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About Cashmere Quality
Manufacturing Cashmere Clothing
The most important starting point when manufacturing a fine quality cashmere garment is to select the best possible cashmere yarn. Cashmere yarns vary greatly in quality, and like diamonds you can buy cheap quality or top quality.
Cashmere is a natural fibre with the finest quality originating from the undercoat of goats living in the very cold climate of Mongolia. The hair is taken once a year during the spring when the weather is warmer. One goat generally provides enough fine hair each year to make half a sweater, so it is understandable that the finest quality cashmere products can be very expensive.
Good quality knitting machines play an important part in the manufacturing process. Poor quality machinery will not produce top quality cashmere garments. Loosely knit, limp fabric is the hallmark of a cheaply made garment. You should be able to pull a cashmere garment and it will spring back into shape easily.
Pure 100% cashmere clothing should not be excessively soft when new as it actually becomes softer, developing a beautifully gentle, fluffy bloom with wearing and regular gentle washing. Darker shades of cashmere, like navy blue or black may not be as soft as paler ones due to the dying process. It is normal to expect a certain amount of pilling or bobbling when the garment is new, particularly in areas that get rubbed. It is sensible to avoid wearing cashmere jumpers that are tightly fitting as rubbing is more likely then. If cashmere is extremely fluffy when new it is a sign of over-milling, and it may wear quickly.
Cashmere can be blended easily with other fibres like silk, cotton and other wools. Silk blends very well with cashmere and gives garments a gorgeous sheen and drape. Silk is a firm fibre so the silk & cashmere blended garments do not feel as soft as 100% cashmere, but they do feel very smooth. Silk is a less expensive raw material than cashmere so a garment made from a silk cashmere blend should be cheaper than the 100% cashmere garment. Cotton blended with cashmere will produce a lower priced, garment with some of the characteristics, luxury and kindness of cashmere.