Lotus Mandala Vest FAQ

Hi everyone! There’s been a recent surge in popularity of the free Lotus Mandala Vest pattern I designed last summer and I’ve been getting a lot of questions so I wanted to post this quick little FAQ. I have done my best to get back to everyone who  had questions (let me know if I missed you!) and I am SOOOO STOKED that you all like it so much!

Lotus Mandala Vest FAQ

Where can I get a printable PDF of this pattern?:

There is now a PDF version of this pattern, as well as a low-image printer-friendly version, available through Ravelry and Etsy. Check out the details on this blog post.

Is there a video tutorial for this pattern?:

Yes! I have begun recording the first 16 rounds of this design as the Lotus Mandala, which occurs in this pattern and the Lotus Duster pattern. You can find links to those videos here.

What size does this pattern fit?:

I designed this vest to have a very loose fit, with wide armholes placed 15″ apart across the back (relaxed). The diameter across the portion of the vest with armholes is 45″. The lovely Arika is shown modeling the vest in the pictures above, and it comfortably fits her with a bust of 41″,  and a shoulder width measurement of 16″. Hopefully that gives a more accurate depiction of the sizing!

How do I make the vest bigger?:

There are several good strategies for sizing up on this pattern – and although I don’t have an exact pattern for different specific measurements, I can offer a few tips gathered from my own experience and what others have suggested:
– Make sure to take the measurement between the shoulders for the person who will be wearing it! This is how far apart to place the armholes. Smaller sizes will place the armholes closer together, larger will generally place them farther apart.
– For bigger sizes, you will probably want to add extra repeats of Rnd 29, to make sure there is a wide enough edge for the garment to drape and ruffle proportionately.
-It’s also an option to add additional rows just before the armhole round.
-You can increase the size of the armholes by simply chaining more per armhole (your stitch counts will be different, but as long as you just repeat the main pattern around, you should be good), but be sure to skip more stitches on the round below if you do.

How do I make this vest smaller/child size?:

This depends on how small you want the pattern to be. For a smaller adult/teen size, placing the armholes closer together will size the vest down, and you can also size down by using a smaller yarn weight (such as a #2 weight instead of a #4 weight) and smaller hook. However, I can’t say how well this design will work for very small children as I have not tried it. The central “lotus” motif to this vest is fairly large and might not sit well on a much smaller body – When asked about making it in child size I generally refer people to the great free pattern Ring Around the Rosie Vest from The Lavender Chair, which is similar in style and written specifically for the wee ones.


That’s it for now! I will post more common questions if they come up. Thanks s much everyone for your support!


46 thoughts on “Lotus Mandala Vest FAQ

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    1. Hi there! If you’ve already worked the two Extra Rows as written in the pattern, you can try repeating the second extra row a few more times. This can be a bit tricky though, because if you repeat it too many more times the circle won’t lie flat because you’ll be adding too much extra diameter without expanding the circumference. If you still need to size up, consider moving the armholes further apart instead and doing the second set of repeat rows at Rnd 29. Does that make sense?

      1. Thx for ur reply i try to repeat the second extra row but by increasing the number of stitches to make the circle flat, but I think that u might have another way 🙂 anyway i will keep working till I have the size and will try to put the arms further apart too. Thx a lot for your help

  1. Plz i want to know if i repeat row 29 many times after how many rows should i increase the number of chain sts?

    1. Good question! I haven’t ever repeated that row more than one extra time, but you’ll need to add extra chain stitches as soon as the chain spaces between single crochets start to look tight when you lay the circle flat, since you don’t want the circle to bend inward. The edge of the vest at this point is pretty loose, so you can probably get 3-4 extra repeats in there before you need to worry about adding extra chains, but that’s just a guess since I haven’t done it. If you get 3 or 4 repeats in and still want more but aren’t sure if your chain spaces are too tight, you can go ahead and do a (sc, ch 7) repeat on the next round. Doing it early shouldn’t hurt anything 🙂

      1. Thx for ur fast reply ill try to make this. Hope to like it when i finish it can i have ur email in order to be able to send the pics to u?

      2. Absolutely, I’d love to see pictures when you are done, you can send them via e-mail to reginaalexisweiss(at)gmail.com or if you have Facebook, through messenger to my FB page! 🙂

    1. Hi Tammy! I always use the same hook, a 5.5, but I have heard a few suggestions from others about hook size for this when sizing up. You’ll want to use at least a J hook from what I’ve been told, but I have even heard people who have used up to an N hook for making a large size and have been happy with the result. That particular project (with the N hook) was for the sister pattern to this design, the Lotus Duster, but they are very similar so you might like to use her Ravelry Project page to get an idea about what that might look like:
      🙂 Hope that helps! Also you can visit the page with all the project examples for the Lotus Vest here:

  2. Hi Regina. I am having the same problem as someone else is having with the curling up like a hat after doing Rnd 4. Did you figure out what her problem was? Maybe it is mine too, I am using the Lion Brand 24/7 yarn and an 5.5 hook just as you suggested. The Vest is gorgeous and I have picked some awesome colors but I can’t get it to flatten out. Thanks for your help.

