13, 14, 15, 20, 22, 24] rows in Ridge Pattern, ending after Row 5.
Pm for shoulder at beg of next row and provisionally cast on 115[118, 120, 120, 123, 125, 128] sts for Right Front at beg of row. Place one removable marker after first 50 sts of row and another marker before last 50 sts of row.
Work Row 6 of patt, then cont as for Left Half from ** to end.
Join held sts for each side together using three-needle bind off.
With circ needle and RS facing, pick up and knit 200[230, 265, 285, 325, 355, 390] sts (approx. 2 sts for every 3 rows) across the hem. Knit 6 rows.
BO very loosely.
With circ needle and RS facing, pick up and knit 3 sts from edge of bottom band on Right Front. Remove waste yarn from Right Front sts and place on needle. Knit across these sts. Pick up and knit 15[18, 20, 23, 28, 30, 33] sts across the back neck. Remove waste yarn from Left Front sts and place on needle. Knit across these sts. Pick up and knit 3 sts from edge of bottom band. 251[260, 266, 269, 280, 286, 295] sts.
Work in garter stitch (knit every row) until front band measures 1.5[1.75, 2, 2.25, 2.75, 3, 3.25] inches, unstretched. Bind off in Jeny's Suprisingly Stretchy Bind Off.
With dpns or circ needle (using Magic Loop method), pick up and knit 10[18, 20, 28, 33, 35, 40] sts (approx. 2 sts for every 3 rows) across underarm, pm, then remove waste yarn from 70[74, 80, 86, 90, 96, 102] held sts, place on needle and knit across these sts. Join to work in the rnd and pm for beg of rnd. 80[92, 100, 114, 123, 131, 142] sts. Rnd 1: Knit. Rnd 2: Purl. Rnd 3: Knit to marker decreasing 4[6, 6, 6, 6, 6, 6] sts evenly across these sts, sl m, knit to end. 4[6, 6, 6, 6, 6, 6] sts dec'd. Rnd 4: Purl.
Rep Rnds 3-4 once more. 72[80, 88, 102, 111, 119, 130] sts.
Bind off loosely.
Weave in ends and block to finished measurements, smoothing out short rows to prevent bunching.
ABOUT THE DESIGNER
Lyn Hale lives and knits in rural Idaho. She keeps chickens and bees. By day, she is a high school secretary. At night she is a spinner and knitter.