Irish Gansey

This jumper is inspired by the tradition of Irish Ganseys, the traditional jumper or sweater of Irish fishermen.

Irish Gansey, Knitted with 4 ply Supreme-Possum-Merino, klick to enlarge

Download this free Irish Gansey pattern

History of the Irish Ganseys
Every family had their own patterns and used them more or less exclusively. It was not only the pride of every family to have such an exclusive and complicated pattern. It had a very sad background as well. The fishing industry in the 19th and early 20th century was very dangerous and the fishermen often had accidents, sometimes and very sadly with a deadly outcome. If the corpses could be recovered at all these jumpers were quite often the only possibility to identify the men by virtue of the patterns of these Ganseys.
Later, at the beginning of the 20th century the Gansey was no longer seen as a garment solely for working purposes but became a more fashionable item and was worn with the best clothes on Sundays as a certain kind of show off.
Originally, Ganseys were knitted in one piece and from the neck downwards. This made sense as these jumper were used for work and quite often got holes. These damaged parts were then cut off and the women simply added a new part instead of the damaged.

Here, in this pattern the body was knitted in rounds and the sleeves were knitted separately for reasons of convenience for the knitter.
We chose a yarn in 4ply as this is the most convenient for indoor wear and is even warm enough on a warmer winter day outside.

Difficulty: intermediate.


Please note, this patterns are designed especially for the use with Supreme-Possum-Merino, other qualities will need an adaption. All our designs are copyrighted work and available under the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 3.0 Licence.


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