The Guernsey

The heritage of the Guernsey is one seeped in tradition, history and daring.
The knitting tradition in Guernsey started with a royal license to import wool from England in the 1600’s. The Islanders produced woolen garments, mainly stockings and over garments for their beloved fisherman husbands or sons, whom were venturing further out to sea away from home waters for longer periods into unknown, often treacherous and colder conditions.

The islands’ fishing fleet during these pioneering times spanned from European coasts as far as America and Canada with fisheries being established along its coasts. The Guernsey was designed first and foremost as a practical garment with warmth as its priority yet it was also a symbol of dedication and a labour of love.

The jumpers were hand knitted in the round with over 16 fine needles that would take weeks to knit. Grandmothers, wives, daughters and wives to be, would knit the jumpers for their loved ones, with specific patterns, emblems and occasionally the fisherman’s initials too which identified the island, parish and family from which he came, meaning that, if lost at sea his body could be identified and returned home.

We continue this tradition by using a mixture of modern and ancient techniques handed down through the centuries to create a unique jumper that is hand finished by a team of Guernsey knitters just as skilled and dedicated to your jumper as the fishermans’ wives of old.

www.theguernsey.co.uk