We've been studying cashmere for a while in regard to quality ranges and collaborations with the right company, to give you a chance to experience the exhilarating pleasure of wearing pure cashmere—a rare and precious material with incredible softness when worn directly on the skin (not to mention the unique insulation properties of keeping you warm in the winter and cool during spring, summer evenings, and autumn).
Thus today we are delighted to make this collaboration happen with the help of our friends of the great sartorial house of Yeossal in Singapore, and to offer two high quality items (a mock neck sweater and a sleeveless cardigan) at very competitive prices.
The sweater (now available in two colours, beige and navy blue) is priced at €219 and the sleeveless cardigan at €229. Considering the quality of the cashmere we curated with Yeossal for this collaboration, we believe this is a great chance to treat yourself, maybe for the first time, with a high-level sweater which, if properly maintained, should last a lifetime. After a review of the market price range for similar quality cashmere items, we witnessed the average cost for high level cashmere sweater to be typically in the €300 to €500 price bracket and (much) higher if the logo of a global luxury brand is attached.
The fact we launch this wonderful collaboration in mid-April is not innocent. Many people falsely believe that cashmere is a winter material, yet cashmere is made to be worn during all seasons. It is hygroscopic (meaning it adapts to the external temperature and to the body temperature) and is naturally breathable. It will keep you cool when it’s relatively warm, wicking moisture away from the body. Thus, it is a great garment for spring, summer evenings, and autumn, so you won’t miss the stunning aesthetic of a sweater (especially under a tailored jacket) and the unique sensation of pure cashmere on the skin.
Cashmere is the fine hair from the undercoat of cashmere goats. Most cashmere comes from the goats of Mongolia and China as the harsh climate, where winters can be -40 degrees Celsius, forced the cashmere goats to adapt to the climate by developing a double fleece. There is an outer guard layer that protects the undercoat from water, and an undercoat made of ultra-fine hairs with strong insulating properties. This undercoat is what produces cashmere.
Not all cashmere goats are created equal though. Inner Mongolia is generally seen as the best origin for cashmere, due to the harsher winters which produce the longest, thinnest and softest hair. The longer fibers of Inner Mongolian cashmere also reduce the chance of fabric shedding and unsightly piling.
When spring comes, the goats are combed and the undercoat harvested. A regular goat will produce very little quantity of undercoat fleece per year: between 150 and 250 gr. This simple fact explains why this noble material is rare and more expensive than regular wool (when harvesting wool, the sheep is sheared whereas the goat is generally only combed).
For this collaboration, we selected with Yeossal a luxurious premium cashmere :
- “Inner” Mongolia Cashmere.
- 2-ply, 2/60 Nm.
Ply is the number of cashmere threads twisted together to make cashmere yarn. Two twisted threads are referred to as 2-ply, and three twisted threads are referred to as 3-ply, etc (2-ply being the best choice for spring-summer-autumn). Since cashmere is a fine hair, a 2-ply twisted fiber will increases strength properties.
60 Nm, (i.e., “normal metric”) describes the ratio between the weight and the length of a single thread. The higher the number, the finer the thread and better the quality. 26 Nm is the most common on the market (used for economy cashmere), while 48Nms is considered luxury cashmere (a.k.a. "second skin cashmere"). The cashmere curated for this collaboration is a whopping 60 Nms which corresponds to what some people call "Grade A cashmere" — even if, sometimes, this appellation is overused by vendors who try to sell less refined cashmere at luxurious prices.
- 16 gauge with a very fine fibre of 15,5 microns (exceptional for spring-summer-autumn).
Gauge refers to the number of stitches or rows per inch and is a measure of how tightly the item is knitted. The higher the gauge number, the tighter the knit and the more cashmere yarn being used.
Cashmere garments are commonly knitted in 7 gauge (7GG) and 12 gauge (12GG). Our cashmere is knitted in 16 gauge (i.e, more cashmere is used).
As you can notice, the cashmere curated for this collaboration is of desirable quality. And if correctly cared for (with cold hand-wash or delicate machine wash), these garments can last a lifetime.
We wanted to design a sweater with a clean sartorial look and feel (i.e, which can be worn with suits or sport jackets, replacing the dress shirt from time to time), while remaining very versatile in order to work well with casual outfits.
