soozeinthecity

March 27, 2014

BKCG March 2014: A visit by Jade Sapphire Cashmere

Filed under: Knitting — Tags: , , , , — soozeinthecity @ 7:41 pm

The Brooklyn Knit and Crochet Guild held it’s March meeting this past Sunday. The guest speakers were Ken and Jane Saffir, owners of Jade Sapphire yarns.

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These photos only show a portion of the samples that were on display. It was amazing to touch so much cashmere in such a short period of time. Jade Sapphire produces 200 colors; Jane knits each color is knit into a square, with black edging. These squares will make a beautiful afghan! Then Ken proceeded to educated us about cashmere.

“Soft gold”
Cashmere is the only fiber where demand exceeds supply. Whereas a single sheep may yield 8 pounds of wool fiber, a single goat yields 4 ounces of cashmere fiber. Also the fiber is combed off the goats, not sheared. Ken also explained that if the fiber is 19 microns or less it is cashmere, otherwise it is classified as wool.

All cashmere comes from China. It is THE source for this fiber. Although there have been attempts to relocate the goats to warmer climates, the high altitude and the extreme cold of China & Mongolia play a key role in producing the soft coat.

(More information about this sought after fiber can be found at cashmere.org

The Journey
Jade Sapphire cashmere is milled at the same factory that serves brands that are aimed at high end and mid-tier consumers (Think of brands that feature British plaid or represented by actress Kate Hudson). They produce cashmere fabric & sweaters that are sold worldwide.

Once the fiber is cleaned and spun it is sent to the dyer, one person dyes all their yarn. Ken noted that many yarn companies like theirs are small operations, especially those that hand dye yarn. He proudly mentions that their cashmere has been tapped to be part of the new knitwear line being launched by the luxury goods company, Coach (woohoo!).

After an animated Q&A session, the presentation concluded with the opportunity to take a closer look at the samples. La Casita Yarn Shop brought their inventory of Jade Sapphire yarn and offered Guild members the opportunity to make purchases at a discount. I look forward to seeing what fellow Guild members make with this delightful cashmere yarn!

Learn more about:

Jade Sapphire yarn
Brooklyn Knit & Crochet Guild
La Casita Yarn Shop

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