Everything about pashmina wool items
Pashmina wool is nothing but a sheer Cashmere wool obtained from the chest of the animal, from the part where you can find the silkiest, the thinnest, and the longest hair (i.e the most beautiful ones). Incidentally, the word “Pashmina” means “Cashmere wool” in the Nepalese language. Consequently, the Pashmina wool is the sheerest part of a piece of Cashmere wool.
However, most people believe that a “Pashmina” is a stole very thinly woven, like an open weave. There is a confusion between the accessory (shawl) and the texture (the Pashmina). Furthermore, the “Pashmina” is not an official trade mark in Europe (the opposite to the Cashmere wool): consequently, you can find shawls stamped “pashmina” when they are made in a traditional wool or in polyester item.
deals only with Pashminas (i.e shawls) made with Pashmina wool (i.e 100% Cashmere wool) or a mix of Pashmina wool and silk (70% Pashmina wool and 30% silk).
In the past, the mountain people of Nepal gathered clumps of hair from wild she-goats (also called Changrya in native places) left on bushes or sharp rocks in the springtime. This special collection was then transported to the valley.
At this stage, it was declared to be "Pashmina" due to the local designation of the Cashmere wool. The product was then exported towards the region where the Indian Cashmere wool resided.
This country became the reference point for the weaving of this fabric and the name "Pashmina" was attributed to it. The Pashmina wool was also woven into shawls for the nobles and gentry to purchase.
The expertise is still in existence to create this material. This ancestral tradition requires the strict weaving of the shawls into a finger-ring. It is this original style of weaving that spurned the phrase "ring Pashmina".
Pashmina wool is also named gold fibre due to its quality and rarity. Pashmina
wool shawls are famous for being specially hand crafted, and are easily identified by their long knotted ends with frayed fringes. In order to create this trade mark feature much time and effort needs to be placed into production.
At the end of the 90s, certain A-list Hollywood stars - like Nicole Kidman and Angelina Jolie - were reported to be wearing Pashmina wool shawls. As is usually the case, the fact that such high profile people were seen wearing Pashmina, caused the garments popularity to increase. The trend of sporting Pashmina Shawls extended from the United States and then through Europe.
The term "Pashmina" then, refers to a thin fringed shawl (as can be seen in the above picture). Yet, there is no trademark or copyright that currently exists for the custom templates. Consequently, it is common for items claiming to be “100% Pashmina” that are actually made from viscose, wool or cotton.
According to the tradition, authentic Pashmina wool items are hand weaved on looms, using the most beautiful Cashmere wool, or a mix of Cashmere Wool and Silk (around 70% Cashmere wool and 30% silk).
Various textures of Pashmina wool :
Pashmina and Cashmere wool need the same care if you want to get soft Cashmere wool, you should use the best hair from the animal; the thinnest being 15.5mm or less, and the longest over 50 mm.
We work with 2 types Pashmina wool in terms of softness:
: Made exclusively with the thinnest Cashmere wool possible. However, the fabric is not too thin to be manufactured. The smoothness of its texture is exquisite. As the Rolls Royce of all Pashmina items, products made from this material can be found in stores for around 300 Euros. Consider it as an exceptional gift, or a treat for your own pleasure.
: The same quality of the Cashmere wool is used for the "diamond" softness, but silk is integrated into the Cashmere wool for a part of 30% against 70% for wool. The texture of this material is similar to the "diamond" softness, yet it has more of a silky feel. The weaving is thinner, but has no transparency. You may realise that the result remains absolute. If you wrap yourself in this delightful silky material, you will feel thoroughly pampered.
Where are clothes and Pashminas made ?
A high proportion of the pullovers that are traded worldwide are made in China. However, there is a strong tradition of Jersey production in Scotland and Italy (although the prices do tend to be higher).
At Mahogany the majority of our Pashminas are produced in Nepal. As a cultural melting pot at the centre of wool production culture, this country is the perfect location for the production of our garments.
The Cashmere wool handcraft is one of the rare skills that can be found in this wonderful country. Rich in culture, both religious and secular, this exciting place is not only the perfect place for the production of our materials, it is also a great place to visit. The locals are predominantly Hindu or Buddhist, and welcome visitors warmly. We feel extremely privileged to be able to provide jobs to the people of Nepal and boost their economy.
Our establishment in Nepal is located close to Kathmandu. The business here is directed by Nepalese people, who are not only able to get the best from the workers within their locality, but are also acutely aware of the intricate way western business is conducted. It is forbidden from employing children under the age of 15 years old.
It is no surprise that we pay a higher price for workers from this region, compared to those from China. Currently our products are not manufactured on production lines as is the custom in China. It is imperative that our products are handcrafted for the most part; this will always be more expensive than manufacture via production line. However, the extra cost enables us to work with a wide range of quality products, as well as improving the economic fortunes of many Nepalese families.