    1. Hi Terri! The majority of the time the problem people have with Rnd 4 is that they have read it wrong – I don’t know if that is the case with yours, but to clarify there should be TWO clusters per chain space with ch-2’s in between each one. 🙂 I think that round catches a lot of people off guard because the first space works only one cluster, then adds the second at the end of the round. I am currently working on getting all of the stitch counts at the end of each round added in for this pattern to help correct that confusion – I am almost done with that so the blog post pattern will be updated soon! Thanks and if that doesn’t help let me know! 🙂

  3. Hi This probably a silly question but I can’t see the answer and as a newbie in the crochet world I have been caught out by this before… what terms is this pattern written in UK or US? Also could I use Double knit wool for this. Sorry have only been crocheting for a year and don’t understand all the international terms yet like Skeins lol. Many Thanks in advance…Louise – UK

    1. Hi Louise! Not a silly question at all – this pattern is written in US terminology, and you could definitely do this in DK (double knit) weight 🙂 I am not sure how many yards of DK would be necessary to complete it, though.

  4. Starting at row 23, I do not understand the ending with dc in first sc, then starting next row with sc in same space.Do you mean the first chain 3 space or the space created by the dc? I’m confused.

  5. Hi… I have added the extra 2 rows and am now putting in the armholes. I did the dc ch 1 for the required 12 times and the measurement from one armhold to the next at the top of the armhold is only 8″ across I did not run into any other problems before this. Am I doing something wrong, or should I just continue ???

  6. I so love this pattern and thank you for sharing it. I have done well until round 9. But now I am lost and confused. Lol can you please help me from the beginning of round 9. Thank you so very much. 😊

    1. Thank you so much, I am at the very beginning of row 9. I did the ch 3, a trc in the sc between the dc, but I don’t know where to go from there.

      1. Ok! So your first 3 stitches in Rnd 9 are actually one stitch – the first ch 3 counts as one treble with the last loop left on the hook, then, another treble is worked in the next sc, leaving the last loop on the hook. Then, a 3rd treble with the last loop left on the hook is worked in the next dc (all of the ch spaces in between the dc, sc, and next dc are skipped). Then you will draw a loop through all the trebles left on your hook, making a treble3together. They will form sort of a pyramid shape – see the close-up of the vest pictured at the bottom of the pattern for a better look! After that, you chain 7, then repeat the grouping by putting your next treble with last loop left on the hook in the SAME STITCH as the LAST treble you worked for the previous grouping. Does that make sense? It definitely helps to take a look at the close-up image.

  7. I am about to seize up my last brain gear. I have done row 9 FIVE times. Pattern says I should have 16 tr3tog + 16 spaces. Nope. Nada. Not happening. I crochet, counting out loud each stitch…then count my groupings. 15 tr3tog every gosh darn time. I do not known what I am doing wrong. I went back to row 8. Re-counted and that row is correct. Help!!!! My husband is asking why I don’t give up….But I want to make something for myself for a change and my heart is set on This!!!

    1. Hi Kim! Don’t worry, I am sure we can figure it out. Rnd 9 tends to give people problems! So you should be starting Rnd 9 with your hook positioned in the first dc of Rnd 8 that you joined into. The initial stitch is a Ch 3, which counts as the first treble with one loop left on the hook. For the next st, treble with one loop left on the hook in the next SC, then treble with one loop left on the hook in the next DC. YO and draw through all loops on the hook, then ch-7.

      For the next repeat, you are going to treble with one loop left on the hook in the SAME DC into which you worked the last Tr for the previous repeat. This is the part that usually trips people up. Each repeat of the treble clusters shares a DC on each side, meaning each DC from Rnd 8 will end up having two treble stitches, leaning in opposite directions (because they belong to two separate tr3tog clusters). If this is hard to visualize go back to the original Lotus Vest post and scroll down to the bottom – there is a a close-up of this section where you can see exactly how the triangle shapes formed by the clusters are supposed to look for Rnd 9 (It’s labeled with Rnd 12 highlighted, but you can see Rnd 9 too).

      If this part isn’t the source of your problem, just let me know and we will continue figuring it out! 🙂

  8. Hi,thank you very much for the awesome vest! can i ask you also two questions?The pattern is for the long vest or for the sort???And what brand of garn you use and what colors? I m talking for the girl in the forest the colors is purple pink white and blue…Thank you again 🙂

    1. Hi Antonia! This FAQ is for the pattern for the Lotus Mandala Vest, the shorter version of this pattern. The longer version is called the Lotus Mandala Duster, the one with the sleeves (that pattern can be found here):
      For the Vest, the yarn used is listed on the pattern page. For the Duster, I do not use commercial yarns (except for the example shown in all white, which is the yarn used for the pattern example and is listed at the top). I make my versions of the Duster pattern mostly with yarn reclaimed from old sweaters and also handspun yarns that I make myself 🙂

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