Quick and Easy Knitted Vest

I’ve been thinking about teaching myself to knit for a while. I wondered if it would be faster than crochet (I am SO slow!), and I see so my cute knit patterns when looking for crochet ones. But I don’t need more scarves, I don’t have a baby and I really don’t want to start with a big project like a blanket – I’ll just get frustrated that it’s never going to end. So what’s a good quick beginner knitting project?


I picked up a copy of Better Homes and Gardens’ “Your Knitting & Crochet Collection” magazine at the supermarket, mainly for the crochet patterns, but of course, there are a lot more knitting patterns in there. The Tulip cropped panel vest caught my eye:

Knitted Vest

It looked like a simple pattern (and it is – it’s just two rectangles), with chunky wool and BIG needles. I’ve been getting into wearing vests lately, since winter isn’t that cold here in Perth. They keep me a bit warmed and make my Mum uniform a little more stylish.

Cropped Knitted Vest (2)

So I bought some chunky wool (Fiddlesticks Chunky Tweed in Petrol Blue from Big W) and some 12mm (US size 17) knitting needles. Last Friday night, while my husband watched the Tour de France and I was listening to a webinar (what exciting lives we lead!), I decided to give it a go.

Cropped Knitted Vest (3)

And it was surprisingly quick and easy! The pattern is simple knit rows and purl rows, although knit rows are done wrapping the yarn twice around the needle to create the big looping stitches, dropping the extra loop in the purl rows. (And my husband laughed every time he saw the giant needles.)

Cropped Knitted Vest (4)

I had fun seeing the vest grow so quickly (which felt like I was cheating on crochet – sorry!), but it motivated me to keep going. I spent the weekend sneaking off to do a couple of extra rows whenever I got the chance, and by mid-Sunday afternoon, it was ready to be stitched together.

Cropped Knitted Vest (9)

And I’m really happy with the result.

Cropped Knitted Vest (6)

I made a couple of mistakes. I knew when I was knitting that something was wrong, but I wasn’t sure how to fix it. I gave myself some grace and decided it wouldn’t matter too much anyway, and just ploughed ahead. (This article from LionBrand about catching and fixing mistakes just popped up in my RSS feed – I’ll study that for next time!).

Cropped Knitted Vest (1)

So now I’ve got a cute knitted vest and my knitting confidence is high.

Cropped Knitted Vest (8)
(Photo-bombing puppy!)

I was op-shopping yesterday and picked up two more BH&G knitting books, and I’m eyeing off all sorts of advanced projects! Maybe I’m getting a bit over-confident.

Cropped Knitted Vest (5)

So I’m thinking I should knit for one of my kids next – something that’s still fairly quick and easy so I don’t lose confidence.

What are your favourite beginner knitting projects?


  1. Where can you find this book / pattern? I’ve searched the web and I can’t find a place to order it. Thanks!

    1. This was a special edition magazine that I picked up at the supermarket (here in Australia). Since it’s now summer, it’s no longer available to purchase.

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