Cashmere is a luxurious and coveted fabric that is known for its softness, warmth, and durability. It is made from the fine, soft hairs of the cashmere goat, which are collected during the animal's natural shedding process. In this post, we will explore the three non-negotiables of cashmere: price, care, and craftsmanship.
Non-Negotiable #1: Price
The price of a cashmere garment is a reflection of the time, resources, and expertise required to produce it. It is impossible to create a high-quality cashmere sweater without investing in these factors, and therefore it is not realistic to expect to find a quality sweater for significantly less than $350.
The process of producing cashmere involves a great deal of labor, including the careful combing of the goats to collect the fine hairs, the sorting and cleaning of the fibers, and the spinning of the fibers into yarn. The yarn is then used to knit or weave the finished cashmere products. This process is time-consuming and requires skilled labor, which adds to the cost of the finished product. In order to produce a cashmere sweater at prices lower than $350, producers would need to significantly reduce their costs, which results in a lower-quality finished product. Some ways producers look to cut costs include non-livable wages for employees, unethical treatment of the animals, and over production causing soil erosion and desertification. For more information, read The Cheap Cashmere Crisis.
Non-Negotiable #2: Care
Cashmere is a delicate fabric, and it requires special care to maintain its softness, warmth, and longevity. No matter the quality, all cashmere sweaters will pill, and need to be cared for properly. Pilling is a natural process that happens to wool garments over time, and it is not a sign of poor quality. However, it can be annoying and unsightly, and it is important to take steps to minimize pilling.
To care for your cashmere sweater, it is important to follow these tips:
- Hand wash or machine wash using a mesh laundering bag using the gentlest cycle.
- Use a gentle detergent specifically designed for cashmere or wool. Avoid using regular laundry detergent, as it can be harsh and strip the fibers of their natural oils.
- Lay your cashmere sweater flat to dry. Avoid wringing or twisting the fabric, as this can cause it to stretch or lose its shape.
- Store your cashmere sweater in a cool, dry place. Avoid hanging it, as this can cause the fabric to stretch or lose its shape. Instead, fold it and store it in a drawer or on a shelf.
By following these care instructions, you can help ensure that your cashmere sweater stays soft, warm, and beautiful for years to come.
Non-Negotiable #3: Craftsmanship
The craftsmanship of a cashmere garment is also a key factor in determining its quality. This includes the selection of the raw materials, the spinning of the yarn, and the knitting or weaving of the fabric. A well-crafted cashmere sweater will be made with attention to detail, and will be free of defects or imperfections. It will also have a high level of durability and will be able to withstand wear and tear without losing its shape or softness. When looking for a cashmere sweater, it is important to look for one that has been crafted with care and attention to detail, as this will ensure that you get a garment that will last for years to come.
By considering these factors when shopping for a cashmere sweater, you can be sure that you are getting a high-quality garment that will provide you with years of warmth and comfort. Whether you are looking for a luxurious sweater to wear on special occasions or a casual sweater to wear every day, a well-made cashmere sweater is a timeless investment that will never go out of style.