The Complete Guide to Shopping for and Owning Cashmere

The Complete Guide to Shopping for and Owning Cashmere

Ah… cashmere! It makes the softest and most luxurious sweaters ever. Treat yourself to a cashmere sweater this season! Here's the complete guide to shopping for and owning cashmere.

Cashmere 101

If you're new to owning cashmere, you're about to go on a wardrobe adventure! A cashmere sweater is one of the most beautiful investment pieces that you can add to your wardrobe. First, a bit about the fiber itself. Cashmere wool, usually simply known as cashmere, is a fiber obtained from goats—cashmere goats or pashmina goats to be exact. Cashmere wool has stronger and longer fibers than other types of wool. Only the softest fibers are collected for cashmere. They often come from the bellies of cashmere goats. The fibers are then washed and separated, keeping the softest of the soft which are then made into sweaters, pashminas, and gloves, among other luxury items. With the proper care, your cashmere will last for years to come.

Choosing Your Cashmere

When choosing a cashmere garment, be sure to inspect it closely. The fibers should be super soft with that fluffy cashmere look. The color should be perfectly even throughout the garment. All seams in the garment should be even and properly finished. When picking out a cashmere sweater, think about what colors look great on you and where you'll want to wear it. Cashmere has a history of being dressy, but you can also add cashmere to your everyday wardrobe. It will make you look and feel great whether you’re on a zoom call with your colleagues or running errands about town.

Cashmere sweaters come in all styles from crew neck sweaters to cashmere cardigans to tunic sweaters. A cashmere tunic paired with black leggings and cute flats is an instant outfit that will take you anywhere.

Comely in Cashmere

When wearing your gorgeous sweater, think of it as the focal point of your outfit. It's so pretty that you'll want the rest of your outfit to be a blank canvas that emphasizes it. Wearing all-black or all-winter white with a cashmere sweater is a great way to go. For an incredible winter look, wear a winter white cashmere sweater with a winter white skirt or pants and winter white boots.

For a classic and easy look, pull your favorite black pencil skirt, black tights, and flats and pair them with a crew neck cashmere sweater in winter white or a beautiful pastel. A cashmere cardigan will dress up any outfit from jeans and a tank top to black dress pants, a silk shell, and your favorite black heels.

Caring for Your Cashmere

As a natural fiber, cashmere is beautiful and breathes. It also takes just a bit more care than your synthetic blends that will go from the washer to the dryer to your closet. Never toss your cashmere into a laundry hamper with other clothing. Keep it separate. Cashmere care starts with avoiding stains and stretching. Read the manufacturer’s instructions and always follow them. Most cashmere garments can be either dry cleaned or hand-washed. Hand-washing is a bit more work, but it will actually expose your cashmere to fewer chemicals.

To hand-wash cashmere, start with a basin of clean, cold water. Use a small amount of the mildest laundry detergent you can find. Swish your sweater in the soapy suds but be gentle. Drain out the soapy water and rinse in clean cold water. When the soap is out, gently squeeze your sweater, but don’t wring it out. Reshape it and dry it on a drying rack or clean, dry towels. Make sure that your sweater is completely dry before refolding it and putting it away.

Storing Your Cashmere

When you're ready to store your cashmere at the end of the season, start with clean, dry cashmere. You'll want to keep it in a dry area that is as close to room temperature as possible. Bear in mind that heat rises when thinking of where to store it. The shelf of a spare bedroom closet or low-traffic storage closet on the main floor of your home is ideal. Avoid attics, basements, and bathroom closets at all costs. Consider storing your cashmere in a sweater box or storage bin that has a lid to keep it free from dust. If your climate tends to be humid, add a small desiccant packet to your storage bin to keep the air dry, but make sure that this doesn’t touch the fibers (ink from the outside of the packet could potentially stain your sweater).

Cashmere is a wonderful wardrobe investment. With a bit of planning and special care, you will enjoy wearing your cashmere sweaters for years to come.


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