In terms of style, we decided to opt for what we believe to be the most elegant model for a three-season sartorial sweater: the mock neck.
Indeed, the classic turtle neck would have been too warm (with the neck fully covered) and the lower-cut crew neck does not work as well with a suit or a jacket.
In order to illustrate the versatility of this sweater (available in beige or navy blue), I wear the mock neck with the following: a selvedge denim, a pair of light wool and linen trousers, a blazer, a three-season suit, and a summer suit.
This mock neck can be especially useful and elegant at night during summer on the terrace, in the courtyard, or by the swimming pool, when the temperature dips and you need light knitwear to remain comfortable. Unlike synthetic fibers which can leave you hot and sweaty, cashmere allows your body to breathe which helps regulate temperature. It negates sweating and its softness feels pleasant against the skin, since fibers are finer than wool and are spun tightly for a smooth aesthetic, which is a warmer season look. Also cashmere doesn’t wrinkle, making it an ideal fabric for travel clothing as there is no need for ironing.
In brief, you can believe my experience when I write these luxurious yet discreet cashmere sweaters will probably become staples in your closet and garments you will wear a lot. I must warn you though: the sensation of cashmere directly on the skin is highly addictive and it will be difficult to go back to cotton or basic wool knitwear.
This sweater is available in two colours - Beige and Navy Blue - and in four sizes (S, M, L and XL). As we wanted as many as possible to be able to access these high-level garments, we managed (thanks to Yeossal and their involvement in this project) to keep the price as soft as possible: €219 (+ shipping).
For added information, I wear the M size on all the photos and I'm 1M78 tall (5'9) and my weight is 77kgs (170 lbs).
To order those sweaters please follow this link: PG X Yeossal cashmere sweaters
NB * The price indicated on the Yeossal website is €233, but if you live outside of Singapore the local VAT will be subtracted from the total amount upon check-out. The shipping fees will be calculated automatically when you check-out. In terms of potential custom taxes (when applicable), expect an additional €15 to €20 euros (depending on where you live). Also note that upon check-out the prices may be indicated in SGD$ (Singapore dollar), so don't worry if you see a bigger figure, the prices above are the right ones in euros.
Since many years, Sonya and I have been mesmerized with the way our friend (and parangon of sartorial style) Lorenzo Cifonelli, is frequently using cashmere sleeveless cardigans instead of the classic vest (waistcoat) to add a subtle dose of panache to his suits or odd outfits. This element of style is a very elegant yet completely overlooked piece which offers innumerable possibilities: you can wear it with odd jackets, with suits and even simply above a shirt for an instant dash of sartorial flair and comfort.
The cashmere used for the cardigan is the same we used for the mock necks (see above). It features horn buttons and two small pockets on the front. There is no adjuster in the back as an adjuster can be awkward with knitwear.
This cardigan is available in Beige and in four sizes (S, M, L and XL). Once again, as we wanted as many as possible to be able to access this supremely versatile sartorial piece, we managed with Yeossal to keep the price as soft as possible: €229 (+ shipping).
To order this cardigan please follow this link: PG X Yeossal cashmere cardigan
While a sleeveless cashmere cardigan may not on the top of your sartorial list, if you’re like me, you will be very surprised at how often you will gravitate to this piece for its versatility, its functionality, and its ability to complement different sartorial settings.
On a side note, I find that my cardigan is the perfect garment for Zoom conferences. The sleeveless cardigan gives an air of elegance while staying simple in its effect (and fast to put on if you are late). Slip the cardigan vest over a shirt and you’re good to go!
HOW TO ORDER
Follow this link and you'll land on the page dedicated to this collaboration on the Yeossal's website: PG X Yeossal collaboration
Please don't hesitate to contact us (firstname.lastname@example.org) for any question or any advice/guidance you may need in terms of size or color.
We sincerely hope this collaboration will be the opportunity for you to make a smart (and reasonable) investment, to introduce cashmere knitwear into your closet, and to experience the fabulous properties of this rare and precious material.
PS: Don't worry if you see higher prices on the Yeossal website as the prices may be displayed in Singapore Dollars. Also the local tax will be removed upon check-out. The prices are 219 euros + shipping for the sweaters and 229 euros + shipping for the cardigan (i.e. US$260 and US$270).