The Art of Knitting a Cowichan Vest - Part III

Parts I and II of this series are available here and here.

This has been a long, and somewhat painful process. What was originally supposed to only take a total of four weeks to complete, has now taken 6 (and counting).

There have been more than a few issues with this vest, including:

  1. Sizing – Because I decided to lengthen the vest to fit around my hips, I didn’t take into account that this would require a pattern adjustment to allow for extra room around the hips. So now the vest is just a wee bit too small …
  2. Stitch markers – Surprisingly, this was the first time I successfully used them! Although at first they appeared to be deceptively simple, I did manage to knit through a marker and not realize it until several rows afterwards, and therefore had to frog several rows of knitting.
  3. Collar  – I should have made the collar much longer than I did, and only realized this after it had been meticulously sewn onto the back.
  4. Sewing – I don’t think I’ve ever been more frustrated as I was when I was trying to sew the collar onto the vest. Each and every single time I managed to thread the very thick wool through the needle and then pull it through the two pieces the wool would just fall apart! I managed to get through it, and it was only afterwards that I realized, after a conversation with my mother, that you need to twist the yarn for it to have any strength. When I was knitting, the yarn twisted naturally, so I didn’t realize this very important fact until afterwards.

There have also been some successes! Such as:

  1. Intarsia – This turned out to be much easier than I expected and I managed to find a cute animal pattern off of a Ravelry mitten pattern (can’t remember which one) for the design. I love the way it turned out!
  2. Three needle bind off – Although this was my first time attempting what I was expecting to be extremely tricky, it wasn’t. At all. If you know how to bind off with two needles, you’ll be able to bind off fine with three! Here is a link to the tutorial from Stitch Diva that I used.

Because this Cowichan Vest is part of my holiday knitting for someone on my gift list that just happens to read this blog, I’ve decided to not post any pictures until after the 25th!

But I couldn’t resist adding in a few pics of beautiful Cowichan vests that I would love to knit in the future.

Such as this one:


And this one (pattern by Sylvia Olsen):


And last but not least, this one (Okay, so maybe it’s a poncho and not a vest, but here’s another gorgeous pattern from Sylvia Olsen!):


I didn’t realize this until taking a closer look, but there is an interesting connection between the last two patterns by Sylvia Olsen and my very own Cowichan Vest! Sylvia runs a knitting shop in Victoria, BC called Salish Fusion, who only use Canadian Wool from Custom Woolen Mills in Carstair, Alberta! Which might I remind you is the exact same wool I used for my Cowichan Vest sweater (see blog post for details). It’s a small knitting world out there. Happy Monday everyone!