If you’re lucky enough to have a cashmere wrap in your closet, then you already know just how soft and comfortable luxury fabrics can be. Nothing else seems to come close in terms of luxury and warmth. A high quality cashmere garment can also last you a very long time - and even grow softer.
But all of this comes at a price. If you’re considering the purchase of a cashmere coat, you’ll need to decide if 100% cashmere is best. Or, if you should be considering a blend instead.
Cashmere is a type of wool, but one that is exceptionally fine and soft. It addition, it is very strong and light. When compared to sheep’s wool, cashmere provides about three times the insulating power.
But the finer a wool becomes, the more it loses body and elasticity; it loses some of the elements that make wool such a great material for clothing.
Cashmere is even worse. It is wonderfully soft, but this means it has very little body and memory. This can be OK in a sweater. But it can be terrible in a coat. It has no chance of retaining a crease, and lost shape very quickly.
So, is a 100% cashmere coat a bad idea?
From a clothing perspective, what you should know is that cashmere isn’t going to have the same body and elasticity that a wool fiber will have. Cashmere makes for a great sweater or wrap because the fit isn’t such a big deal, but a coat needs needs to hold its shape.
A wool and cashmere blended coat may be the best choice as you’ll gain the benefits of each fabric. The best choice, is a 10% blend (90% wool and 10% cashmere). The cashmere will add warmth and softness while the wool will provide the body and elasticity that a coat needs.