Cosmic Teleidoscope Vest by Helen Bingham
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Cosmic Teleidoscope Vest

April 2010
Fingering / 4 ply (14 wpi) ?
20 stitches = 4 inches in stockinette stitch
US 4 - 3.5 mm
4.0 mm (G)
1500 - 2000 yards (1372 - 1829 m)
36-40" chest with easy directions for modifications
This pattern is available as a free Ravelry download

Elizabeth Zimmermann’s PI shawl was the inspiration for this vest. I have deep respect for Elizabeth. Her designs are timeless and give knitters a foundation to create a unique piece of fabric. You start with 9 sts on #4 dpn’s and end up with over 500 sts on a 40” needle. I used 5 different colors of Koigu Kppm - 2 skeins of each color. You can easily use Claudia Handpaints or Shibui as well. I have taught a class on this concept and the 6 vests have turned out amazing… all unique. I have another one on the needles and it looks entirely different than the original. To see some of the works in progress go to and look at the blog site.

This is a big circle with armholes created partway through. The directions will help you know how to get the proper fit for YOU. This project is a good way to use up your sock yarn stash, or do it all in one color. Please email me with any questions you have about the pattern. Looking forward to see your creation. xo

The vest knit mainly in blue is using ShiBui, Claudia, Dream in Color and Koigu sock yarn. I did not put an armhole in this piece and gave you two other options; baby blanket (washable) or a wrap (fold in half, and wear over shoulders with a pin). Good times.

At a certain point I thought this would make a fantastic vest. In Ms. Zimmermann’s book that held the directions for the PI Shawl and within the same chapter was her buttonhole directions. I thought to myself - a button hole is just a tiny hole. Why not make it a big hole so that arms can fit through it to create a vest.

Presto, I aligned the “button holes” and continued on with the PI Shawl. I then had a vest. Two lovely ladies that were customers who became friends at Fresh Purls in Providence, RI said I had to make it a published design. I published it on the Fresh Purls website and in later years on my website.

I hope you enjoy knitting in the round!