There are so many reasons to own Cashmere scarves. If you don't know yours, check this write up out.
Gentle breeze, chilly weather, rain, and snow - winter is just a breath away. The season is a means of rejuvenation and relaxation, not just for nature, but for the common people as well. Think about it - the days are short, the nights longer. You can get ample rest and soothe your senses after a scorching and difficult summer heat.
If you think about it, winter is ideal for everyone - from people who like snugly sleep and laze around to people who seek adventure. But then again, it is disliked by a lot many. It is despised by those who don’t like to wear layer upon layer of clothing. It is disapproved of by those who feel too much of cold and above all, it is loathed by the ones who never knew how to shop for winter.
During the winters, you just cannot compromise comfort for fashion. No matter how badly you want to. If you do, you’ll end up freezing in the bitter cold and even falling sick. That is a BIG no-no.
Combination of Comfort and Style
There are plenty of options that combine style, sophistication, and comfort lurking in different parts of the world. All you need is to have a look around. The woes of a sophisticated urban Miss from France are addressed by a remote village in the east, where the temperatures drop to about -15 degrees Celsius and the Changthangi Goat (famous as Capra Hircus) peacefully dwells. The goat produces a special kind of fleece, the finest in the world, around its underbelly. This precious fleece makes the raw material for the luxury Cashmere scarf cherished by royals, nobles, and elites of the past 7 centuries. Does the name strike a chord? Does it sound familiar?
Once this fibre (locally known as Pashm) is translated into an extravagant accessory or a piece of clothing, there is no running away from the winters.
What makes Cashmere Special?
Most of the people who set their hearts on a Cashmere scarf often wonder why it is priced the way it is. Even a seemingly solid Cashmere scarf is priced between $70 to $200. Then if you graduate towards a Kani or embroidered Cashmere, the prices soar to an all-new level.
We, at Pashmina.com, took this question to heart and set out on an adventurous and culturally enriching voyage to the place where the oldest Cashmere spinners and weavers live - Kashmir. The city blooms in spectacular tulips and finds its peace in the quiet murmur of the Jhelum river.
It is along the bank of this river that Cashmere makers live, concentrated in the old Srinagar city.
We saw them at work, bore witness to their lifestyle, and above all, the laborious process hidden behind the folds of a simple Cashmere scarf .
Also read: Why is Cashmere so expensive?
The making of the Cashmere scarf begins in Ladakh where locals harvest the raw Cashmere fibre and clean it manually. This process alone takes up a stretch of 4 to 6 months. The temperatures in Ladakh are not conducive to fine Cashmere. Therefore, the raw material is traded to Kashmir for spinning and weaving.
Upon reaching the valley, it is again cleaned and processed by a group of women who make it suitable to be spun. The fibre is then spun twice to make the Cashmere yarn.
But this is not it. Cashmere yarn is passed onto a Bharangor (a person who straightens the yarn) and then to a weaver who weaves it into the most elaborate shawls, scarves, wraps, and transforms its fate forever. All this might sound simple but it takes over 33 people to make this seemingly simple shawl in a span of 2 to 3 months of meticulous work and sheer skill.
You could say that a Cashmere scarf is special because of its extreme finesse or its rarity. We say otherwise. What makes a Cashmere scarf special is not its molecular structure, location, or metrics, it is the hard work of these people. Each Cashmere shawl you own bears witness to their countless hours of work, will, and dedication.
The Cashmere Which Matches Your Personality
And well, now you know what you are looking for, without sacrificing your style. Right?
From chic sweaters to cozy warm socks, from stylish wraps to elegant shawls, there is a whole universe of Cashmere scarves at your disposal in winters. And guess what? They don’t come in boring colors and the same patterns anymore. There is an exact Scarf that goes with your mood and personality - bold, coy, subtle, lively, or sophisticated. Below are some handpicked Cashmere scarves which are as cool as the temperature (in style) and as warm as warm could get. Let’s unfold them for you.
This style is the manifestation of the old saying 'Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.' They are plain and ideal for the ardent fans of minimalism. Observe a plain Cashmere shawl carefully and you’ll find beautiful patterns of a weave which its maker has carefully crafted. Common ones are the Chasm e Bulbul pattern (translating to the eye of the Bulbul bird) and the herringbone weave. The former is classic and most sought-after in the world.
It is also noteworthy to mention how Cashmere scarves are coloured. The dyes used are either natural or azo-free (free from skin irritants). Before dyeing, a Cashmere may either be beige or white in color. After dye, it is just the way you want it.
Going casual, you can choose a bold and bright tone. Going formal, you can opt for pastels instead. Solid toned pieces of Cashmere are best worn with patterned clothing because they compliment the latter.
After Cashmere has been woven into a shawl or scarf, it is passed onto a different group of artisans who ornate it with unique Kashmiri embroideries. Based upon these embroideries, you can choose which one suits the occasion or your style.
If the shawl is Tilla or Zari embroidered, you can wear it to a party, festival, or even a wedding because it is all blingy and glamorous.
