Sunday, April 3, 2011

Girls Sweater Vest

When I was in Germany as a teenager, the Germans were surprised to see an American who could knit.  What’s more ~ I knit continental style! But what perhaps caused them most to wonder was that I needed a pattern to make a sweater.  Why, it says right on the yarn how many stitches to an inch!  You just figure out how big you want it, cast on the stitches and go.  I knit my sweater by a pattern, and I had a fancier sweater ~ but simple is good, and my German sister’s was nicer.

Recently when I needed to use some extra yarn, I decided to make a vest for my granddaughter.  I didn’t have a pattern handy, so I knit this up German style.  Only I wrote down what I did in case you prefer to have someone else do the figuring.  For other sizes, however, you are on your own.

Girl’s Striped Sweater Vest, size 6

Worsted weight yarn.  (I used Wool-Ease.)
Circular needles, sizes 8 and 10
8 st and 11 rows = 2”

With color A (green), CO 100 st.  Join ends, being careful not to twist. (This is the only part of knitting in the round that I don’t like.) Knit in K1 P1 ribbing for 2”.

Switch to larger needles.  Knit 2 rows.
Begin striping pattern (will be worked three times):
            6 rows color B (dark rose)
            2 rows color A
            4 rows color C (pink)
            2 rows color A
            6 rows color B
            6 rows color A

Work 9” in stockinette.
BO 2  K48  BO 2  K 48
Place 48 stitches for front on stitch holder.  (I skip this, and leave the stitches on my circular needle.)
Work back and forth in stockinette on back, dec 1 st. each side every right side row 3 times.  (Work right side decreases by slipping two stitches and knitting them together through the back.  Work left side decreases by knitting two together.)
Work even in striping pattern until armhole measures 6 ¾”.
Continuing with color A BO 8 st at the beginning of each of the next 2 rows.  Then BO 6 each of the following two rows.  Place 14 neck stitches on holder.

For front:
Begin with a purl row.  Work as for back, decreasing one stitch each end every right side row 3 times.
P 20 st, P2 tog, P20 st.
K 20 st, place on holder, K center stitch and place on safety pin or stitch holder. K 20 st for right side.
Working only on right side, dec one stitch at neck edge every right side row until 14 stitches remain.  Knit until armhole corresponds to back. (6 ¾”)
BO 8 at armhole edge.  Then BO 6.

Work right side to correspond to right.

Sew shoulder seams.  Pick up 29 stitches along left side of neck. Place marker. Pick up center stitch.  Pick up 29 st along right side of neck.  In K1 Pk ribbing, k across 14 neck stitches on holder and down the left side of neck. Knit the center stitch. K1 P1 to end of row.
Continue in ribbing, decreasing before marker and after center stitch every round.  Work 6 rounds. BO.

Pick up 72 st around armhole. K1 P1 ribbing around.  Work 6 rows. BO

Weave in loose ends.

Sew to vest with yarn. 


  1. I couldn't make a sweater without a pattern or with a pattern. You did so well on the vest, I'm sure it will look adorable. You'll have to beg for a picture to update the blog! :)

  2. The vest won't fit Ursula for a while ~ partly by design and partly not. It will be on display at the Bee Hive for a while (replacing a certain purple sweater.)

  3. your post made me laugh out loud: "so i just knit this up german style" !! and the vest is adorable. thanks for sharing!