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why is Brora cashmere so expensive?

(40 Posts)
whoneedssleepanyway Sat 17-Sep-11 07:52:39

I have fallen in love with this cardigan

but there is no way I could justify spending £175 on one cardigan...

why does Brora cashmere seem so much more expensive, I know probably not comparable but Boden's cropped cashmere cardigan is half the price (but colours not as nice and style not as nice)

I don't find knitwear lasts indefinitely either and always looks a bit sad after a couple of seasons, if you spend more does it last better....

so tell why Brora cashmere is worth spending the money on.

Nippysnippy Sat 17-Sep-11 08:22:28

That was what I ask earlier in the week so would also love to hear!
Brora addicts tell us why!

AgonyBeetle Sat 17-Sep-11 08:40:19

Because they know there are suckers out there who will pay those prices.

Supply and demand, innit.

Here's a thought: scan the Brora website, work out what you want and commission a nice clever person in Scotland to make you an entirely original version at a fraction of the price.


NatureAbhorsAHoover Sat 17-Sep-11 08:58:53

It is hideously ££££ I only go in when there's a sale... and it doesn't last any longer than cheaper cashmere, moths have no respect for labels sad

I thought the cost was because it's made in the UK by workers who are paid UK wages, and from UK wools from animals that have a decent life? I don't think it makes you a 'sucker' to object to £30 cashmere jumpers that are only that cheap due to third world slave labour & poor animal welfare standards in 3rd world shithole countries hmm

Penthesileia Sat 17-Sep-11 09:05:09

What Nature said:

- made from good quality cashmere (and multiple ply - [is that the right word?] so lasts longer, is thicker/warmer/more comfortable/more durable);
- made in Scotland, so at least minimum wage applies: minimum wage * number of hours it takes to knit a jumper = pricey;
- smallish company making profit to pay shareholders, employees, owners, and cover store & advertising costs.

Read this.

Pagwatch Sat 17-Sep-11 09:10:57

Good quality made well and not stitched together by an eight year old in a Chinese factory.
Like mulberry handbags.

There are stores that rack up prices massively because you are a twit. But I would rarer risk that than wander around primark because, when stuff is really cheap then someone down the line is getting screwed.

Penthesileia Sat 17-Sep-11 09:11:03

Just the yarn itself might cost at least £40. I think you'd need at least 1000m (i.e. 2 skeins) to make a reasonable "weight" jumper.

If it takes 10 hours to knit a decent jumper (is that a reasonable estimate?), at minimum wage of c.£6 an hour, that would be £100 all in. Much cheaper than Brora, yes, but still not a "cheap" jumper.

Penthesileia Sat 17-Sep-11 09:11:46

What Pag said too.

Penthesileia Sat 17-Sep-11 09:17:36

Nope. Apparently 30 hours is a more a reasonable estimate for how long it takes to knit a jumper (I'm not a knitter, can you tell?). So, saying you're a prof at what you do, and it takes 20, that's still about £120 in labour costs...

Penthesileia Sat 17-Sep-11 09:18:45

So, if someone in Scotland makes one for you at a fraction of the price, that's because they are charging less than the minimum wage, which an individual of course can do, but a company operating in the UK cannot (or should not).

vanillamum Sat 17-Sep-11 09:27:29

I could be wrong but nowhere on their website does it say the jumpers are hand knitted. I think they are done in the scottish mills. Also it is privately owned so no shareholders to pay.
It does look gorgeous though....but for true hand knit and ethical too try people tree (but not quite as lush as Brora)
At the moment People Tree has some very expensive but lovely hand knitted Orla Kieley cardigans.
I don't work for people tree honest, I just am quite impressed by their hand knit stuff-some is foul though and I have just taken delivery of 6 lovely things from them.

NatureAbhorsAHoover Sat 17-Sep-11 10:02:48

ooh thanks for that link vanilla - see what you mean, there's lovely things on there, but you just have to ignore the 'bridget jones on christmas day' numbers hmm

Nippysnippy Sat 17-Sep-11 10:23:53

I don't believe they are hand-knitted. What I want to know is what is the difference in quality between Brora, Boden and Pure Cashmere, if indeed there is one.
Preferably from personal experience.

