I’ve been knitting for about three years now so I thought it was about time I started to venture out into items other than fingerless mittens, socks, scarfs and shawls. Last year I made myself a cardigan (which I wore whilst on holiday), but the Viggo Vest was my first project to gift to someone that needed to be a certain size.
One of my friends had her first baby earlier this year and I really wanted to make something for them. I started out with a plan to make a baby blanket, but the yarn I had in mind was too thick and dark and despite hours of plotting, planning, and watching, it just wasn’t working. Fortunately another lovely knitting friend came to my rescue and sent some leftover yarn from the item she had made for the same baby. It was some lovely Rowan Pure Wool 4 ply in two coordinating shades so I decided to ditch the blanket idea and make a striped vest. I choose the Viggo Vest pattern, partly because of this adorable photo – I mean who could resist?!
Adorable photo from Viggo Vest pattern
So, I got myself a smaller circular needle so that I could work in the round in the regular way rather than in magic loop as I normally do. I set to work and soon realised the pattern wasn’t quite as straight forward as I’d thought. Firstly, it’s striped and as I learned with my Nemo mittens that means I need to think about jogless stripes. It was a little tricky with this pattern because the stripes were only two rows deep, so I had to do a bit of research into how best to tackle this. In the end I settled with the ‘tug and twist’ method. Then, the pattern got a bit complicated. Well, not complicated, but just new to me. I had to do the shaping by casting off some stitches which got a little fiddly, and I had to pick up stitches to knit on the top ribbing sections.
Starting to cast off to shape for the sleeves
Then came the buttons. In reality not a difficult thing at all, but in my head it was. I didn’t have any buttons that looked right so I scoured my local haberdasheries until I found some. They’re a little bigger than what I was thinking of, but I struggled to find something that suited the colours and the style of the vest so I decided to make slightly larger button holes and got with bigger buttons. I thought it was going to be so complicated and put it off for quite a while, but one weekend I took the plunge… and realised that actually it was incredibly simple!
Buttons! It was a little out of shape so needed blocking, and I was pleasantly surprised at how much that evened it all out.
Viggo vest before blocking
Viggo vest after blocking
I bundled it up and sent it off, hoping and praying that it would fit the recipient. It had taken me a lot longer to make than I thought it would and of course in the meantime the recipient had been growing! Fortunately though, it fit, and the recipient’s Mum kindly shared a photo of him wearing it. Isn’t he adorable?
The vest being beautifully modelled
I’ve definitely conquered my fear of fitted clothes (well, for babies anyway!) so won’t be so afraid of similar patterns in the future. I’ll just need to start them earlier!