rigg vaarie jacket
Feel what you wear, wear it how you feel – like our evolving states, there are countless ways to wear Vaarie, our signature jacket.
Effortless and easy, down side up or upside down, neat and short or relaxed and long, unadorned or with a pin. This jacket has been a bestseller since it launched as one of our first pieces of knitwear in 2008.
Genuinely 'vaarie' (that's flexible, in Shetlandic) in the wearing. The squashy nature of the Rigg fabric adds to the useful nature of this piece—squish it up into your bag...no ironing worries.
Your colour is waiting! We make the Vaarie jacket in a rainbow of colours, with each colour in a very small edition. Particular colours are not available for long!
Materials & manufacture
- 65% extra-fine merino wool
- 35% supersheen acrylic – a combination of fibres of superior quality and carefully sourced from Italy
- Knitted by skilled local craftspeople and hand-finished in the Shetland Islands, Scotland
- Pin shown for illustration only
Sizing & fit
Sizes available: small (guide size 8-14); medium (guide size 10-18); large (guide size 16-24)
The shorter, slouchier way
- A1 (underarm-underarm, measured across the back): 50cm; 55cm; 58cm
- B1 (back length): 40cm; 45cm; 52cm
- C1 (sleeve length): 50cm; 52cm; 55cm
The long, neater way
- A2 (underarm-underarm, measured across the back): 60cm all sizes
- B2 (back length): 46cm; 52cm; 56cm
- C2 (sleeve length): 42cm; 48cm; 52cm
As you’ll see above, this jacket can be turned upside down, and worn to give a different style!
Measurements are very approximate. Due to the stretch, scrunch and drape of the Rigg textile, it’s difficult to get an absolutely exact measurement. The sizes given on the diagrams are for the garments laid flat. When worn the sizes will change as the textile moves—for these garments the dress size guide is a more useful way to choose the best size.
These can be worn well on all body shapes, the textile moves to suit the wearer.
Vaarie jacket (left) with Long Vaarie jacket (right), showing difference in length.
If you're looking for a jacket with a bit more coverage, you might like our Long Vaarie jacket.
The Rigg collection: design process and inspiration
There are many ways in which tradition can inspire. My bestselling knitwear collection, Rigg, borrows a principle from Fair Isle knitting.
Rigg pieces are not influenced by how Fair Isle knitting looks. Instead, inspiration came from the construction of these traditional pieces. In particular I became really interested in how air is knitted into Fair Isle garments, and the way this contributes to warmth and their characteristic, lofty handle.
The reverse of the Rigg knitted textile: tension-creating 'floats' of yarn create pockets of air
By manipulating tension during the knitting process, the Rigg fabric is pulled into soft ridges, which creates the pockets of air in this delightfully squishy fabric.
Great for travelling, Rigg pieces can be rolled up and popped in your bag.
- Last orders, international: Saturday 2nd December
- Last orders, UK: Monday 18th December
- Holidays: the studio is closed between 24th December 2023 and 5th January 2024 inclusive. We will be posting orders during this time, but please allow for delays.
Please do order as early as you can, Shetland weather is unpredictable and can lead to postal services being delayed. Orders made before/on the dates above should reach you by Christmas. We also have gift vouchers, which are delivered digitally.
- UK P&P: £8 per order.
- International (EU deliveries currently suspended) P&P: £20 per order.
- Please note: customers outside the UK are responsible for any customs or tax charges applicable within their own country.
- Collection from Nielanell, Hoswick: free of charge (choose this option at checkout).
Suspension of deliveries to the EU and EEA
From January 2021
Due to the uncertainty regarding the end of Britain's transition period with the EU, we are now suspending deliveries to countries in the EU and the EEA. We are so sorry for this inconvenience and will update the information when we have it.
- Most items should be available. If not, we will contact you to tell when the item will be available.
- We aim to send out your order just as soon as possible and within a week of ordering (at the moment we are shipping once a week). If you need an item sent immediately, just let us know and we will be delighted to try to help you.
- We send out UK items using Royal Mail, items over a value of £100 will be sent by way of special delivery. This is a signed for, insured service.
- Please note, you can also choose to collect your order from Nielanell, Hoswick, using the click-and-collect option. This option is not available during holiday periods.
Nielanell knitwear is designed to last
Here are a few recommendations to help ensure your garment lives a long and happy life:
- Less is more when it comes to washing, many people find quality knitwear can be worn without washing for a long time (feel free to use our advice as a reason to do less laundry!).
- Handwashing your garment is recommended.
- We suggest that you hand-wash your garment using liquid for woollens, or flakes at 30 degrees or less. Harsh detergents are likely to ruin your knitwear.
- You may wish to wash in the machine on a very gentle hand-wash wool cycle at 30 degrees or less, using a small quantity of detergent specifically designed for delicate/wool items—but you need to ensure your washing machine uses a very gentle cycle. You must be confident in using your washing machine for woollens. We will not be responsible for items which shrink or felt by inappropriate machine washing or are damaged through use of regular detergents.
- Do not wring.
- Do not tumble dry.
- Dry flat on a rack or in the fresh air, and steam/press very lightly*.
- Alternatively, you can dry clean the garment.
*Don’t iron Rigg pieces. We also recommend that you do not stretch out the textile when drying. Lie the piece flat, but with a bit of a crumple to allow for the natural spring in the fabric to contract. No need to steam or press.
Each piece of Nielanell knitwear is individually knitted by local manufacturers here in Shetland, and then finished by hand in-house.
Many of our collections are made in very small edition colourways, with a constantly changing selection.
If you’re looking for something in particular, that you can’t see on the website, please do get in touch—we often have more colourways in stock that don’t make it onto the website!
NB Please treat garment measurements as approximate, knitwear can be difficult to measure and each item will differ slightly.