Why Cashmere is One of the Most Sought-After Fabrics in the World

Smiling Blonde Woman Cashmere Sweater
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You can instantly recognize the distinctive quality of cashmere. It has a well-earned reputation as being symbolic of luxury and comfort.

When you have Cashmere sweaters in your wardrobe, they quickly become one of your most prized items of clothing in your collection. What is it that makes cashmere one of the most sought-after fabrics money can buy?

Where Does Cashmere Come From?

To truly understand why genuine cashmere items can command a premium price tag it helps to understand where one of the softest fibers in the world comes from.

A common misconception is that cashmere comes from sheep. In fact, it is the Cashmere goat that is responsible for providing the fine hairs that are woven into something that is beautifully soft to the touch.

The Cashmere goat lives in the Himalayas. The climate there can reach sub-zero temperatures of almost -30C. It is this freezing habitat that has led the goat to evolve into an animal that carries amazing protection from the elements in the form of an incredibly luxurious and thick coat.

These goats have two layers of hair. Thick and wiry hairs grow on the outside to protect the supremely soft undercoat. The fundamental problem is each goat can only produce a small amount of these fibers each year. 

That is why cashmere accounts for less than 1% of annual global wool production. It is this rarity factor that justifies why the price of cashmere is so high compared to regular woolen products.

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A Lot of Work is Needed to Process the Cashmere Harvested

Not only is its rarity a factor that is reflected in the price of a cashmere garment, but it is also the fact that it involves a lot of work to process the raw material into the finished article.

The fibers are initially dyed to the required color whilst being constantly aerated to ensure they don’t clump together during the process.

You can’t use chemicals or subject the fibers to too much processing, or the fibers will get damaged. That means time and patience are required in order to keep the quality as high as possible.

When the cashmere is ready to be spun into yarn, it will also be graded according to its length and fineness. The very best cashmere hairs can be as thin as fourteen micrometers.

Model Coat Cashmere Scarf Fall Fashion
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Is All Cashmere The Same Quality?

The simple answer is no. You can find cheaper cashmere products available that claim to be of comparable quality to the best around. However, these power-priced versions will almost certainly have compromised on the quality by using a lower grade of cashmere, or they may have used a cheaper processing method to keep the price down.

The bottom line is that the best cashmere is unmistakable when you see and feel the level of quality. You simply can’t compromise or cut corners to get the best possible cashmere quality.

Some cheaper products even mix other animal hairs, such as yak hairs, to try and pass off their products as cashmere. 

The bottom line is that when it comes to genuine cashmere products. You really do get what you pay for. The genuine article will have been expensive to harvest and produce, but the end result will be well worth the effort. In fact, well worth paying good money for a beautiful cashmere garment that will give you many years of pleasure.

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