Sunday, July 6, 2008

VERY Belated Birthday Vest

Design: Professor Vest, by Elizabeth Morrison
Yarn: Black Water Abbey, 2 ply worsted, Chestnut
Needle: US #7
Started: March 25, 2008
Finished: May 16, 2008

Belated Professor Vest

There's a story behind why this is such a belated birthday gift. I actually started a different vest last year. Same pattern, same yarn, different color. A gorgeous sea green color. After laboring over that one for months, it turned out to be too big. In fact, it was so big it actually fits DH instead. Not that he's worn it more than once, but that's for another blog entry.

So, fortunately I had the Chestnut color of this wool. Which by the way, I love. Let me get back to the subject of the yarn later. For now, here's a shot of the first vest I made last year. Pretty color - Moss. For this version I used some vintage leather buttons I happened to have in my sewing basket. Very professorial if I do say so. I did make a teensy error on this version. For some reason the buttons are on the 'wrong' side for a man's version of the vest. It's one of those things that I really need to go back and correct. Because I would like to see this garment worn.

Professor Vest

Anyway, having made the vest once before, the second time was a cinch. The only reason it took as long as it did was all the other projects I was working at the same time. I finished knitting this up back in May. And then it sat around till last week when I finally hit M&J Trimming to pick up the right buttons. I found some natural horn buttons. They work perfectly with the Chestnut colorway.

Belated Professor Vest

RCP came by the house today to pick up the vest and it gave me the opportunity to take a few shots with him modeling the final product. He's really happy with it and I am, too.

The stitch pattern is called Broken Rib. It's very easy, and the result is quite manly. It should also be quite warm, with all those little yarn cells to keep the heat in.

Knitting for men is a real challenge. Most of them are pretty conservative and that can mean a bit boring. Fortunately, RCP takes pride in his clothes. He comes from Texas - his mother was a seamstress, his father a jeweler. He likes fine clothes. I am a bit surprised he actually likes this vest as it's a bit more "country rustic" than his usual style.

Belated Professor Vest

I love the color of this yarn. If you get it outside in natural light you can see red, gold, green all reflected in the main chestnut color. This stuff is fantastic. I think that's why RCP likes it. The yarn has depth. Character. It's made in Ireland. The color card I got when I ordered the yarn shows some gorgeous selections.

Belated Professor Vest

It may not feel the softest off the skein, but wool like this doesn't bother me too much, and it's not designed to be worn directly against the skin anyway. It's crisp, crunchy yarn with a good twist. Made in Ireland. It looks like it's made there! This is the yarn for a really sturdy Aran sweater. And someday, that's just what it will be. There are a few designs out there worth a try, like Na Craga, or anything else by Alice Starmore.

RCP looks quite handsome in his new vest. It fits perfectly! I am very pleased with the outcome of this belated gift. Some things are worth waiting for! The irony is, his birthday is just around the corner again, leaving me with a bit of a dilemma for what to knit for this year's gift!

Belated Professor Vest

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