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Reader question: Cashmere suits

22 April 2013

 

Dear Simon,

Hello and congratulations on your blog’s recent milestone!

I have a question regarding cashmere suits.

I am thinking of buying a suit that is 100% cashmere.  Now I have come across many suits that are wool/cashmere blends, but not many that are 100% cashmere.

Is a suit that is completely cashmere practical? Will there be a lot of pilling, like there is with a cardigan for instance?

Thanks for your help.

Yours,

Farbod 

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Hi Farbod,

This touches on a question someone asked about ultra-fine wools on my post about Huddersfield mills last week. 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 jacket, which has internal structure in the chest to hold it together. But it is terrible in trousers. They have no chance of retaining a crease, and begin to bag at the knees after a while.

I know because I made that mistake with my first commission from Sartoria Vergallo. The jacket is great, but the trousers have lost shape very quickly. I still occasionally wear it as a suit, but mostly just as a jacket – it has patch pockets and brown horn buttons so works well in that regard.

I would avoid wool/cashmere mixes most of the time as well, at least for suits.

Simon