Capra Hircus Laniger – The Best Goat in the World

Ran into an old friend on the bus the other day, dear readers, and he had on the coolest cashmere-blend winter coat. I’m talking great color, great cut, great fit. I was a tad jealous, I must say, even though his men’s coat wouldn’t fit me. But it got me to thinking about cashmere and what a wonderful fabric it is, surprisingly versatile and oh-so-soft and warm. The title of today’s blog is the scientific name of the cashmere goat (in all its shaggy glory, right), whence derives all cashmere yarns. And while this goat might be somewhat rare and precious, there’s no reason not to find stylish cashmere sweaters across a range of price points.

In the $100 spectrum, I wanted to show you the totally fun Halogen Ruffle Cashmere Cardigans, or one of the Halogen Pattern Cashmere Cardigans, but seeing as how those are all but sold old (they were featured in Nordstrom’s last mailer), I’ll have to settle for the slightly more mundane, yet equally wardrobe-enhancing Halogen Scoop Neck Cashmere Cardigan, available in Asian Plum (shown at left), Black or Pale Heather Grey. I like this for a couple of reasons. It’s lightweight and great for layering which, if you work in an office like mine where we sometimes swelter and other times shiver, is a good thing. Also it’s from a Nordstrom house brand – Halogen – that I know produces good quality items that, while they won’t become heirlooms, will get you through several seasons. And while the patterned and ruffled versions cost $98, the plain colored one costs $88.

For even less money, you can wear an Isaac Mizrahi for Target Cashmere Turtleneck Sweater in one of a wide range of color selections, including Park Green, shown at right. Available online only and currently on sale for $39.99, this would look so chic underneath a jumper or paired with a plaid skirt and boots, and topped off with my new IC! Berlin sunglasses. In general, the reviews for this brand’s cashmere are very positive; many reviewers said the fabric felt just as soft as far more expensive brands. I like that there’s such a range of colors and other styles – v-necks, cardigans, even capes – available at reasonable price points. Go Isaac! At a level higher than the Nordstrom sweaters – the level I consider “Completely Out Of My Reach Unless It’s Very Deeply Discounted” – stands Vince. I love this line. I think I only own a couple of tank tops from them, though. Maybe a skirt I bought on clearance.

Anyhow…Vince’s cashmere is like a big soft hug in clothing form and their Cashmere Boyfriend Cardigan is no exception. This will definitely feel thicker and softer than the other two, plus the ombre color scheme really sets it apart. I love the longer hemline (it would look smashing over a dress of the same length) and deep v-neck. Basically, it’s perfect. Oh, except for the part where it costs $325. Ouch. Like I said, look for it on sale!

Finally, there’s the cream of the crop, the tip of the top, the DCGF’s “dream sweater” in cashmere: Lucien Pellat-Finet. I’m partial to the black version with the crystal skull on the front, like the sunglass one at right. I saw one hanging on a rack at a boutique in SoHo when I was in NYC last spring and just about fainted.

There is was, size XL (read: size Medium for the rest of us mere mortals) with the skull, black, perfect, etc., etc. The price? A jaw-dropping $3200. I was scared to touch the thing. But I summoned the courage and found the most luxurious cashmere ever to grace my fingertips. I… want… so… bad…

But who am I kidding? I’ll never get a Lucien Pellat-Finet. But who needs one of those when I could just iron a patch onto the Isaac Mizrahi version? Better yet, I’ll get one downstairs for $6 and have at it with a Beddazler. Done. I’ll let ya know how it turns out. Ha.

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