How do you get a warm and soft sweater or an elegant pashmina from raw cashmere? And how exactly do you even get cashmere?
It is only thanks to the cashmere goat living in the Himalayan plateaus that luxurious and comfortable cashmere scarves exist. The goats adapted to living at high altitudes and in tough weather conditions. In their natural habitat, temperatures in the drop fall to around -40 °C. They developed a soft and thick coat to protect them against these conditions. The collection of cashmere wool begins at the beginning of spring, when the goats shed their rich and soft undercoat. Traditionally, cashmere wool is collected by gathering tufts that can be found on rocks and bushes that the goats rub against in order to rid themselves of the warm winter cover. Locals collect these precious tufts and sell them to processing plants. However, the most significant portion of the production material comes from farms where the wool is collected by combing.
Only the undercoat is used to produce cashmere, since the upper part of the coat contains fibres that are too rigid and not appropriate for weaving or knitting clothing. It is also important to mention that only about 150 grams of cashmere are collected from a single goat, which means multiple goats are necessary to produce a single article of clothing. Globally, around 15,000 tons of cashmere are collected annually, and it is a rare, valued, and premium fabric.
The raw cashmere is washed and sorted (lesser-quality fibres are scrapped). Afterwards a yarn is woven out of them, which is then dyed and dried. What follows is the most important part of the process - making the final product. This is done either by hand, or some steps are done by machines. The products we offer in our store are woven (shawls, pashminas) or knitted (sweaters) by hand. Some sweaters from the basic collection are an exception, as these are still made from the highest quality cashmere fibres, but the production is partially automatized.
Every product is an original that went through many hours of honest labour. The production of cashmere has a long tradition in Asia, as the warm wool is a necessity for the inhabitants of the Himalayas and the surrounding area.