Christmas Sweater

So for pretty much as long as me and N. have been together, about three years now, I have promised him a hand knit fishing sweater for Christmas.  And this is the year of completing things, so I'm finally going to do it. After a couple months of us searching for the perfect pattern I think we've finally found it.  Simple, functional, not too bulky but not too thin, nothing frilly.  func. tion. al.  It might not be the most exciting thing to knit, but seeing as this will be my first adult-sized sweater, that's probably a good thing.

We decided on the Colonel Henley from Spud and Chloe (designed by Elizabeth Green Musselman)

Not too sure what yarn I'm going to use yet.  I'm probably not going to go with the Spud and Chloe Sweater as suggested, only because I would either have to drive down to Washington or into Vancouver to get it, or pay a million dollars to have it shipped, and I'm just not going to do that.  He said he wants something in a nice, dark charcoal or olive green and he'll be using it for outdoorsy man-stuff,  so it does have to be able to get washed.  I'll just have to go to the store and check out my options.

Since this is my first sweater, my first anything that actually has fit, any advice?  Words of encouragement?  Yarn suggestions?