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Aran Woollens - How to care for your knitwear

How to Care for your Aran

It takes around 100,000 stitches to complete an Aran jumper. Each stitch is steeped in history and symbolism.

The Moses stitch symbolises an abundance of growth

The Blackberry stitch represents nature

Honeycomb stitch represents plenty and is classed as a lucky stitch

Lattice and Basket stitches represent the old wicker baskets of the fishermen’s wives

The Tree of Life represents family and the stages of life

Knowing each stitch has been crafted with love and attention to detail makes these desirable and yet practical items.

Wool is a renewable and sustainable material which can provide protection against the elements and is resilient to wear and tear as opposed to a more synthetic material but needs care when washing and drying.

Airing your garment regularly is a better choice than regular washing for an Aran item. Regular washing can damage the fibres in the wool and cause breakages and stress to the fibres over time.

When you do come to the time to wash your garment, we suggest that you never put it in the tumble dryer or washing machine as this will most definitely cause shrinkage. There are three points that can cause damage to your item, too much heat, too much agitation and too much washing powder!

Each individual fibre of wool has little jagged edges called cuticles, when they are woven together, they help the fibres to bind to one another. Too much agitation causes the fibres to grip on to each other tightly and causes them to stick to each other rather than just gripping. Felt is made by agitating wool fibres and you do not want this to happen to your jumper!

Wool is an animal product and as such is full of proteins. Detergents contain an enzyme called protease which breaks down proteins and cleans them out of the fabric, all well and good if you have ketchup on your tee shirt but as the protease is designed to destroy proteins not so good for a garment that is made up off proteins.

To safely wash your Aran, handwash the garment in lukewarm water, with a small amount of baby shampoo.

Try not to handle the garment to much whilst washing as this will damage the fibres. Carefully rinse the garment and again try not to handle to use lukewarm water much and only.

Dry your sweater by lying it flat on a few towels. Never wring it out. If there is a lot of excess water, lay the item flat on top of a towel and roll the towel and item together, like a sausage roll and press firmly but do not twist.

If in doubt check the manufacturers washing guide found on the garments label, the garment will have been tested to the highest quality and the instructions will have been approved by the manufacturer.

Aran wool Mills - inspiration Irish Knitwear

Aran Woollens at Hollands