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Why is Cashmere so Expensive?

The Goats Are Hard to Get / Farm

When we think of sheep and lambs, we tend to think of soft, cuddly little animals with snowy-white fleece. When we think of wool jumpers, however, most of us have enough experience to know the reality is a lot itchier, heavier, and not always highly appealing.

Likewise, when we think of goats, we tend to think of bad-tempered head-butters that will eat anything – ANYTHING – they find lying around on the ground. We think of hairy, wiry coats and sharp horns. Just like our view of lambs and sheep is the opposite of our view of clothing made from their wool, we often don’t realise that the best – the very best – of materials for luxury-knit clothing comes not from little lambs’ wool or soft cotton, but from the undercoat of goats – and certain goats in particular.

There is a breed of goats, originating in the area of Kashmir but now found in a few other countries as well, that develops a sift undercoat in the winter. Especially if the summers are hot, the winters frigidly cold, and food a little sparse most of the year – which they’re fine with – the long, thin, soft fibres they produce to keep themselves comfortable translate into the best of high-end, knit-garment fabric: Cashmere.

There are other kinds of wool, but nothing comes close to the comfort, lightness, and warmth of 100% pure cashmere.

Quality is Key Here

Because there are only so many places that these goats live, and even fewer that result in their producing the fine undercoats of sufficient quality, there is a relative scarcity of the fibres used to make the yarn that is knit together into the fabrics and garments.

What this means is that it takes more than two goats to produce enough cashmere for a single two-ply jumper – sometimes up to five goats. The fibres are combed out of each goat only once per year, after the cold season, so that means two to five goats take a year to produce enough cashmere for a single jumper.

And it’s not just the goats who work hard.

To get the fibres out in the longer lengths desired for higher-quality cashmere, the process has always been done by hand. A human being must comb out the fine undercoat from the coarse outer coat during moulting season. The fibres must be meticulously separated, cleaned, and stored for yarn production, without breaking up the long strands.

What the scarcity and difficulty of production means to the market is that only about 6500 metric tons of cashmere are produced each year. Sound like a lot? Compare it to the two million metric tons of sheep’s wool produced annually, and you get an idea of it in context. That’s about 308 times as much sheep’s wool as cashmere! Considering it’s not 308 times more expensive, we’re actually getting a pretty good deal.

What is the history of cashmere clothing?

As the name suggests, cashmere use originated in the Kashmir region (‘cashmere’ is an older spelling of ‘Kashmir). The locals began using it for yarn and knit materials production as early as the 1200s, the time of the Mongolian Empire.

Important political and religious leaders wore cashmere garments in Iran and India from the 1500s to the 1900s, often bestowing cashmere shawls upon talented subordinates. This served two purposes. First, it honoured the subordinate by giving him (it was always a ‘him’ in those days) a visible item – similar in function to a medal or sash. Second, it highlighted the fact of the hierarchy – the one doing the giving was clearly seen as superior to the one receiving the gift.

Late in the 18th century, Scottish textile manufacturer Joseph Dawson discovered this soft, light, and warm knit material and began buying it, processing it in his factory in Scotland, and selling it to upper-class British women who prized this new, ultra-soft luxury fabric and would pay top prices for it. China is now the largest producer and exporter of cashmere – but Europe remains the top location for quality processing and manufacture of cashmere clothing.


Learn About Search Engine Optimisation

What is this SEO thing?

Search Engine Optimization today is progressively driven by all-natural language search, that is, individuals doing searches that are extra like regular inquiries compared to 2 or 3 key words. They are a lot extra pertinent since they consist of extra information, as well as a result web traffic from these key phrases transforms at a greater price. The purpose, when it comes to positions, is not to place for a couple of leading keyword phrases that stay the exact same over time, yet to concentrate on a much bigger number of all-natural language searches that is expanding and also altering quickly.

Positions Do Not Matter As High As You Assume They Do

Positions issue. Obtaining positions is an outcome Search Engine Optimization companies could conveniently market due to the fact that they’re mentally pleasing, however they’re useless unless they create leads or sales– the end result you desire. That’s why you must just employ Search Engine Optimization companies or Search Engine Optimization experts that concentrate on results, instead compared to results.

The Inquiry You Ought To Be Asking

Since you understand exactly how Search Engine Optimization has transformed which you desire leads and also sales from your Search Engine Optimization company as opposed to simply positions, the inquiry you should be asking is “The length of time will it consider Search Engine Optimization to begin creating leads and also sales?”

How can I “SEO” my own website?

