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Irish Aran Belted Sweater Jacket

Price: $165.00

Item#:2000518

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For more than a century, knitters on Ireland's rugged Aran islands have been developing the intricate stitches for which their sweaters are known. This belted cardigan mixes today's style with time-honored handcrafted technique in a cable and trellis pattern.


Two front patch pockets. Made in Ireland of 100% merino wool. Women’s sizes S (4-6), M (8-10), L (12-14), XL (16-18), XXL (20).


Hand-wash or dry clean.

The thick-knit, cream-colored sweater that we often associate with fishermen has its origins on the Aran Islands at the mouth of Galway Bay in western Ireland. Enterprising women on the islands began knitting the sweaters in the early 1900s, using untreated, lanolin-rich wool. The goal was not only to provide a heavy and water-resistant garment to keep their families warm in Galway Bay's rough weather, but also to supplement the island's fishing economy by making a craft that could be sold year-round and utilized traditional skills and patterns. Journalist and Irish culture activist Pádraig Augustine Ó Síocháin helped make the Aran sweaters especially popular in the mid-20th century by organizing the export of hand-knit sweaters to other countries.


There is a myth that families each have their own patters of stitches, and that a drowned fisherman could be recognized by the designs on his sweater, much like a Scottish clan tartan. While it's true that certain stitches have come to take on symbolic meanings, the diversity of patterns is more accurately attributed to the creative group of artisans who started making the sweaters. Always eager to show off new ideas, creative knitters developed new patterns and taught them to their friends, who added their own twists and passed the pattern along again.


Today, folks on the islands and visitors from around the world often choose sweaters based on the symbolism that the different intricate stitches have taken on. Just some of the patterns found include:

  • Cable stitches represent fishing ropes and therefore the tools of a hard worker and safety on the water.
  • Braided cable stitches evoke the strength of close family ties.
  • Moss stitches represent abundance in nature.
  • Diamond stitches mimic the shape of fishing nets mesh, the key to success on the Arans.
  • Basket stitch represents a plentiful catch.
  • Honeycomb stitches represent the hard work of the honeybee and the rewards of an industrious life.
  • Trinity stitches are traditional Celtic motifs and signify cultural pride.

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
Irish Aran Belted Sweater Jacket
 
4.4

(based on 7 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

    Cons

      Best Uses

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No (5)

        Reviewed by 7 customers

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        Displaying reviews 1-7

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        4.0

        Great Sweater

        By RedHeart

        from RedWing, MN

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Cozy Thick And Luxurious

        Cons

        • Belt Could Be 6" Longer

        Best Uses

          Comments about Irish Aran Belted Sweater Jacket:

          Cozy, warm wrap-around, perfect for winter days. I got an XL which fits well, but I'd like for the belt to have been 6" longer so it drapes better.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No
           
          4.0

          This is a beautiful,well crafted item.

          By mr.moon

          from Troutdale,Oregon

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

            Cons

              Best Uses

                Comments about Irish Aran Belted Sweater Jacket:

                I gave this sweater as a gift.It will be useful for years to come

                • Was this a gift?:
                • Yes

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                Beautifully made, quality sweater

                By White Mtn Goat

                from northern NH

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                      Comments about Irish Aran Belted Sweater Jacket:

                      Sweater was slightly shorter and smaller than I expected given the size chart.

                      • Was this a gift?:
                      • No

                      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      Exactly what I expected!

                      By Patti1940

                      from West Warwick, RI

                      Pros

                      • Fit Will Be My
                      • for fall

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Fall Sweater That
                        • Fall Sweater That Goes

                        Comments about Irish Aran Belted Sweater Jacket:

                        The one I'll grab on my way out the door this fall
                        Color, quality, and warmth
                        Can't think of any

                        • Was this a gift?:
                        • No

                        (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        Bought a second one!

                        By automation7

                        from Brooklyn, New York

                        Verified Reviewer

                        Pros

                        • Casualcorporate Style
                        • Figure Flattering Style

                        Cons

                        • Belt Loops Are High

                        Best Uses

                          Comments about Irish Aran Belted Sweater Jacket:

                          Previous reviews indicate belt loops are too high for a tall person. However, photo of catalog/online model show this is the intended style.
                          Enjoyingit as casual wear (with a cami/tank top) or with a shirt collar and cuffs showing for a more sophisticated look.
                          Bought gray and then red.

                          • Was this a gift?:
                          • No

                          (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          4.0

                          Irish belted sweatef

                          By MGM

                          from WPB, Fl

                          Verified Reviewer

                          Pros

                          • BEAUTIFUL
                          • Nice color red
                          • Warm

                          Cons

                          • Belt Loops 1 12

                          Best Uses

                            Comments about Irish Aran Belted Sweater Jacket:

                            This is a beautifully knit sweater. The belt loops are at least 1 1/2" too high even for my average height of 5' 6". Unfortunately I tried to cut them off only to discover they are knit as part of the sweater body-- not sewn on separately. It created a Hole which I had to very carefully hand sew closed. Other than that I love the sweater. A great weight for a cool day instead of wearing a coat.

                            • Was this a gift?:
                            • No

                            (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                             
                            5.0

                            Comfortable sweater

                            By Linda

                            from Idaho

                            Verified Buyer

                            Pros

                            • BEAUTIFUL
                            • Comfortable
                            • Warm

                            Cons

                            • belt loops too high

                            Best Uses

                              Comments about Irish Aran Belted Sweater Jacket:

                              Beautiful, warm and comfortable. I love it! It comes with a belt but I found the loops to be too high for me (I am 5'7"), so I just wear it without the belt and it works fine. I receive compliments every time I wear it.

                              Displaying reviews 1-7

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