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Topic: cashmere ?'s  (Read 926 times)
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« on: January 10, 2008 09:39:49 AM »

so, I'm just wondering why it is that cashmere is so expensive? and where does it come from?  can it only be found on the top of mt. everest, so it's very rare, and very hard to get?  I love the stuff, and may, one day in the far off future, after I've perfected my spinning technique that I haven't even learned yet, spin with some mixed with wool.  but I don't understand why it's so darnd expensive?? 

and has anyone here spun with it? is it as fabuolos to spin as it is to knit?


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« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2008 12:16:09 PM »

It comes from the Cashmere goat.
Quote from wikipedia "Sometimes the fine fibers are collected by combing the goat; either method is time consuming and tedious, thus the high cost of cashmere."

I haven't spun with it yet but it's soooo soft, I'd like to one day.
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2008 01:43:58 PM »

maybe I should buy a goat? lol if I only had the space huh?

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« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2008 06:06:32 PM »

My bf would like to have a pet goat one day Smiley  Maybe I should try to convince him that it should be the cashmere type.  We dont have a yard for it yet.
« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2008 06:04:12 AM »

I have spun cashmere and its a dream, however due to ecological hazzards I have been boycotting cashmere until the raising of these goats is more closely monitored and the desertification is stopped. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2003498352_cashmere282.html

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« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2008 06:15:38 AM »

A lot of what you see is markup, multiple dealer pass-through, plus countervailing / anti-dumping duty, which is a special tax that the USA imposes on import goods to protect the price.
Cashmere should never be more expensive then quiviut and I have seen it marked way the heck up. It's goat fur. Nothing wild or amazingly special. Beautiful, sure... warm, sure, great to work with, sure - but worth $150 an ounce?! Doubtful.
I've made chinchilla fur in to "yarn" (more like thread), albeit 4" pieces, if you want to talk soft!
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2008 08:37:28 AM »

It's expensive compared to wool because you get a lot less per goat!  You get a few ounces from each goat, because you only use part of the coat.  (You know how a lot of animals have a lot of coarse hairs to shed water, and then a fine down underneath them to trap air?  Cashmere is that down from goats.)  In contrast, you get kilos of fleece per sheep per shearing, and most of that will be usable from most modern breeds (Icelandic and a few other northern breeds have the same double coat as goats).  $150/oz is taking the mick, though (unless it's something really special!) - I know I can get white superfine here in the UK for 13/100g, and coloured and lower grades are cheaper.

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« Reply #7 on: January 11, 2008 12:38:41 PM »

I have never heard of cashmere going for $150 an ounce. I've found it for around $10-30 an ounce.
While I agree that alot of the cost of commercial cashmere comes from mark ups and whatnot, the  high cost comes from the fact that an individual casmere goat produces only about a half pound of useable fiber a year.

About the boycott: There is still domestic cashmere from local farms and they are not in any way shape or form contributing to the dust problem.

Also, this I'm not 100% sure on so maybe someone here can verify or debunk, but I think that while there is a breed of goat called the cashmere goat, cashmere fiber can come from any goat as long as it's the down fibers and meets a certain fineness.

As for expensive, there are some fibers that make cashmere look downright economy. Vicuna goes for around $200 an ounce, and guanaco, buffalo (bison actually) and qiviut goes for around $30 an ounce.
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