Traditional Aran sweater patterns
Cable knitting is a beautiful and complex style in which the order of stitches is rearranged to create various visual effects. Though there are many different types of cable knitting, ranging from one-cable serpentine styles to three-cable braids and even six-cable Saxon patterns, the style that is most recognizable and traditionally the most popular is the Aran knitting pattern. Sweater designs in the Aran style get their name from the Aran Islands off the coast of Ireland or from the Isle of Arran off the coast of Scotland. It is believed that these sweaters were first created to help keep fisherman warm and dry on their boats. They were knitted from unscoured wool, which retained enough natural oils to make the sweaters somewhat water resistant.
Aran sweater patterns are diverse and varied, and each design has a distinct meaning. For instance, a honeycomb style signifies hard work, a diamond pattern is a wish for wealth, and the basket stitch represents hope for a plentiful catch. Rope itself is an important part of a fisherman's trade, and the cable pattern is said to be a wish for good luck and safety.
Aran knitting pattern sweater designs
In contemporary times, Aran sweaters are usually made with cream-colored wool yarn. They feature 4-6 texture patterns that create vertical columns of 2-4 inches a piece. The patterns extend down the sleeves and are arranged symmetrically on the body of the sweater. Aran sweater patterns were first published in the 1940s by Patons of England, and sweater exports from Ireland to the United States began in the early 1950s. During that decade, Vogue magazine also printed articles on the sweaters, further contributing to their popularity.
If you are considering crafting an Aran sweater for yourself or for a special person in your life, it is best to start with a high-quality knitting pattern. Sweater patterns can be found online and in various books, magazines, and brochures. Our selection of patterns contains cable designs from some of the leading names in knitting yarn production. These patterns offer a range of interesting and lovely styles.