For the green vest, I selected this pattern
for an overall cable and rib look. I decided since there was some variety to the cables, I didn't need other patterns involved.
Since I'm making this up as I go along, I diligently swatched, and got 4.5 stitches per inch with the size 8 needles I'm using for the body. I thought I'd aim for a 43-inch circumference, as the future recipient might be just a shade larger than Andy, and Andy's last sweater I made for a 42-inch circumference. 4.5 x 43 = 193.5 stitches. Adding a 10% ease for a cabled pattern and working into the 18-stitch pattern requirement, I originally decided to cast on 216 stitches. THEN I started measuring and second-guessing myself, and thought that maybe 10% wasn't enough ease for such a scrunchy pattern, so I then decided to cast on 234. In the ribbed part, the gauge is 6 stitches per inch. That made me a bit nervous as 234 divided by 6 = 39 inches in circumference. Hmmmmm. So I decided to add another 18 stitches, and now have 252 stitches: