Thursday, December 30, 2021

Crochet Granny Square Vest

Not much sewing going on these days for me! Soon, soon, I hope... but plenty of other crafts in the meantime.

My sewing equipment has been packed up in boxes since early November during our move and subsequent work on our new/old home's "finished basement" where my sewing room will be. The '70s-era basement basically needed to be completely re-finished (shag carpets and drop ceiling tiles removed, concrete floor repaired and repainted, wood paneling washed and painted, etc.). So that's been time consuming.

In addition to the wool sea creature cross stitch project I've been working on in between house projects, I decided on a whim to try making a '70s-looking cropped crochet granny square vest after seeing some amazing versions from fellow sewists LemonSeltzer, AmbrosiaKramer and NatasjaSchwarz. JewelMakes also made a beautiful version!

The pattern is a free one from Hayhay Crochet that comes in a wide variety of sizes (although I did find it hard to determine which size I was meant to follow). I roughly crocheted a size XL, I think, meaning my front and back squares were about 18 inches across before adding the side and shoulder pieces. 

I ended up sort of eyeballing it and feeling my way through it, using the pattern as a general guideline rather than a prescriptive rule. I ended up with a snug vest with a bit of negative ease, which I like. 

The yarn I used for my vest is a beautiful hand-dyed wool that's been in my stash since I bought in New Zealand when I visited there waaaaay back in 2014. The lovely variegated deep red, black and purpley gray colors of this Creative Yarns 8-ply yarn in the ladybug colorway ( which looks much brighter on their website than what I have) allowed me to avoid changing yarns and having to weave in extra ends!  

I had one 200 gram hank of 8-ply wool and I used the entire hank (about 400 meters) for this vest, with just a few yarn ends left over.

I used a J/6.00 mm crochet hook because that's what I could find. I didn't bother with any gauge swatches or anything, because I'm lazy. 

The pattern is very simple- just two large granny squares for front and back, connected at the sides and shoulders with a bit more granny stitch. An easy beginner project, I think!

I pretty much love it. Ridiculous and cute at the same time!

Tim does not feel the same way. His initial reaction was "It's vest-y," followed by "You look like one of the women in the Schweddy balls skit, like a caricature of an older Vermont woman who listens to NPR."  When further pressed, he conceded "It looks well made." and "I like the colors." 

Ha! Isn't that all true, and isn't that what I was aiming for?!

It's not clear that I've found the perfect way to style my granny square vest yet. I've paired it here with my Muna and Broad Tarlee turtleneck and jeans. I tried it with my Style Arc Hope Dress like AmbrosiaKramer did, but wasn't totally convinced of the look on me. 

I reeeeaaaally wanted to wear the cropped vest over an oversized white buttondown shirt and jeans, but the only one I have right now is too small. A good project for when I get my basement sewing studio up and running, huh?