Have you ever had the best, most original idea ever and then googled it only to find out that you're about the bazillionth person to think of it? This vest. It's a great idea, like I mean a really good idea. I believe that. It's SO easy to make, and cozy. It's essentially a blanket with arm holes in it. So, I really thought I was on the something. Genius level crochet design. Ok, maybe not "genius," but still. A great and original idea.
Spend some time on Google and you'll find out that there are actually a lot of variations of this vest online. Some crocheted, some knit, all looking nice and cozy. This is my version. I took colour inspiration from a gorgeous knit version found on Purl Soho, because the colour block on their Sideways Garter Vest is really something special. I just needed to figure out a way to make it into something I could crochet. I tried a bunch of different stitches, and finally chose to crochet this vest in the third loop of HDC stitches. I love this stitch because it looks really neat but also has such a cozy, soft, scrunchie drape. This completed vest feels so soft and snuggly, and falls really nicely too! I start the pattern with a row of foundation single crochet stitches to be able to manage a colour change in the foundation row. If you've never tried a foundation single crochet, don't be scared! This was actually my first time, and it's a lot easier (and more fun!) than I'd imagined it to be :)
I was a little giddy making this because I really love to be cozy. It's the middle of summer in Alberta, it's not cold by any stretch of the word, and I was going on and on about how cozy I was going to be, really excited. I was even starting to feel bad for my husband and son because I realized I was going to be so much cozier than them and offered to make more versions in their sizes. My husband actually stopped me at one point and said, "I'm glad that you're excited about it, but you should know that I don't feel the same way about "cozy" as you do." Noted. All the more cozy for me!
I decided to make one side on the front longer than the other so I could pull it across and fasten it closed with a shawl clip. (I really like my little feather shawl clip from The Irish Knitting Room on etsy) But it would be fairly easy to modify it to close with a button or to make both sides the same length and just have it drape down. I've included the pattern to make this vest in my size (I'm 5'4" and usually wear size medium) but it would be simple to modify by starting with shorter or longer rows, and adding or decreasing the number of rows to fit you. I hope you enjoy this one, stay cozy out there!
Medium Level 4 Yarn (in two colours)
Size 5 crochet hook
Start with the darker colour.
Row 1: FSC 70. Switch colours when pulling through the 70th stitch, but do not tie off. FSC 48 in the lighter colour. Turn.
Row 2: (wrong side) CH 2. HDC in the third loop (under the front loop) of the next stitch, and continued to work HDC's in the third loop of each HDC stitch of the lighter colour of the previous row. Carry the darker gray yarn up to pull through the last light gray stitch, and continue to work HDC's in the third loop to end of row. Turn.
Row 3: (right side) CH 2. HDC in the back loop only of each stitch, carrying the lighter gray yarn up to switch colours at the 70th dark gray stitch. Continue to HDC in the back loop only to end of row. Turn.
Rows 4 - 16: Repeat rows 2 & 3, working in the third loops on the wrong side and back loops on the right side.
Row 17: Repeat row 3, but tie off dark gray after colour change, HDC in back loop only to end as usual. Turn.
Row 18: CH 2. HDC 32 in the third loop. HDC through both loops of next stitch. FSC 15, switching to dark gray in the pull through of the 15th FSC. FSC 10 in dark gray. Skip 25 stitches, HDC in the third loop to end. Turn.
Rows 19 - 57: Repeat rows 3 and 2.
Row 58: Repeat row 2, but tie off light gray after colour change. Turn.
Row 59: CH 2. HDC 59 in the back loop only of each stitch. HDC through both loops on the next stitch. FSC 10, switching to light gray in the pull through of the 10th FSC. FSC 15 in light gray. Skip 25 stitches, HDC in the back loop to end. Turn.
Rows 60 - 89: Repeat rows 2 and 3.
Row 90: Repeat row 2, tie off both colours.
To Finish: I chose to single crochet along the bottom edge of the dark gray to give it a more defined shape and finished look, but left the top edge (light gray) as it is so it would have more stretch when it's folded over and wrapped around my shoulders.