Nippysnippy Sat 17-Sep-11 10:24:45

any, even!

higgle Sat 17-Sep-11 10:33:19

They are expensive because they don't just do easy basic styles, they do fairisle and fancy knitting etc. They have a wonderful colour range and - as a bit of a cahmere junkie - i can say that only 50's and 60's vintage pieces (Pringle is the best) match the quality. If you look after it, wash it properly and keep it away from the moths it will last for years, I have a jumper that I bo;ught second hand on ebay for £20 5 yearsago that is regularly worn and a fantastic aran style thick cardi ( they are the only ones that do 4 play) that goes on and on.

best news of all is that they have a genuine sale, with huge reductions twice a year - my Aran cardigan was £100 down from £400 -

I've only got a few pieces of knitwear, though I do buy their lovely jerey liberty print dresses that wash and tumble dry for work - they are worth the price.

Catslikehats Sat 17-Sep-11 10:34:14

The quality is excellent - I havent got and cashmere from elsewhere to compare but to give an example of longevity my DD had a couple of brora cardis which she wore a lot, I always stuck them in the machine (on handwash cycle) and they haven't worn, faded or pilled.

Because of her shape (tall and thin) DD tends to wear clothes out before she outgrows them (skirts that she wore as long when she was 3 are still being worn three years later etc) and her brora stuff is some of the very few things that have lasted well enough to be worn by her younger sister.

faustina Sat 17-Sep-11 12:28:56

Anything i have from Brora has been worn and worn and worn and washed (in a machine) and it's still fantastic - it's also noticeably warmer, softer

I bought a jumper from boden and one from marks and spencer and I can't say the same for either of them

As well as sales, they also have their clearance sales which are even better!

ameliagrey Sat 17-Sep-11 14:19:18

I can't see any advantage in paying £££ for Brora. it's a jumper/cardi FGS.

I have a few Boden cashmere jumpers and cardis all bought in sale or with a big discount and they are brill- one jumper is now on its 3rd winter, has never bobbled, is machine washed on 30C wool cycle, and looks as good as new.

I have been in Brora a few times and can see no advantage other than they do nice muted colours and a bigger range.

LaurieFairyCake Sat 17-Sep-11 14:35:25

I think that's what we should be paying for clothes and that we should buy less. They are a small company who don't as far as I can see exploit the cheaper countries for production.

I think the cost probably represents very close to the true cost of something.

I love my cardigan from there, it's beautifully made and I can see it lasting years. I have never loved a piece of clothing as much as it - not even my wedding dress.

MaeMobley Sat 17-Sep-11 15:51:58

I don't know about Brora but the quality of Boden cashmere is terrible and very poor value for money.

I have some Scottish cashmere cardigans (not Brora) that are over 20 years old (inherited from my mother) that look better than my new Boden ones.

The Scottish ones are thicker and don't go bobbly.

ameliagrey Sat 17-Sep-11 17:05:49

Isn't it funny how we all see things differnetly?
I have 2 Boden cashmere jumpers and 2 cropped cardis- I'd be really pushed to tell the diffrence between those and Brora.

The Boden I have is thick- much thicker than M&S.

RumourOfAHurricane Sat 17-Sep-11 17:12:20

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RumourOfAHurricane Sat 17-Sep-11 17:12:56

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Popbiscuit Sat 17-Sep-11 17:15:01

Agree with what Laurie said. Their things last and last and last. Buy one lovely cardigan to wear with different things and treasure it. Pick something cozy and practical rather than trendy. I have a Boden cashmere jumper that I never wear as it's completely shapeless and as thin as tissue. Brora jumpers are thicker and more carefully shaped, plus the colours are easier on the eye.

SofaQueen Sat 17-Sep-11 17:15:56

I am a bit of a cashmere junkie (anything from Uniqlo to Loro Piana) and have to say that for the quality of Brora, it is decently priced. Like the other poster above, I toss my jumpers in the washing machine and have never had a problem with pilling with any of my Brora jumpers. Fabulously thick, soft and very warm too.

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