Cashmere is a byword of luxury; it sings of softness and the natural fibres offer warmth without being heavy. Purchasing an article of cashmere clothing can feel a little luxurious in itself—high quality often comes with a high price tag after all. However, handle your delicate garment with care and it will stay super-soft and silky smooth.
Tips for storing cashmere clothing
Whether you treat yourself to a stylish sweater or a charming cardigan, you won’t be wearing your cashmere every day (although you may want to). So, you will need to think about storage.
Firstly, always fold your cashmere—hanging is a real no-no and can pull your garment out of shape. Garments are best folded and kept in drawers, but be vigilant! Cashmere is like caviar to moths and they love the peace and quiet of a dark drawer, so this could be a tempting resting place and a gourmet supper all in one.
Ensure you open drawers and pull out your cashmere regularly between wears. If you’re not going to be sporting your beloved garment for a while, keep it fresh with careful washing and drying. Then fold and store it in a garment protection bag. You can also insert tissue paper to discourage creases.
Cotton is the best material for clothing storage bags, as it allows the delicate material to breathe. There’s a nice cotton clothing bag from the White Company here.
Keep your cashmere clothing somewhere free from moisture and make sure it’s not too squashed!
Sealed storage protection bags are also useful for deterring moths and pests. Cedar wood is a great repellent, and it’s readily available. Pop a couple of balls into the protection bag and drawers for peace of mind. If you don’t have any cedar balls already, you can get a collection of balls and blocks such as the collection shown below. For some more tips on preventing moths from eating your clothes, see this article.
How to wash cashmere
When it comes to washing your garment, please remember the golden rule of cashmere ownership: wear your cashmere sweater or cardigan with pride but be sure to turn it inside out before washing.
Cashmere can draw aromas and stains easily so keeping it clean is important. Pests are less attracted to clean clothes, so are less likely to try and nibble your cashmere if it’s nice and fresh.
Gentle is the keyword here. Washing by hand is ideal, just make sure you do not pull, wring or stretch your garment.
You can wash some cashmere garments in your faithful washing machine, but please be careful. If you decide to do this, be sure to check your machine is on the right setting – woollens, delicates or hand-wash – and make sure you use a detergent that is suitable for cashmere.
Don’t take garments out sopping wet either; a gentle spin cycle should help remove excess water. Dry your cashmere carefully; don’t hang it out with the tea-towels and pants, it’s far too precious for that! Lay it out gently, away from bright sun.
You could also consider dry cleaning, particularly useful if you have managed to get an unsightly stain on your item.
Removing pilling (bobbles)
Despite careful care of your garment you may still experience pilling, the tiny fluffy bobbles you can encounter on cashmere. You might think an expensive garment should not suffer such an affliction, but pilling is actually caused by the delicacy of the fibres and friction of wear.
It’s easy to de-fluff your garment by gently removing the bobbles yourself using your finger and thumb. Alternatively clever gadgets exist; you can try a cashmere comb or a fabric shaver. Both are readily available to buy and should easily return your favourite sweater to its former glory. Check out our roundup of the best fabric shavers, or take a look at the Catherine Robinson Cashmere Comb on Amazon below:
If you care for your cashmere will a delicate touch, store it well, wash it gently and de-fluff it now again you should be able to keep it looking as good as new and continue enjoying the luxurious smoothness, so soft you will want to hug yourself.