In 2020, I spotlighted Naadam as a sustainably and ethically producing knitwear brand that is committed to making high-quality clothing designed to last so that consumers pass on fewer products and ultimately create less waste. Naadam prided itself on using long fibres when creating yarn to use for their knitwear, because it makes the cashmere stronger and minimizes pilling. It’s precisely when yarn fibres are short or broken that knitwear is most prone to pilling.
I haven’t personally bought from Naadam, but some of my clients did after my endorsement. I’ve since helped these clients edit and review their wardrobes, only to find that many of the Naadam items have pilled. And it’s some of the worst pilling I’ve seen on knitwear. Most items were beyond the trouble of de-pilling with special tools at home. Maybe there were a bunch of bad yarn batches and pandemic challenges with production. Regardless of the reason, this is disappointing.
These days, purchasing knitwear that doesn’t pill is a crapshoot. The best advice I can offer is to purchase 100% cotton knitwear, because that fibre content has the best track record so far. I hope you were luckier with the quality of your Naadam knitwear than my clients were. I hope that Naadam sorts out the quality issues because their story, business model, and goals are compelling.