Orvis sells a dark brownish-grey version, knit from the undyed wool of black sheep.

The Aran Sweater Spectrum

The Aran sweater gets its name from the islands off the west coast of Ireland, where the style originated around the 17th century. Often cream in color and always chunky in texture, the sweaters were first knit by the wives of fishermen using unscoured wool that retained the fibers' natural oils which provided protection from the cold, wet conditions at sea. The different kinds of stitches had different connotations, with the cable stitch representing a fisherman's ropes. Today's are a bit softer and some have been shrunken for a more modern fit. Herewith, a range from the affordable to the investment piece:

Simply Irish, $72

Made in Ireland from Irish wool with a traditional fit.

J.Crew, $108

Knit with chunky cotton yarn with a wide neck and full arms.

Burberry Prorsum, $895

Hand-knit in Italy from a lambswool/cashmere blend.


Peregrine by J.G. Glover, $80

Made in England from merino wool with a modern fit.

Polo Ralph Lauren, $185

A cotton/linen blend with a modern fit and a rolled neck.


Published on

October 18, 2011

Written by

of Valet.