Cashmere is the most luxurious of fabrics while being the best choice for keeping warm. We have always thought of cashmere as being a delicate fabric that must be given gentle care. However, a recent interview with Brunello Cucinelli reveals a much more enduring quality in garments made from cashmere. The designer, based in Solomeo, Italy believes that well cared for cashmere should last for many years.
Mr. Cucinelli does not send his cashmere sweaters to the dry cleaners unless there is a difficult stain that requires special attention. He believes in hand washing with warm water. It the garment is a print, choose very cold water. He recommends using a tablespoon of a gentle hand soap or soap specifically created for knitwear, diluted in five liters of water. If you want to use a fabric softener, use a natural one such as white vinegar.
Let the garment soak for two to three hours without moving it. Then, gently squeeze out the excess water. Never use a twisting motion. Repeat this process until there is no more soap in the water. Lay the sweater out on a soft towel to dry. If it needs pressing, do not allow the iron to touch the sweater but use a soft cloth between the iron and the garment. By using this process, the appearance of your garment will actually improve and it will become softer.
The ideal way to store your cashmere knits is in a colorless cardboard box with discs of cedar inside. These are a natural fiber and need to breathe. They can be stored in a lightweight fabric garment bag the cardboard box is preferable. Never store your natural fibers in plastic bags.
Just think! That beautiful sweater that you have been dreaming about can last for many years and even be passed down to the next generation. There aren’t many gifts that can be luxurious yet so practical. Enjoy.