Key words research study

We should understand and also to discover words as well as expressions that searchers are in fact making use of to resolve or to obtain response to the issue that they are having in your globe. Those need to be troubles that your company, your site is really functioning to resolve, that your material will certainly help them to fix.

Exactly what you desire below is a main key words and also with any luck a collection of relevant additional key words that share the searcher’s intent. The intent behind of all of these terms as well as expressions must be the exact same so that the exact same material could offer it. When you do that, we currently have a key and also an additional collection of key words that we could target in our optimization initiatives.

Examine the SERP to locate just what Google thinks to be appropriate to the searcher

I desire you to do some SERP examination, implying do a search question in Google, see exactly what comes back to you, as well as after that number out from there what Google thinks to be appropriate to the keyword phrases searches. Just what does Google believe is the material that will address this searcher’s question?

Have one of the most reliable individual develop material that will certainly offer the searcher’s objective

We desire an in fact trustworthy, worthwhile of boosting individual or individuals to develop the material. Well, due to the fact that if we do that, we make boosting, we make web link structure, we make social sharing means a lot more most likely to occur, as well as our material comes to be a lot more qualified, both in the eyes of searchers and also site visitors as well as in Google’s eyes also.

Next off, we’re aiming to offer the searcher’s objective and also address their job, as well as we intend to do that far better compared to any person else does it on web page one, since if we do not, even if we’ve enhanced a great deal of these various other points, gradually Google will recognize, you understand just what? Searchers are discouraged with your outcome compared with various other outcomes, and also they’re most likely to place those other individuals greater.

Who should I listen to in SEO?

Matt Jackson is an seo consultant in the UK, and he often publishes free to read guides on his website which talk about ecommerce websites and more general SEO practices to follow.

You can also find out the basics about SEO from, who have published lots of useful articles over the years (including their beginners guide to SEO) as well as the Whiteboard Friday videos from Rand Fishkin.


The Best Leather Business Bags, Briefcases and Laptop Bags UK 2018

So you may be wondering about my recommendations for fashion in 2018, as I‘ve previously blogged about my home life in Charmouth, so now I want to address the region of fashion, in particularly leather bags that are available in the UK.

How to Choose a Leather Business Bag?

When you’re in business, you need to convey power and authority, as well as professionalism, and a sense that you care about what you do. That’s where a business bag comes in, and which one you choose says a lot about you.

The key here is to always choose leather, as anything else makes you look either like a traveller in an airport, or a child going to school. Make sure the colours are black or brown, and make sure the metal is shiny and robust enough to last. You want to avoid shoulder straps when in the meeting room, reserving those for when on the tube or bus.

What makes a good leather laptop bag?

A laptop bag has to protect your gadget first, and so you must choose a padded bag that will protect any bashes or scrapes that the bag gets. That being said it must also be professional enough to work in a business environment, so here again I would also recommend you go with a leather bag.

You can often get a laptop bag with separate pockets for the gadget and other things, helping you to keep the bag organised instead of rummaging through when trying to find something. I would again recommend sticking with brown or black leather, but women may be able to get away with tan or red leather too.

Men’s Leather Briefcases – Von Baer UK

These guys have proven to make the quality of briefcase that is good enough to last a lifetime, with full grain leather used and both black and brown leather. You can also get the leather cream which can extend the life of the briefcase.

Our leather briefcase range offers contemporary design, heritage craftsmanship and impeccable component quality. Every bag is designed to be smart enough for work as well as versatile enough for more casual day to day use.

When shopping for leather briefcases for men on Von Baer, we recommend you look at the following styles:

  • Magnate Modern Briefcase
  • Master No1 Leather Briefcase
  • Oligarch Business Briefcase

These three products are by far the most appropriate for a business environment, both in style and practicality.

How to tell if it’s full grain leather?

As you can see from the video above, it’s not so easy to detect full grain leather. The key is to make sure the manufacturer has specified it is full grain leather on the website or product label, to keep yourself covered later on if you find out it’s lesser quality.

The difference between full grain and lower grade leather is massive, and I would always recommend you choose that over anything else, particularly on a business bag where you want to impress.

University Education Starts With a Safe Student Accommodation

Now we have been looking at various forms of education recently (including 11+ tests), however this post is geared towards students going to University.

Many parents will not know that the most important part of University is actually getting a solid base from which your child can live their life. This is because if everything is unorganised or at risk at home, then it will distract them from their studies and from making friends, and can end up leaving them with a miserable life at University.

So with that in mind, we will share some important information about choosing the best student accommodation to give your child the best head start:

1. In 1st Year – Get Social Halls of Residents in Popular Areas

It’s vitally important that in the first year your child meets the most diverse range of people possible. This is because they need to find people they have things in common with in order to form friendship groups, and you give them the highest chance of this by being in large halls of residents where lots of people live in close proximity.

