I've been working away on my Americano vest, shown above (on a rather petite model). I loved this design the moment I saw it, and I was really looking forward to throwing it on over a long-sleeved t-shirt and jeans.
After I finished the fronts and back, I thought I'd baste up the side seams and see how it fit. I did a quick and dirty seaming job here...just enough to hold the pieces together. I tried it on, using a big stitch holder in place of the top button. I walked to the mirror. Fail. Way too tight around the tummy. I could barely close it.
What to do? I considered knitting some panels for the sides to add a little extra width, but the length didn't feel quite right either. The close tailoring and waist-cinching fit looks great on the model, but the last thing I need right now is a vest squeezing my belly. Think gaping button holes...not good.
When it comes right down to it, the overall style doesn't really work for my post-baby, mid-Oregon winter physique. I love the vest, through, so I think I'll try it again in the fall in a larger size with added length. Maybe I'll even have a bit more of a waist to accentuate at that point! As for this (too) little vest, it will be ripped out to become something even better that I can wear right now.
While this particular project was a bust for me, I really enjoyed the yarn. I used Berroco Peruvia Quick, and it has quickly become one of my favorite yarns at the shop. For the vest, I intentionally used a US10, a smaller needle than recommended for the yarn, to achieve a dense fabric. I've swatched the Peruvia Quick on a US11, and the fabric is very different, but I like it. I have a few patterns in mind for this yarn, so it certainly won't languish in the stash for long.
Lesson learned. I must knit body-appropriate items if I ever hope to get any use out if them. If you are a new knitter, please take solace in the fact that it has taken me more than ten years of knitting and three years working at a yarn shop to figure this out.