Blocking Arans?

After weaving in all the loose yarn threads, I gave Inishmaan a good soak in my Eucalen filled bathtub.  Then, I put her in a zippered pillowcase and put her on the spin cycle in my washer.  While she was spinning I put together the Wooly Board that I use for blocking fair isle sweaters.  After I painstakingly got her on the frame I realized that this might not be the best way to block an Aran sweater.  I could see that the heavy weight of the cables pulled on the shoulder cables opening them up.

So………all of you who have knit Aran sweaters…………how do you block them?

Pattern:  Inishmaan by Alice Starmore

Yarn:  Cascade 220 in Mossy Rock (dark olive)

Needle Sizes:  US 6 and US 8

This was a very enjoyable knit for me.  I knit the medium size and probably should have gone with a small.  The sweater is oversized and will be great for hiking and going on long walks which was its original intention.

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16 thoughts on “Blocking Arans?

  1. Congratulations on finishing it! I’ve never knit an Aran sweater before, so I’m no help with your blocking question, unfortunately.

  2. Your sweater is beautiful! I too have made one from the same Alice Starmore book. I think I finished it 8 years ago. Anyway, I simply laid it flat. I have a piece of dense fiber board called homosote – available at Home Depot – which I store vertically in the basement. When I need to block, I put it on the floor, lay the garment down, and aim a fan that way. If the sweater is all put together, generally don’t pin. If I must block in pieces, I will shape each one according to the diagram for the pattern and secure with T-pins stuck into the homosote. In either case, I aim a fan at the whole works and wait until it is dry.

  3. I do not have a wooly board but I also do not knit many pullovers. When I knit my Alice Starmore Inishman, I blocked it on my blocking tiles which are really floor tiles that lock together like a puzzle.

  4. I’ve knit 3 arans in my life – Blocked by rolling it in a wet towel overnight to dampen (the first blocking) and then laying it on the floor – gently urging it into shape.
    From then on I basically do the same thing except I wash – then roll in towel to take heavy wetness out before shaping on the floor.
    Your Inishmaan is GORGEOUS!!

  5. Gorgeous sweater! That color is perfect for the pattern too. I usually lay my arans flat to dry, but I did use the wooly board for St. Brigid because I wanted to stretch it an inch or two. It does seem to flatten the cables a bit.

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