Published on February 22, 2018 14:51 - by Steve Marshall

As August comes to a close, cooler temperatures are headed our way. Warm nights spent outdoors will soon be a thing of the past. Before you know it, you’ll be reaching for a sweater to keep off the chill. So before you run to the store to buy a new cashmere sweater for warmth, we would like to share a few tips on what to look for when making your purchase.

So what is cashmere? Cashmere originates from the under-fleece of goats that live in extremely cold climates. The goats are combed during the spring to remove their fine under-hair as the outer-coat is left intact. The finest cashmere consists of only the longest, thinnest and whitest hair from the under-fleece, whereas lower-quality cashmere may be the shorter or coarser hair from the undercoat.


 Owning a good quality cashmere sweater holds many benefits:

  •  Cashmere provides superb insulation that keeps you warm during the winter and cool in the spring. In fact, cashmere wool can keep you eight times warmer than sheep wool and is much softer to the touch.
  • Cashmere gets softer with age. It is a luxurious, durable and practical investment that, when properly cared for, should last a lifetime.
  • Cashmere sweaters are great travel companions because they are light-weight and don't wrinkle.

 There are a few ways to identify whether or not you are buying a good quality cashmere sweater: 

 Review the sweater’s content label. In order for it to be sold as cashmere, it must state that it is made of 100% cashmere. Due to a limited supply, the cost of cashmere is expensive and many retailers have shifted their product offerings to cashmere blends as a way to reduce these costs. As a result of this, some of the benefits of pure cashmere are lost.

  • Look for tension in the knitting of the sweater by stretching the body. The knitting should ping back into shape. If it doesn't, this suggests the possibility of lower quality fibers or very loose tension when knitted. This is another way for retailers to lower the cost.
  • Hold the sweater up to light. You should not see much light coming through. Although made from the finest hair, cashmere has a density to it.
  • Examine the sweater’s surface. Fluffiness suggests that the yarn was spun from shorter, weaker fibers and will pill.

We hope these tips prove helpful when making your next cashmere purchase.  We hope that our educational newsletters will enable you to be a better consumer. If you found this article helpful, feel free to forward it to anyone whom you feel would benefit.

The next edition of our newsletter will breakdown the various qualities of suits – fused, half-canvas and full-canvas and what it all means.