If the shawl is Sozni embroidered (the most intricate thread work ever known to Kashmiris), its pattern will tell you when you can wear it. For instance, there is Jamawar (which features heavy embroidery throughout the length and breadth of the shawl). You can wear this statement piece for weddings or festivals.
Then there is the Jaalidar Sozni Cashmere shawl. These pieces are also full of embroidery, but they aren’t as heavy as a Jamawar. You can team them up with a plain and minimal dress or reserve them for a formal dinner. Alternatively, if you treasure embroideries, you can even wear them regularly. The choice is yours.
The next in line is Shahpasand or Dordaar Cashmeres. These shawls have their borders outlined in a minimal manner. Since they are not loud, you can wear them to your office.
No matter what your personality type, when it is graced by the presence of Persian motifs like paisleys and roses captured in Kashmiri embroidery, there is nothing else you would want to wear!
Kani shawls were first set into vogue by Empress Josephine when she was gifted one by her husband Napolean. Ever since they have remained the choice of the royals and the elite. What sets them apart is the fact that it takes an artisan 6 months to complete a basic Kani shawl. The wrap is made with the help of tiny sticks or bobbins locally known as Kanis. Each shawl uses between 80 to 200 of these sticks. The efforts and skills required to weave a single Kani shawl are commendable.
Even among Kanis, the most sought after are whites, reds, and blacks.
If you own a Kani shawl, preserve it for extremely special occasions. Your wrap is truly one of a kind and will turn heads whenever you wear it.
When it’s time to hit the chic mode, there is nothing that is as conveniently stylish as a reversible Scarf. As the name suggests, these wraps have two colours (often contrasting) rooted in their essence. Feeling low? Turn the bright side on. Want to tone down for the occasion? Turn the subtle side on.
Now here is the amazing part - you can use the same wrap for formal as well as casual occasions. All you need to do is flip to the bright side when hanging out with your friends and flip it over to the sober side when attending an office meeting. We call them synonyms of versatility.
And Tres chic!
Cashmere scarves are a class apart. So are Swarovski studs. What if the two could blend?
Well, Pashmina.com has already made your dream come true by partnering with Swarovski and some of the most skilled Pashmina weavers from Kashmir Valley to create an exclusive range of Swarovski studded Cashmere wraps. These wraps are ideal when you hit the party mode or when you are about to join the glitterati because they combine the grace of Cashmere with the bling and timeless lustre of an original Swarovski.
Ombre Cashmere scarf
Cashmere scarves have seen many style evolutions in recent times. Among them, the pattern of Ombre is to die for. Ombre is actually a French trend that is followed through and through in the fashion industry - be it in hair colours or clothing. When the French fad blends with the timeless grace of a Kashmiri Cashmere wrap, made with years of traditional wisdom, the end result is an Ombre Cashmere. Its colours gradiate like magic, enveloping you in warmth, grace, and style. Ombre wraps are best worn casually - on your shopping sprees or vibrant moods!
Patterned Cashmere scarf
Is a fashion show even complete without the presence of classic stripes and checks? Well, the vogue for stripes and checks is here to stay and slay. The two urban patterns are a city girl’s best friends. They are versatile and you can practically wear them everywhere - to your workplace, shopping trips, day out with friends and family, and even to the ramp. They suit everyone, always remain in style and you can conveniently pair them with everything. When they are clubbed with the warmth and finesse of a pure Cashmere scarf, there is absolutely every reason you’ll have to add them to your winter closet.
Lace Cashmere scarf
French Chantilly Laces have been considered the epitome of feminine fashion ever since they were first conceptualized. They signify a delicate and gentle personality. When coupled with Cashmere, there create wraps that are the reflection of sophistication.
How Pashmina.com Uplifts Kashmiri Pashmina Makers?
Pashmina.com empowers the grass-root Pashmina spinners, weavers, and contributors with the ability to showcase their products directly to a global audience. It bridges the gap between a Cashmere lover who seeks nothing but an original masterpiece and a grassroots artisan who wants to be recognized for his work and earn his due share of earnings. When you buy a Pashmina from Pashmina.com, you are not just shopping. Rather, you are eliminating an intermediary, eliminating the fakes and replicas which have tarnished the market, and above all, you are eliminating the powerful factory owners who have infected this elaborate art form with cheap synthetic infected variations of their own.
At Pashmina.com, an artisan gets to decide the price of his/her product without having to share his/her earnings with any intermediary. Each purchase you make directly improves their livelihood and elevates their standard of living. The artisans associated with Pashmina.com, are always paid upfront in order to motivate them to keep working at their craft. Your purchase sparks hope in their hearts. It encourages them to do better.
Not only this, the designers at Pashmina.com ensure that an artisan knows exactly what the modern buyer wants so that they can align their products accordingly.
Today, Pashmina.com has become the face of the Kashmiri artisan who now feels confident and positive. Not only this, we complete our promise of empowerment when we equip the buyer with all the knowledge he/she needs before owning a Pashmina.
Do you realize how powerful that is?
Also read: Pure Pashmina - Myths and Facts