The stitches that create the Aran knitting patterns are intricate and complex with a typical Aran Sweater using over 100,000 stitches, and may take several months to finish.
Here are some of Sweater Shop'sfavourite traditional Aran knitting patterns
The cable stitch was originally used to represent a fishermans ropes and some fishermen believed that wearing one would ensure a good day at sea. There are many different type of cable stitches and this style is arguably one of the easier Aran stitches to master. The cabling technique involves crossing one stitch over another. The row on which the stitches crossed over each other is known as the turning row. After the turning row, several plain rows are worked, followed by another turning row.
The diamond stitch symbolises the fields on the Aran islands. According to Aran legend this stitch represents hopes of good luck, success and wealth in farming for the inhabitants of the Aran Islands.
Zig Zag stitch
The Aran zig zag stitches are said to represent the highs and low of matrimony and life. The stitch also represents the twisting cliff paths that are synonymous with the Aran Islands.
The honeycomb stitch represents both hard work and its rewards. The Honeycomb stitch is said locally to bring luck and in the case of fishermen; a good and plentiful catch.Each honeycomb stitch pattern takes eight rows, and the rows are repeated to create the patterns.
The moss stitch is symbolic of a good harvest, it represents abundance and growth. It is said to depict carrageen moss, a type of seaweed found on the Irish coast, which is used as a fertiliser for fields.It is often used as a filler in diamond stitching.