How the world's finest cashmere is made

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Before you go close icon
22 PHOTOS
NTP: India pashmina fortune
See Gallery
How the world's finest cashmere is made
Artisans needle-embroider cotton into pashmina sozni shawls at a home in Budgam district, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Spools of de-haired pashmina are processed into threads at the spinning unit of the Valley Wool Ltd. factory in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Spools of de-haired pashmina is processed into threads at the spinning unit of the Valley Wool Ltd. factory in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
An employee handles pashmina during the de-hairing process at the Valley Wool Ltd. factory in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A weaver uses kani sticks weaving different colors of pashmina threads to make a kani shawl at a home workshop in Srinigar, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Monday, Aug. 24, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A weaver works pashmina on a handloom to make a kani shawl at a home workshop in Srinigar, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Monday, Aug. 24, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A weaver handles threads of pashmina on a handloom to make a kani shawl at a home workshop in Srinigar, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Monday, Aug. 24, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Pashmina threads sit wrapped around a hank at a home workshop in Srinigar, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Monday, Aug. 24, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A herd of pashmina goats and sheep walk over a bridge to head out and graze in the valley of Kharnak, Jammu and Kashmir, India on Saturday, Aug. 09, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A nomadic woman stands in the valley of Kharnak, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Sunday, Aug. 09, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A pashmina goat stands still as other goats and sheep return to their enclosures after spending the day grazing in the valley of Kharnak, Jammu and Kashmir, India on Saturday, Aug. 08, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A nomadic goatherd's tent sits illuminated at night in the valley of Kharnak, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Saturday, Aug. 08, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A mountain trail winds through a valley in Changthang, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Sunday, Aug. 09, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A nomadic woman carries a child on her back while walking through a herd of pashmina goats at their settlement in the valley of Kharnak, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Saturday, Aug. 08, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A pashmina goat stands in an enclosure after spending the day grazing in the valley of Kharnak, Jammu and Kashmir, India on Saturday, Aug. 08, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A shepherd returns home with a herd of pashmina goats and sheep after having spent the day grazing the animals in the valley of Kharnak, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Saturday, Aug. 08, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Nomadic tribe leader Targee Tashi walks in the valley of Kharnak, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Saturday, Aug. 08, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Babar Afzal, founder of Village Pashmina and a former McKinsey & Co. analyst, sits for a photograph at his home in Jammu, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Monday, Aug.10, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A worker handles scoured pashmina wool while preparing to lay the wool on the ground to dry at the pashmina processing plant operated by the All Changhtang Pashmina Growers Co-Operative Marketing Society Ltd. in Leh, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Friday, Aug. 07, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Raw Pashmina sits on the scouring line at the pashmina processing plant operated by the All Changhtang Pashmina Growers Co-Operative Marketing Society Ltd. in Leh, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Friday, Aug. 07, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Employees take a tea-break prior to starting work at the pashmina processing plant operated by the All Changhtang Pashmina Growers Co-Operative Marketing Society Ltd. in Leh, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Friday, Aug. 07, 2015. Pashmina goats are no ordinary goats. The shaggy, wide-horned beasts produce pashmina, the finest cashmere, a silky soft cloth that can fetch as much as $200,000 for a shawl in the boutiques of Paris and New York. Most of that mark-up goes to a long chain of buyers, weavers, traders, middlemen and wholesalers. Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg via Getty Images
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE
SHOW CAPTION +
HIDE CAPTION


Pashmina shawls have been a fashion essential around the world for centuries, dating back to 200 years ago when Napoleon presented his wife with one.

The silky cloth which is known as the finest cashmere available is produced from the coats of Himalayan goats.

Many of these shawls are spun by hand in Kashmir, India and sell for as much as $200,000 in high-end stores in Paris and New York.

A Kashmiri goatherd receives up to 2,700 rupees per kilogram of raw wool, which is about $40 in the U.S.

Check out the slideshow above for an inside look at the production process of these luxurious garments.

See video for how to care for cashmere:
How to Care for Cashmere




Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.

From Our Partners