What is the most expensive Cashmere?
Expensiveness is a merely descriptive term for the most valuable things. The fine wool procured from different types of breeds is explicitly soft. The finest of all is Cashmere wool. It is procured from a rare species of goats called Changra Goats. Due to the rarity of goats and low production in a year, Cashmere is exquisitely expensive. The softness and fineness are beyond the world because the fine wool is only 12 to 16 microns in diameter. In addition, the Goats produce fine wool once every year. Therefore, only around 80 to 170 gms of Ladakhi Cashmere are produced during a year and is expensive. Therefore, considered the rarest. Also, other breeds of it produce several times more as there is almost 400 million Cashmere eliciting Goats all over the world. Therefore, Cashmere is one of the most expensive wools.
How is the fine Cashmere procured?
The procurement of the finest Cashmere begins when the herders herd the Cashmere producing goats. In the mountains of Changthanghi Ladakh, a rare breed of goats called the Changra goats dwells. These goats are also called Cashmere Goats. The goats produce a thick layer of wool on their bodies to combat the cold. Gradually, in the summertime, the goats shed off the wool against rocks and trees. The wool is also manually combed out by the Changpa tribe herders. The wool is called fine Cashmere wool. Also, the crafting of fine Cashmere wool into several luxurious accessories is the Pashmina Art.
The process of Pashmina Crafting
The crafting of Pashmina accessories from the finest Cashmere is Pashmina Art. The meticulous process starts as soon as the tufts of Cashmere wool reach the Kashmir Valley. The Cashmere wool is thoroughly cleaned to get the dust and grime out. Afterwards, the clean wool is made to move ahead in the process of Pashmina Art.
The next meticulous step is to transfer the Cashmere wool to local households for the process of Spinning. The women in the households mainly do this job. They spin the Cashmere wool on a wooden wheel or Charkha. It is also called yinder in the local language. The fine Cashmere wool is spun to fine Cashmere yarn by the womenfolk of the valley. The process called pranch is done after the spinning process wherein the fine yarns are swirled on the Thon Schur or wooden stick. Afterwards, the fine Cashmere yarn is moved on to another step.
The weaving of fine Cashmere yarns
The next step is the process of weaving. The weaving process is the harmony of artisans and handloom together. The highly skilled artisans work meticulously on the handloom to make the fine Cashmere fabric. The fine Cashmere yarn is transformed into premium Cashmere fabric by the process of Weaving. After the process of weaving, the premium fabric has devoted a dimension. Thus, crafting a supremely premium Pashmina accessory. The Pashmina accessories are thereby dyed as per the requirement. A wide array of colours are particularly dyed on each Pashmina accessory. The dyeing process is done by the local dyers called Rangurs. They eloquently chromate the Pashmina accessories with the elegance of shades and tones.
There are three main styles of Cashmere accessories
The three main styles in Pashmina Craft are Wraps, Scarves and Pashmina Shawls. The beauty of each style lies in the defined grace of all designs in Pashmina. There are endless designs in Pashmina Craft. The usage of a wide array of colours, patterns, techniques, embellishments and Embroideries make a collection that is in itself a treasure of the culture and heritage of Kashmir Valley.
Also read: CASHMERE SCARF AND SUSTAINABLE FASHION
How did Pashmina come to Kashmir?
The tale is defined by the time when a saint from Central Persia was travelling all over the world to preach Islam in the 13th century. Mir Sayyed Ali Hamdani was travelling to Kashmir with his 700 craftsmen, scholars and teachers. While traversing to Kashmir, he landed his foot in Changhthanghi Ladakh. While his stay in Ladakh, he saw a rare species of Goats with soft wool. He combed out some of the wool and crafted a pair of socks. He was amazed by the warmth of the socks that he took them with him to Kashmir and gifted them to the ruler of Kashmir, Zain-ul-Abideen. Also, he suggested the ruler start procuring the wool from Ladakh and craft it in Kashmir to make mesmerizing accessories that take your mind away to this day.
Also read: AN ESSENCE OF THE MAKING OF PASHMINA SHAWLS
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