There is something of debate about what constitutes the best type of sweater when it comes to how it was woven. For the most part the jumpers and sweaters that we wear today are mass produced. However there is still a demand for the handmade as it seems to hark back to the days when this was always the case. There is something special about having an item of clothing that you know is handmade. The thought that someone has taken the time and effort, plus put in a huge degree of skill to create something unique and not mass produced. It’s like the times when Women’s Aran Sweaters like those from Shamrock Gift, were created almost exclusively on the island as means to keep warm, go fishing and do farm work. Aran is not known for its clement climate.
Hand looms use pegs pushed into a round, oblong or square frame. This is used instead of needles. The pegs take over the role of the needle in this regard. Each of the pegs hold one loop. These loops represent a stitch as if you would use a needle. The yarn is wrapped around the pegs and then forged by the knitter. The yarn on the loom is knit together to form the sweater. Regular hand knitted sweaters follow the usual format of two needles and a lot of work for the knitter working in rows.
It’s very hard to tell the difference between the two types. However if we take a closer look you can see that the stitches are not as tight on the hand loom version. Also the hand knitted sweater retains its shape for longer and can take more washes.