The colors of cashmere

I used to keep a wide range of colors in my cashmere goat herd. Color of the goats’ guard hair had a wide range including white, various shades of silver/gray, brown, black and patterns containing several colors. Cashmere colors ranged from a bright white, soft brown to dark brown. I divided my annual harvest of cashmere into four categories – white (only from the white goats), white with color (from goats of color – mostly grays – but cashmere appears white-ish), and brown, for all the rest. Sometimes I saved out a few very dark brown fleeces for special treatment. In later years, I decided I liked the gray goats best, so now I focus on just keeping the silver colored goats and a few white goats. I put all their cashmere together in one batch and label it as white. A few non-preferred colors of kids are born each year, but customers like the colored goats and they are easy to sell.

These are cashmere samples combed from 3 different goats. Left to right: GK Natasha (black goat), GK Lira (gray goat) and GK Moon Pie (white goat).
Three little yarn samples spun from the cashmere samples. From right to left: Natasha (black), Lira (gray), Moon Pie (white).
The start of a tiny scarf, knit from the 3 small skeins. If you look closely, you can see a subtle difference between the gray goat in the center and the white goat on the top. Cashmere from gray goats is more of a soft white, while cashmere from white goats is a bright white.
This is to be the recipient of the small scarf. He is thinking I need to go retrieve more samples so his scarf can be longer.
A cashmere scarf knitted long ago, from random samples of cashmere from various goats in my herd.

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