I finally finished my son's pirate jumper (started in Nov/ Dec) while getting over tonsillitis (I'll go into detail another time!) This was by Zoe Mellor in the Adorable Knits for Kids Book and also her Big Book of Knits.
Ever though my son is 21 months old and the jumper is aged 3-4 (I think) it only just fits him. I checked my tension, and that was perfect so the pattern is just on the small side. My son is below average size as well. So the best thing to do is measure child, then work out if the finished piece will give enough room.
The other thing I had an issue with were the sleeves, which I messed up a bit. I had to increase the stitches every 4 rows, and end up with c 56 stitches, and for it to measure a certain length from the cuff edge. Well there was no way I was going to get the final 56 stitches across at the desired length, so I had to unravel and add in more stitches. Next time I will work out when to add extra stitches and not rely on the author!
I did have a lot of sewing in of ends to do, and I probably could have minimised that more by bringing the yarn up through the stripes. Still it was a learning experience.
I found the intarsia fine to do, and was less daunting once I got started on it. Again it's the sewing in the ends that takes a while.
For my first jumper I learnt a lot but overall am very proud that it turned out mainly ok. And my son, for the shortwhile he gets to wear it looks adorable.
PS Of course I'm on my next BIG project!!!