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Cashmere Care

I like nice things, but sometimes I suck at taking care of them. Case in point, for a long time I have wondered how the heck people keep cashmere sweaters for years when I just look at mine and poof, fuzz balls everywhere! Somewhere along the way I discovered the secret the rest of the world already knew, you don't just wear a cashmere sweater like a regular piece of clothing, you have to take care of it. Perhaps this is why cashmere is so expensive, to insure only people with lady's maids to care for it have it. But since this is no Downton Abbey lifestyle here at Casa De MandySue I've had to learn these things on my own. 

But seriously, I love a nice cashmere sweater. I would never, EVER, pay the full retail price but I do love the way Lilly Pulitzer elevates cashmere beyond just a plain boring black turtleneck. 

This is the Nanette sweater, I got this ON SALE for $99, yikes! But oh how I love the ruffles 


And this one is the Madison, sale price $158, yeah, you better believe I plan on wearing this for years. 


So when I lilly sweater I got from a fellow lilly lover looked like this after a few wears I knew it was time to take action

I bought one of those sweater stones a few months ago but like a lot of useless things I buy it was nowhere to be found when I needed it. Plus, $8 for basically the same thing as a Dollar Tree pumice sponge , no thank you. So I just dug out a fresh razor, yep - the same kind you use to shave your legs, and went to work. 

To shave your sweater, hold the fabric taunt but not too tight on a flat surface and drag the razor lightly across. I did a small area at a time with a few strokes and then kept moving downward


Basically, you'll be detaching the pills, lint and fuzz and dragging them down and off the sweater. Very little pressure is needed, the last thing you want is to make a hole. 

This is the fuzz collected from one side! 


Here the left side has been shaved and the right has not to give you an idea of the before and after: 


When I was done my sweater was practically looking new, yay! 

When wearing cashmere, make sure to wear a layer underneath. This way as long as you don't spill on it you won't need to wash after every wear. Ordinarily I'm a fan of taking my nice clothes to the dry cleaner but the chemicals are too harsh for something as delicate as cashmere. Hand wash with a delicate wash, you can buy an off brand of woolite at the Dollar Tree that's just as good. Roll in a towel to dry and then lay flat, hanging will drag out the shape. 

Yes, taking care of cashmere is a PITA ( pain in the . . .) but that's what it takes if you enjoy the finer things in life; at least it doesn't   wrinkle! You can always buy acrylic sweaters too but let's face it, it's just not the same. I only buy cashmere after Christmas or during an off season sale, Dillard's usually gets pretty serious with the markdowns on theirs come end of January. Cashmere is timeless and elegant so it does make for a nice investment piece, and I actually do think every woman should own a basic black turtleneck version. Over the years I have had to retire sweaters as they've become worn and lost their shape so I try to make it a point to buy a new one every year, it just makes winter more bare able. Oh, and if you come across leather cashmere lined gloves, just say yes!  











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