September 2016

Garnet Hill Cashmere: Not So Much a Fiber As a Feeling

There is a little-known group of rather brilliant artisans who hand-link the seams of premium cashmere sweaters.

Their work finds its way into the collections of a handful of high-end clothiers in Europe, and just one in the United States: Garnet Hill.

Garnet Hill Cashmere Sweaters. Shirttail Cashmere Sweater.

For years, we’ve procured cashmere sweaters from this family-owned company. The father and son who run it practice a philosophy that mirrors our own: a passion for sublime quality, happy employees, and genuine concern for the environment.

Cashmere Fibers from Inner Mongolia

The herds of Kashmir goats in Inner Mongolia that provide raw fleece for Garnet Hill sweaters are responsibly managed, to conserve the land. Where others mix breeds to increase yield, these animals remain purebred.

The herders are all family businesses, too.
Cashmere Goats from Inner Mongolia

The workspace where our cashmere sweaters are made is energy-efficient and spotless. Solar panels generate 60% of the company’s electricity. At night, before the lights go off, its cool, resin-treated cement floor is saturated with water; during the day, it releases the humidity level that superior cashmere requires in processing.

Father and son came up with that.

Our maker doesn’t tumble-dry cashmere, as most do. The friction of tumble-drying during manufacturing can add two years of wear in 45 minutes. Father and son solved that one, too, inventing a drying process that applies warm and cold air on drying beds. No tumbling, no wear.

Our Eco cashmere colors are entirely unbleached and undyed yarns; the color of the goat’s fleece is the color of your sweater.

The cashmere sweaters we do add color to are dyed with certified eco-friendly German dyes. Greenpeace once invited our dye-maker to show others how to reduce chemicals in water discharge.

We could go on…

But you know what they say about Internet attention spans. By now, you’re probably already picking out a color.

And who can blame you? In the end, cashmere isn’t really about the technical stuff.

It’s not the fiber, it’s the feeling.
Cashmere Goats from Inner Mongolia


8 responses to “Garnet Hill Cashmere: Not So Much a Fiber As a Feeling”

  1. Veronica says:

    Love the story and vision. Thank you both!

  2. Teresa Nossaman says:

    This is incredible and supports everything I believe in. What a great story of Mongolia and the good life of their goats. Yay Greenpeace and folks who care about their environment!

  3. Linda Rone says:

    Love your cashmere. Best of all I have tried.

  4. Sue says:

    This makes me feel good about purchasing your cashmere–Garnethill has superior quality and ethical supply chain??? Wonderful!

  5. Jan says:

    While you mentioned all positive points about the environment, happy employees, solar energy, you failed to mention anything about the treatment and care of the goats !

    • Garnet Hill says:

      Hi Jan, Thanks for inquiring about the welfare of our favorite goats! All are raised by multi-generational native families. The goats’ fleece is never sheared; it’s combed by hand, a process that is painless and actually beneficial. If the warm undercoat was not combed out in springtime, the animals would suffer heat exhaustion in summer, even attempting to remove the hair themselves by rubbing against rocks and trees. To answer a specific question, all Garnet Hill wools (cashmere, merino, etc.) are certified non-mulesed.

      An additional point of reassurance: should winter last especially long, which can happen in Inner Mongolia, our herders are supported with funds for feed and supplies, to ensure that the animals are well cared for.

  6. Nancy Groth says:

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful info!

  7. MARGUERITE SPILLIAS says:

    LOVE THIS WONDERFUL STORY ABOUT THE CASHMERE AND THE GOATS,, OH THEY ARE SO ADORABLE….
    I JUST ORDERED MY FIRST CASHMERE SWEATER AND CANNOT WAIT TO RECEIVE IT..

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