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Cashmere Reviews – Brora and Everlane

As a true cashmere addict, I’m always on the lookout for new go-to brands of my favorite material. So this season, I decided to branch out and try some new cashmere items. There had been two companies in particular which were on my radar for awhile – Brora and Everlane, and I tried out a few items from each. Here were my experiences!

First up – Brora.

I’d heard about Brora from my UK friends for some time now, and how the brand was a must try for a cashmere fanatic like myself. I wasn’t able to find it anywhere in the Bay Area however, and looking for the shop completely slipped my mind the last few times I was in London. So, I was happy to discover recently that Brora had a USA site, and happily browsed through. In the end, I narrowed down my favorites to a few items, including the brand’s famous cropped cashmere cardigan, and a shearling vest.

Brora Cropped CardiganCashmere Cropped Cardigan – this is a classic item from Brora, and one that I’d been wanting for a while. I liked this cardigan a lot…especially after putting it on. I have to admit that when I first pulled it out, my mother asked me if I had accidentally purchased a kid’s size. After being used to wearing mostly looser knits, this cardigan looks small. But once I put it on, I loved it. The cropped length is perfect for wearing over dresses, and hits at flattering spot on the waist. Now I actually want more of these, in other colors.

You can also see this cardigan on some excellent models – Nigella and Emma! – and see where it hits them nicely on the waist.

Cropped Brora Celebrity

The quality is really super on the cardigan. The cashmere is wonderfully soft, and also a good mid weight (lighter than my Chanel sweaters, which are super plush, but thicker than Vince, 360 Cashmere, etc). The buttons are a lovely and thick mother of pearl, and each button is sewed on securely with lots of thread. I may sound like I’m nitpicking, but a few of my latest J.Crew cardigans had their buttons fall off after a few washes. Also, there’s a nice grosgrain ribbon trim.

Brora Detail

And speaking of washing – after a few wears, I decided to gently wash my cardigan in my washing machine (yes, I know), and it turned out great. Just needed a quick iron, and good as new. Also – I took a size up in this cardigan (I ended up with a UK 10), as I had the feeling that it ran quite small – and I thought the fit was perfect.

I also decided to try out a non cashmere item, and found this great shearling vest! A shearling vest has been on my list for a while, and my original pick, this Iris and Ink version, sold out in my size quite quickly.

Brora Shearling

The Brora version is really plush, and fully reversible to suede. I also appreciated the longer length – I think it looks better for my torso. I’ve been wearing this vest both alone, and under other jackets/coats. I’m in casual clothes most days now, and I feel like this vest dresses things up a bit.

Brora Shearling

Next up for review – Everlane (that’s a referral link for me, by the way – if you sign up, thank you!).

One of my worn pairs of shoes right now are Everlane’s Street Shoe in grey, so I was quite excited to try out the brand’s cashmere. My favored sweater silhouette is usually the v-neck – I have broad shoulders, so v-necks tend to be the most flattering on me. Since Everlane’s cashmere v necks were quite well priced at $125, I decided to stock up and get two in basic colors, gray and black.

After a few months of wearing, my verdict? I think the best way for me to describe my thoughts on Everlane cashmere is, “very good, especially for the price.” I’m quite content with both of my sweaters – they seem quite sturdy and well made, aren’t itchy, and were inexpensive enough that I don’t have to be particularly precious about them. Yes I’ve had better cashmere…but at way higher price points. I’d equate the quality to similar as Vince, Theory, and the like. As for the style, I personally prefer a deeper v neck in my sweaters, but the neckline on Everlane’s version was nice as well, and certainly very work appropriate.

Everlane Black Cashmere

Wearing a Mars Malachite necklace, and Louboutin Decolletes

Also, I’d note that for some reason, I’ve found that my black cashmere sweater was noticeably softer than the gray (you can see the gray on me in this post). I’ve found this in some other brands (though not the Brora), and I wonder if to get that heather gray, mills have to mix in some rougher yarn? Anyway – if you’re looking for very soft cashmere and are quite sensitive to being itchy – I might advise to stick with black (I haven’t tried any of the other colors).

