The cashmere camel is not some scientific, genetic, breading experiment to make the perfect men's overcoat because that already exists with this Hawkins & Shepherd coat above! Over 50,000 of us per week are searching on Google for the words 'camel' and 'cashmere' together, so in this post I'm going to detail the differences between camel and cashmere fabrics and why they are the perfect all-season thread, not just in design but also in the technical properties of the fabric.
The camel colour trend in both menswear and womenswear doesn't seem to be losing any steam, in fact it seems to be gaining pace. On my way to work this morning I spotted 2 men and 7 women wearing different variations of the classic overcoat, but all camel in colour. I have put this down to camel hues being able to span seasons, it is becoming the new navy and grey as staple a colour. However the more I look into the technicalities of the Cashmere and Camel fabrics, it becomes clear why these fabrics are excellent for every season and it isn't just because of fashion.
Cashmere or (Kashmir) is taken from goats on the fine soft undercoat of hair. The geographic origin of this goat is the Kashmir Province of India, although little is actually supplied from this area nowadays and instead from Mongolia, China and Tibet. These cashmere animal fibres are collected during the natural molting seasons of which goats molt over a 3 week period in Spring. This hair is a naturally light-weight and warm yet adaptable to all climates due to a high moisture content which allows insulation properties to change with the humidity of the air. Luxuriously soft, Cashmere is naturally either grey, brown or white.
Camel hair is from the two humped Bactrian camel again taken from the soft underside of the hair beneath the courser guard hair. Supply normally comes from either China, Iran, Mongolia, Afghanistan, Russia, New Zealand, Tibet and Australia. The hair is collected during molting seasons, which comes off in large clumps and collected by hand. This usually happens between Spring and Summer. Lightweight with thermostatic properties which protects and insulates the camel during high mountain winters and blizzards, whilst keeping cool in desert heat. Luxuriously soft, camel is naturally golden tan in colour.
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Photography Sophie Milner