Wearing tweed is about more than just looking great, it’s about making a connection with the authentic Irish history that created this unique style. Tweed, like authentic Irish Aran, draws on Irish myth and legend to give you fashionable items that stand out from the crowd and feel truly special to wear. It’s the ideal fabric for Autumn and Winter, when the nights grow longer and the weather cools. Perfect for windy walks on the beach or a stroll around town, it will keep you cosy all season.
Tweed is created, like Aran, to keep its wearer warm in cold weather and protect against the rain and biting wind rolling in from the Atlantic. Prior to its adoption by English gentry as hunting wear, it was prized by explorers and mountaineers as it could protect against the harshest weather conditions. It was picked up by the mainstream fashion industry when Coco Chanel borrowed Tweed hunting garments from the Duke of Westminster and was inspired to create her iconic Tweed suits.
Choose Tweed For Timeless Style
Whether you fancy trying the classic Tweed flat cap or the striking wraps and bags that our expert weavers have created for our contemporary market, you can be sure that your items made from this material will be beautifully crafted and made with love. You can create any number of looks with our divinely soft Celtic scarves, and you’ll love the stunning patterns inspired by drawings by the ancient Celts.
Tweed is timeless, and you can dress it up or down and accessories for a specific look when you find a piece you love. You can pair your trousers with a classic Aran knit or opt for a chic Tweed jacket and add skinny jeans for a contemporary twist, or simply add a Newsboy Hat to your outdoor wear to enhance your stylish look this season. Whatever you choose, your Tweed will ensure that you stand out from the crowd as well as staying cosy throughout the colder months.
The Tweed Tradition
This material is entwined with Irish history, with a fragment of woven cloth found at an Antrim bog dating back to around 700BC. It is believed that the craft of weaving in Ireland can be traced as far back as 1600BC, to the fabric used for resting clay before it was fired. Stone spinning whorls have also been discovered at ancient crannogs and lake dwellings in Ireland, and excavations dating from Viking and Medieval Dublin have revealed fragments of woven fabrics.
The historical importance of weaving in Ireland stands out in the Brehon Laws, dating from 600-800AD, which state that a woman’s spindles, wool bags, and a part of the yarn and wools she had spun could all remain with her if she were to be divorced. Research suggests that weavers were either rural or urban, the former weaving for his own family and neighbours, and the latter taking commissions from larger estates and weaving for export abroad.
Weaving for export from Ireland was restricted by laws introduced at the end of the 17th century, at the same time as the great Irish Famine, and many weavers were ruined. Those who survived were based in Donegal, Mayo and Galway, and the trade began building up once more. Irish weavers today include top quality crafters such as Avoca, Foxford Mills, Branigan and Muckross Weavers.
Tweed and Aran: The Cosy Combination
When it’s cold outside, Tweed and Aran clothing come into their element, and you will feel snug throughout the Autumn and Winter when you embrace this style. They make the most of natural fibres that help to regulate your body temperature, so they will keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter, but the style lends itself to cosying up by the fire after a bracing walk in the fallen leaves.
Autumn is all about enjoying the outdoors, collecting fruit from the hedgerows and making the most of the light as the days shorten. We love to walk to our local pub, work up an appetite and cook up a storm back at home. It’s also a treat to stoke up the fire, snuggle up with a hot chocolate and watch a seasonal film with your friends and family, and we love the versatile Tweed and Aran garments that help us to make the most of the season.
Our Favourite Tweed Styles
This year, we will mostly be wearing Tweed and Aran garments with a modern twist. There’s something for every taste, and the classic pieces will never go out of fashion. We’ve picked out some items that have caught our eye, but when you discover the range for yourself, you’ll see how hard it was for us to narrow it down! Take a look and set yourself up for a warm and stylish autumn and winter this year.
Womenswear: Our Favourites
Our top picks for women this season include:
- Newsboy Hats. The Newsboy hat or cap is a real classic, previously known as the Baker Boy Hat, Gatsby Cap or Peaky Blinders Cap. The perfect accessory for all seasons, these Tweed hats are ideal to protect against the elements in the cooler weather. These stylish hats are crafted by Mucros Weavers and you will find it difficult to choose between the beautiful Denim, Magenta and Light Green Plaid designs. There are many plaid options to make your selection from, and some feature decorative rosettes to set your look off to perfection.
- Tweed Bags. You can’t fail to fall in love with the beautiful tweed and leather bags created by weavers such as Aran Woollen Mills and Mucros Weavers. These bags are made with the highest grade leather and 100% wool tweed and you’ll be sure to find the ideal option for every occasion.
- Mucros Poncho. Wrap up warm this winter with the beautiful Mucros Poncho in Blue Green Plaid, crafted using 100% Wool Tweed by Mucros Master Weavers in their Killarney studio. This is a stylish cape, lined in satin, and is the perfect companion for wintery walks this year.
Menswear: Our Favourites
There is a great range of menswear and our favourite Tweed designs include:
- The Flat Cap. The Flat Cap is the most authentically Irish style, and you will find a huge variety of colours and patterns to choose from. These caps are made by top quality weavers Mucros, under the watchful eye of Master Weaver John Cahill in Killarney, County Kerry. Irish flat caps are crafted using the finest wool tweed and lined with a luxurious quilted lining for extra warmth. This is the perfect way to show a loved one how much you care, and he will remember your thoughtfulness every time he steps outside this winter.
- The Grandfather Shirt. The Grandfather Shirt is a traditional Irish look, with a collarless style that suits most men and boys well. You’ll find these stylish shirts in many different colours and fabrics, and the brushed soft linen is a truly beautiful fabric that is warm, soft to wear, and durable. These shirts are ideal for dressing up or down, with formal trousers or casual jeans.
- The Tweed Waistcoat. Whether you are a fan of the grandfather shirt or prefer a collar, a Tweed Waistcoat is the perfect way to set off your look and stand out from the crowd. This fitted style is a timeless classic and can be dressed up for a special occasion such as a wedding, or styled more casually with a pair of well chosen jeans. Either way, your Tweed waistcoat is certain to turn heads and get you noticed for all the right reasons.
Choose Your Tweed Today
Tweed is an ideal way to create a classic and chic style that will stand out from the crowd, and every piece resonates with Irish history. You can visit one of the three stores in Ireland, at Killarney, Kenmare and Kinsale, or browse an online catalogue at weaversofireland.com . You’ll find clothes for men, women and children, as well as beautiful throws, accessories and more. It’s never been so easy or so stylish to own a piece of Irish heritage!