Aran Sweater Patterns

The Aran Sweaters takes its name from the Aran Islands the place where it originated from. The Aran Islands are off the west coast of Ireland in the Atlantic Sea. The traditional Irish aran knitting patterns have passed down through generations and are still going strong today!

The Aran Sweater Patterns & Stitches

Aran Sweater Patterns were safeguarded by clans and passed down from generation to generation, and an identity for their family name. Presently there are over 130 patterns of Aran wool sweaters on display in the Aran Sweater Market on the islands. A completed Aran sweater can have up to 100,000 stitches carefully crafted by the specific clan for their pattern style. Modern-day garment productions have moved far beyond the hand stitch craftsmanship of the Aran Knitters and as a result, these have become rare.



With each piece of Aran knitwear here at Carrolls Irish Gifts being hand-made, that makes each piece unique. Some of the symbols used have a traditional interpretation, mainly a representation of good luck and wishes with some closely associated with religion. These aran sweater knitting patterns continue to fascinate people worldwide. Aran sweaters are designed with many traditional designs and aran stitches, we will take a closer look at some of these famous Traditional Irish aran knitting patterns and stitches.


Cable stitch – A timeless classic, it represents the fishermen’s ropes. Warn by fishermen out at sea for extra warmth was sadly often used to identity fisherman that sadly washed up onshore due to the unique designs passed down from generation to generation by families.

Diamond stitch – This stitch represents the field of the Aran Islands and the shapes and movement of the mesh used to make the fishing net. It is also used as a traditional blessing and wish to bring wealth, treasure, and success.

Honeycomb stitch – The symbol of the hard-working bee. People of the Aran Islands valued hard work It was considered a lucky omen if a fisherman saw a swarm of bees before setting out to sea a good catch was assured.

Zig Zag stitch – represents the twisting cliff paths on the islands or more commonly when you’re going through a rocky patch, don a zig zag stitch to remind yourself to keep faith. When your relationship is going great, a zig zag reminds you too not to be too smug.

Trellis stitch – This stitch is intricately weaved together on top of a purl stitch and represents the stoney fenced fields of the West and the nets of the fishermen. The fences, like the stitch offer protection against the elements, the strong Atlantic wind.

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