The cashmere route: from China to Winterbach
Soft, softer, softest – cashmere is one of the finest and most precious natural yarns in the world! And once you’ve worn it, you’ll never want to take it off again. The undisputed leader among the so-called “precious yarns” consists of fine, curly fibres, between which a kind of protective layer of air is trapped. As a result, cashmere provides excellent thermal insulation, keeps you cool in summer and wicks away moisture very well. And the soft, lightweight fibres are not only temperature-regulating and breathable, but also dirt-repellent and barely absorb odours.
Most of our raw cashmere comes from the northwest of China – the only part of the world where the highest quality is guaranteed. So here is where our journey begins…
This is how it becomes so soft!
It all starts in Alashan – on the edge of the Gobi Desert
Here, in the barren northwest of China, is where our wool “suppliers” live: the cashmere goats. Around 200 animals live on a huge area of 1000 hectares and supply the local farmers. The precious fibres of the goats are combed out by hand, once the goats turn two, after the outer fleece has been trimmed. The artfully twirled, combed hair is then processed further.
Preparation of the raw materials
The next steps on the way to incredible softness include the spreading out of the combed fibres, sorting them roughly and removing large impurities by hand. Then they are washed, combed and dried several times. This separates the precious duvet of downy fibres from the coarse outer hairs. Finally, the duvet bales with a total weight of 70kg begin their journey to Daqing.
Daqing – in northeast China
After three days the bales arrive in our dyeing and spinning mill. Around 200 employees process more than 400 tonnes of material every year. However, nothing happens in the further processing without intensive quality control, because our standards are high and the purity of the goods must be guaranteed. So, first of all it is necessary to accurately check the fibre fineness, fibre length and degree of pilling.
Dyeing and spinning
Now it’s ready for the next steps: the raw material is dyed and then spun into a fine yarn. The wool goes through several brush-like rollers, which straighten up the loose fibres, smooth them and arrange them as a wafer-thin fleece. Once processed, large machines spin the fine yarn which, after being weighed and packed, continues its journey to Beijing.
Production in Beijing
The first thing to be done then is to determine the correct measurements of the garment, as every single stitch is important. Then the actual garment is made. High-quality machines from the Reutlingen-based company STOLL knit the individual pieces, which are then stitched together by hand – this is called “linking” in technical terms. Then it’s washed, ironed and the label is sewn on. After this it’s finally ready for the quality control that every jumper must undergo. And if no knitting or other defects are found, the cuddly soft cashmere garments make their way to PETER HAHN.
A new fashion favourite awaits
After about 40 days at sea, the luxury garments finally arrive at PETER HAHN in Winterbach. There they will be stored in our warehouse, waiting to be ordered…
You will find further information in regards to our ethos and sustainability strategy in this section.
Our efforts in regards to good working conditions in the supply chain are shown here.
Animal welfare & Environmental Protection
In this section, we inform you about our activities in regards to animal welfare and environmental protection.