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We are very fortunate to have the wonderful Úna McDonagh as our host for our knitting visits to the glorious Aran Islands, home of the world-renowned Aran style of knitting. It is no surprise to us she was the sought out expert for a knitting emergency and an Aran-knitting tale starting thirty years ago! Situated off the coast of counties Clare and Galway, they consist of three islands including the largest, Inis Mór, featuring the World Heritage Site of Dun Aonghasa and Inis Oirr – the smallest island, oozing charm and heritage way bigger than its size! The third is Inisheer.
A proper island community, steeped in tradition, Irish language and heritage crafts. No wonder it is such a popular location to visit! Our knitting host and Aran expert Úna McDonagh introduces this incredible combination of knitting and hospitality to our knitters, It was such an occasion that led to a a regular holidaymaker reaching out for help!
Dan McSweeney honeymooned on the Aran Islands some thirty years ago. While exploring island life with his new bride, Dan purchased a traditional Aran cardigan. This cardigan was such a favourite, time and continuous wear made a hole in the sleeve.
As a treat for his graduating son, Dan returned to Inis Mór last October. He brought the sweater with him, in the hope he could find someone to repair it. Dan asked around and was having no luck, until someone at the Aran Islands Hotel remembered Úna was on the island hosting a knitting workshop for our knitters!
Úna was only too delighted to oblige, so set about finding matching yarn and making the repairs. Once done, our talented knitting instructor returned the happy sweater to Dan and he was delighted!
Of course as he continued wearing his heirloom, it was only a matter of time before his wife spotted a hole appearing in the other sleeve!
Mrs McSweeney sent back the Aran knit cardigan to Úna for another solid repair. A true story of love, marriage and sustainability, with Úna and the Aran knit at its very heart.