After washing? Both sweaters did fine being washed in my machine in a delicates bag, and then being air dried. There was no shrinkage, and after a quick iron, both looked as good as new!

I hope this review helped some of you who may have been considering these two brands. I’d love to hear your experiences with them (and any other cashmere brands) as well!

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  • Lucetta
    December 14, 2015 at 9:15 am

    Love Bora! We were in their Edinburg shop last year & everything was solidly made as if from another era as in my granny’s box room trunks.

    I bought a fine knit cotton cardi with an eyelet design on the back. It had been worn everywhere & is always appropriate. I can recommend trying some of their other products as well as their cashmere.

    • Katherine
      December 15, 2015 at 5:56 am

      Thank you Lucetta! Your cardigan sounds gorgeous.

  • Jessica
    December 14, 2015 at 10:23 am

    I’m not familiair with Brora, but I did buy a cashmere sweater by Everlane recently. So far so good. Regarding the softness of the fabric, lower quality cashmere is usually soft from the start. High quality cashmere might feel a bit more rough but it will get softer with time. That said, there are always exceptions of course. Haha, my jaw dropped when I read you just threw them in the washing machine.

    • Katherine
      December 15, 2015 at 5:57 am

      That’s a great point about higher quality cashmere being rougher in the beginning – I’ve read the same!

  • Becky
    December 14, 2015 at 10:53 am

    I have been wearing Eric Bompard cashmere for several years now. Love their quality & choice of colors, and ply.

    • Katherine
      December 15, 2015 at 5:57 am

      Eric Bompard cashmere is great too, and I love their designs.

  • Anna
    December 14, 2015 at 3:49 pm

    Thanks for sharing this. I love cashmere. This is very helpful!

  • Kimi, Cotton Cashmere Cat Hair
    December 14, 2015 at 7:06 pm

    I’m glad to hear you successfully machine-washed your Everlane cashmere! I have a couple of their cashmere crewneck sweaters, and I dry cleaned one over the summer and it seems to look a little more rough now than it did before.

    • Katherine
      December 15, 2015 at 5:57 am

      Yes! I’ll try to do a post about how I machine wash my knits.

  • Whitney Farris
    December 14, 2015 at 8:26 pm

    I always hand wash mine. And my all time favorite cashmere sweaters are Pringle.

    • Katherine
      December 15, 2015 at 5:58 am

      Pringle makes fabulous sweaters…I used to see them in a lot more shops, hopefully they’ll widen their distribution again.

  • Russian Chic
    December 15, 2015 at 12:45 am

    Brora cropped cardi looks divine! May I please ask what size did you get? We seem to be the same size. I see their offering starts from size 8 Thank you for sharing your fab finds with us.

    • Katherine
      December 15, 2015 at 5:58 am

      I took UK 10 – I think I’d be UK 8 in most of their other items, but this cardigan runs quite small. If I wanted a REALLY fitted look I would have gone with the 8, but I’m happy with 10.

  • keodi
    January 16, 2016 at 5:58 am

    The quality of Brora cashmere is excellent in my opinion, I’ve had great experiences with all the cashmere sweaters I’ve purchased from them over the years , no pilling, or quality problems. I purchased 2 cashmere items from Everlane, and unfortunately they did not hold up well at all. Everlane is no comparison to Brora in terms of quality, and colour.

  • #LuxeMinimalism: December Shopaholic Journal | Save. Spend. Splurge.
    January 16, 2016 at 10:00 pm

    […] Brora in a classic navy and v-neck which I have had my eye on for a while now ever since reading this review from Feather Factor on Brora and how it is super soft and not at all itchy which is exactly what I need for my sensitive, […]

  • Alex
    February 19, 2016 at 10:14 am

    What size did you go with in the Everlane sweaters?

    • Katherine
      February 19, 2016 at 10:42 am

      37!