A Short History
The Isles of Aran are famous worldwide for their knitwear: the Aran jumper. Even today, these old, classic wool garments still have an impact on the clothing market. The Aran jumper and its versatile cousin, the Aran cardigan, are unmistakable with their distinctive and intricately woven patterns.
Aran knitwear takes its name from the Islands of Aran. Located off the coast Galway, on the west coast of Ireland, the Aran Islands rise up defiantly out of the relentless Atlantic. Aran jumpers were designed to fulfil the need for practical, warm clothing to keep the Islanders warm and dry through the long cruel winter months.
Knitted from pure wool, the Aran jumper is not only a practical garment, but became a distinctive icon of knitwear fashion over the centuries.
Aran Jumpers and Cardigans
Aran jumpers and cardigans are renowned for their rugged good looks, timeless style and unashamed warmth. Wool Overs has been knitting both Aran jumpers and Aran cardigans now for almost 20 years. Each is knitted from pure British wool in traditional Aran designs.
Aran cardigans and Aran jumpers have unique qualities. Aran knit sweaters can absorb 30% of their weight in water before feeling wet. Aran wool is breathable, and draws water vapour away from the wearer's body. This helps maintain a steady body temperature, at the same time as keeping the wearer warm and snug.
Caring for your Aran Cardigan or Jumper
All the Wool Overs' range of classic Aran knitwear is machine washable. Treated well, your Aran cardigan or jumper will last for years and retain its stylish good looks. For more information on washing your Aran knitwear, visit the 'Caring for your Knitwear' page.
Each Aran wool pattern has a story to tell. There are many traditional Aran jumper designs still in use today.
The following are just a few:
this suggestion of the bee, seen in an Aran jumper, is the sign of the sweet reward one gets for hard work.
one of the most famous Aran knitwear stitches, which represents the fisherman's hardy rope.
The Zig Zag:
this pattern, commonly used on Aran knitwear, is thought to represent the pathways of Aran and the vicissitudes of married life.
if your Aran jumper bears this pattern, it is your stairway to heaven.