Pashmina is the traditional name for the very finest grade of cashmere wool. Because of its unique softness and comforting warmth, pashmina is also known as the diamond fabric and the soft gold of high Asia. Put simply, it is the finest, softest and warmest wool available anywhere.
This amazing cashmere comes exclusively from the underbelly of the Capra Hircus goat, in the most remote regions of the Himalayas. Because they live approximately 14,000 feet above sea level, these special goats grow a thin, inner coat of hair that insulates them during the long, harsh Himalayan winters. It is this unique inner coat of hair that is used to produce pashmina. Each hair is about 1/6th the diameter of most other types of hair - but is still surprisingly durable while being stunningly soft and comforting to human skin.
You may be surprised to discover that it takes the entire annual growth of three of these goats to create just one pashmina shawl. But take comfort in the fact that these goats are not harmed during the process of producing pashmina. This is because the wool is collected only after being shed naturally. It is almost like this special cashmere wool is the goats' gift to everyone. And what an amazing gift it is!
Pashmina is also quite unusual in that it actually becomes softer and more comfortable with each use, actually making it gentler on your skin each and every time you have the luck to wear it. With proper care, the diamond fabric will last a lifetime or more. This is evident in the fact that pashminas have been handed down from generation to generation in royal and wealthy families throughout the world.
Of course now with The Pashmina Store you don't have to be royalty to enjoy a pashmina of your very own! We make every effort to qualify the authenticity of each item - spot testing every batch and asking all providers to guarantee they send us the authentic items we order. In the rare event an item is sent out that is not just as described, we will exchange the item. What you will not get from us are imitation pashminas made of viscose, which is a man-made material. You also will not find thin, mass-produced products made with lower-grade cashmere.
It is interesting to note that Napoleon may have started the pashmina fashion craze over 200 years ago when he presented a pashmina shawl to his wife. She was so pleased with the shawl that she asked Napoleon to get more so she could share them with her fashionable society friends. Two hundred years later pashmina remains an essential part of a fashionable wardrobe and popular wedding and bridesmaid gifts, attesting to the durability and widespread appeal of this classic accessory.
Cashmere Blanket and Pashmina Care
One of the wonderful things about your pashmina accessory, cashmere baby blanket or throw is that it can last for years and years - if you take proper care of it. It will even get softer and more luxurious with each wash!
In general, dry cleaning is the preferred method of washing for pashmina and cashmere care. However, you can hand wash occassionally if you are careful and follow a few guidelines that are listed below. We do suggest washing it before first use to make sure the natural vegetable dyes do not bleed.
To wash by hand, first use very cold water. You may add a little soft detergent such as baby shampoo or Woolite if you wish but please be certain the detergent is completely dissolved first. Then wash very gently by hand while being very careful with the hand-tied tassels if you are washing a pashmina accessory.
After washing, please do not wring dry. Simply lay it flat to dry. Once dry, you may warm iron but it is best to put a piece of paper or cloth between the iron and the fabric.
That's it. Proper pashmina and cashmere care is actually easy. Now it is time to enjoy!