When they have parties, social events, sports, and other group gatherings it will give them plenty of time to find a group that they connect with and want to live with in their second year.

2. In 2nd Year – Choose a Student house That Contributes To Your Organisation

Once your child has their group of friends sorted you want them to get an affordable and conveniently located student house. Strawberry Student Homes offers student accommodation in Sheffield, and has described the best student house as “having plenty of room for everyone to do their own thing, but also having social areas for everyone to come together as a family”.

It should be located within reach of everyone’s University lectures, whilst also allowing you easy reach of the local shops, and the bars and nightlife. It is also a great idea to be in reach of the gym or other sports grounds, to allow you to keep active with your friends.

3. In 3rd Year – Studying Takes Priority over Everything

This is the time where you and your house mates really need to lock in and study hard. That means your accommodation must be located close to the library and exam halls, allowing you a good routine for getting the best grade possible, and helping you graduate with a degree you will be proud of. This can be a make or break decision, particularly during the exam revision period.

For more student tips, you can keep an eye on our blog, or use the following resources:

Getting Ready For the 11 Plus Grammar School Entrance Exam

The 11 Plus exam is notorious for being very difficult to pass, and has many children spending sleepless nights wondering whether or not they will pass it and gain entry to their chosen school.

That’s why we’ve come up with a guide on how best to prepare for the 11 plus exam (whether that’s the CEM or GL exam boards).

Prepare a Timetable

A timetable is essential for getting your child’s revision off to a good start. It’s important to plan years in advance, getting them familiar with the topics in the 11 plus and helping them to mentally adjust to exam conditions.

List The Topics In Order Of Difficulty

You want to work out what your child finds the most difficult, so that you can prioritise those topics.

There are many topics in the 11 Plus exam, including:

  • Verbal reasoning
  • Non-verbal reasoning
  • Essay Writing
  • English comprehension
  • Mathematics

You can use past papers and revision guides to help you identify more.

Practice Using Past Papers – Essential

Using practice exam papers is one of the best ways that you can prepare your child to get a good mark on the 11 plus exam.

You should buy 11 Plus Papers to ensure your child has accurate questions to test themselves on during their revision timetable period, from providers such as TES,  11 Plus Leap, and Amazon.

Find the Knowledge Gaps

Later on in the revision process you can identify where your child needs extra help. For example if they’re struggling with non-verbal reasoning, you can portion some time aside to focus more on this area, and ensure that they get back up to speed before exam day comes around (usually August / September time in the UK).

Prepare For Exam Conditions

One of the best ways a child can get a good mark is to be completely comfortable in an exam hall, and taking tests under exam conditions. There is just something about the situation that puts extra pressure on children, and so having them relaxed will enable them to think clearly and understand the questions better.

Rattan Conservatory Furniture UK

Finding the right furniture that goes well with the interior design of your home is a huge part of making sure everything goes together to get the perfect décor. Many types of furniture can be suitable depending on your taste, rattan being one of them.

Not only are they suitable for outdoor use, they can also blend perfectly inside the house to give you the elegant and unique finish. One of the reasons why people like rattan is because they give lots of room for creativity.

You can mix different colors and designs to come up with a unique and quality finish. Adding rattan conservatory furniture to your home can be a great way to add value to the general appearance of your home.

Synthetic Rattan Furniture is More Durable and Multi Use

By choosing this sort of rattan, for example shop rattan conservatory furniture at You can have the option of using it inside your conservatory during the winter, and taking it outside to use as garden furniture during the summer, saving you from buying two sets.

The wide range of furniture from corner sofas, conservatory chairs to footstools gives you plenty of options to choose from as you add a personal touch to your home. You can try to combine bold colors with rattans to create a complex and appealing decorations. The easy maintenance of these furniture designs and their stylish and durable nature, add to their quality.

They are also very comfortable and easily portable, making them easy to move around and decorate in a way that allows your home to get extra stream of natural light adding to its general beauty. It’s advisable to keep rattan furniture from direct sunlight and rain to maximize their durability.

You should also use cushions to help prevent sagging even when the seats are comfortable without them.

For cleaning, use a damp cloth to wipe the furniture and toothbrush to get in between the crevices. Make sure you pat dry any wet areas to avoid damage. In case you buy pieces that haven’t been assembled, ensure all the pieces and tools you need are there before you start assembling upside down.

In case you encounter molds, use a little amount of bleach to wipe them away, taking care not to make the towel too damp or using too much bleach.