A Guide to Caring for Cashmere
Cashmere offers a moment of quiet luxury in your wardrobe. Known for its unmatched warmth, softness and cosy comfort, it’s a delicate investment that requires a little extra TLC to maintain its luxurious feel and ensure longevity. This doesn’t mean you need to send every knit and scarf off to the dry cleaners. If you’re careful (and know what to do), washing and caring for your cashmere treasures is easily done at home. As for how often they should be washed, once or twice a season is a happy sweet spot.
Gentle Hand Washing
Hand washing is key when dealing with fine fibres like cashmere. Fill a basin with cool to room temperature water and add a small amount of mild PH neutral wool or cashmere-specific detergent. It’s best to turn the garment inside out and gently swirl it around in submerged water. Make sure not to wring, twist and scrub the fabric – remember, gentle is the keyword.
Rinse and Pat Dry with Care
After washing, drain the soapy water and refill the basin with clean cold water. Rinse your cashmere piece until any remnants of detergent are removed. For excess water, lay the cashmere flat on a clean, absorbent towel and roll it up carefully. Press down gently to help the towel absorb any moisture.
Always lay your garment on a clean, dry towel, mesh drying rack or any other flat surface. Be sure not to hang cashmere as it can stretch under its weight. Air dry away from direct sunlight or heat sources and be patient – cashmere can take some time to dry but the wait is well worth it.
Always fold your cashmere items neatly to avoid stretching and stressing the fibres and store them away in a cool, dry place in your wardrobe. Make sure to keep them away from paper or plastic to avoid attracting moths and silverfish – little bugs that eat away at fabrics, especially those high in protein such as silk and woolens. You can even use natural repellents and sachets like dried lavender, thyme, bay leaves and cloves to deter these pesky critters. And if you really need to hang something, make sure to use padded hangers to prevent distortion.
Yes, cashmere may occasionally pill – especially in the first few wears – but this should eventually ease (in the same way a new woolen carpet may pill). For optimal care, we recommend using an electric fabric shaver like the one from Phillips. Unlike manual combs – which are rougher and can damage cashmere – electric shavers and de-pillers are gentle and work effectively to remove pilling with care. It’s important to note, not all cashmere is the same. At Banded Together, our cashmere stands high when it comes to quality, meticulously hand-loomed in Nepal – making it easier to maintain as compared to the majority of cashmere goods commonly found in high street stores.