It’s the reigning monarch of the textile world’s wool kingdom and it’s certainly not ready to lose its crown any time soon. Least of all, now, when it’s just about to come into its own – although it’s cool in the summer, the frosty months are cashmere’s undeniable zenith.
The wool which is sourced from the eponymous goats found in the Himalayas and the lands surrounding them, has long been a synonymous with luxury and is one of the easiest and stylish ways to get your home winter-ready. Alastair Macdonald of Johnstons of Elgin – a renowned purveyor of luxury cashmere – reveals what makes the fleece particularly luxurious – “the fibre, by natural selection, has evolved to protect the goats from the harsh, cold weather of their natural habitat and provide a natural softness and warmth. [It’s] very fine, which gives a lightness to the finished product.”
So whether it’s an impossibly soft sweater, comforting hot water bottle cover, a pair of toasty socks or an enveloping throw, cashmere in any manifestation will quickly transport you to a suitably cosied up heaven. Although – a word of caution – we wouldn’t recommend trying to experience all at once unless you want to put yourself at severe risk of immediately setting your Out Of Office and writing the day off as a sick day.
And what about paying some lip service to its perennial style status? The yarn has been knitted into iconic forms, paraded down the runway and draped in any interior worth its salt for forever. A centuries-old fashion and interiors favourite, cashmere has found a special place in the hearts of anyone who understands that great design is as much about comfort as it is about aesthetics – both of which the material has shedloads of.
Add into the mix the fact that its supplies are limited – Alastair explains, “the demand [for cashmere] outstrips availability, making the fibre even more exclusive” – and you’ve got yourself a indisputable recipe for greatness. We don’t know about you but we’re going to take it while it the going’s good with these irresistible pieces.