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Page 2 in the conversation "Sweaters for fall. Go $$$ or $?" by lisa p
I bought 2 of Banana Republic’s silk and cotton pullovers in the spring and they held up very well. They’re lightweight and layer quite nicely under a jacket. - a bit more luxe than the average cotton tee. The navy one faded a bit after probably 5 washes, plus I got a nasty pull in it, but the other one is still going strong. If you’re between sizes and want it for layering I’d size down. They don’t shrink when washed ( delicate cycle, rack to dry ).
Last year I splurged on a Vince cashmere/wool cardi and it has pilled like crazy. But my Vince coat with wool knit sleeves is perfect after 5 years though. Grrr.....
I’d second Uniqlo for cashmere. Really nice quality for the price, although my v-neck did shrink a bit in the wash.
Olsen does a cotton blend that holds up well too, but you need to find a style and colour that you like. Not easy lol.
For sweaters that pill, I shave the pills off and keep wearing the sweaters. Does everyone donate their sweaters at the first sign of a pill?
Last year, at the recommendation of a forum member, I bought a Kinross cashmere sweater from Nordstrom Rack and was very pleased with the quality. Not one pill, and very nicely made.
I will add the brand appears to run small; I had to size up one or two sizes.
I have to share a funny story...I found a very thick luxurious dark red turtleneck sweater at a thrift store last spring, too late in the season to wear it. The brand is ...wait for it....Kirkland Signature....that's COSTO!!! (for you non-US fabbers that's a big box store that carries a bit of everything, mostly in large quantities) I found nothing on their current web site like this, but did see some stuff by that brand on ebay. Who knew???
FWIW, Lisa P, both new jumpers are fluid and very fluid, actually. Roomier in person, and on me.
The fish & chips theme in the navy is authentic. I've been eating fish & chips in newspaper all my life, grew up in British HK, and it matches my British accent. I bought the matching shirt - very fluid too - to layer underneath "School Uniform" style, which is what I'm feeling this season.
Also giving the Ted Baker peplum knit a go, that I bought in the NAS.
LisaP I have a fluid, (merino?) wool sweater from Banana Republic that seems to be wearing beautifully. I don't wear it a ton, as it's teal, and I'm not crazy about teal with blue denim. Nevertheless, it seems great. I'm not a big BR shopper, but I also have a wool cardigan from them from about 15 years ago that still looks new.
I feel your pain! Sweaters are the hardest thing for me to shop for! I totally agree that cashmere is all over the board in terms of price and quality...not totally related.
JAileen, I have a sweater shaver too and don't find it unreasonable to use it from time to time. I do however have a problem with sweaters that need to be shaved after every wear. That pisses me off. Thankfully, the last sweater I bought that did that was from Nordstrom. I returned it after only a few hours of wear with visible pilling and they accepted it with no hesitation.
Also, some of the thinner sweaters only seem to stand up to so much pill removal before they start looking a little shabby. I don't have much tolerance for visibly worn knitwear that doesn't look purposefully RATE (i.e., a really classic fitted cashmere sweater vs an oversized slouchy style, which I think carries off a little wear more successfully). So I probably pass along sweaters a bit sooner than some other people might.
Chris - we have Costco here too At one point they even had Kirkland cashmere sweaters !
Angie - yes, I did say that the London theme was totally authentic for you Cute combo with the shirt too .
Both Janets- I’m happy to use a sweater shaver too ,but totally agree with your thoughts on worn and shabby knits . And no, I don’t get rid of them at the first sign of a pill - but I don’t wear them again until I’ve cleaned up the pills . Nothing looks worse to my eye than a pilled sweater . Nothing .
I’m at work today and on my phone so can’t reply well . Back tonight !
I have two Merino turtleneck sweaters from Uniqlo that I got on clearance after Christmas so quite cheap, which have held up pretty well over two winters so far, but are more sheer than I would like. One of those things you suddenly notice under bright lights one day and have to wonder if it was always an issue or is due somewhat to wear, weight gain stretching/poor fit or what. I’ll wear them with camis this year and still consider them a good bet to buy again even at full price, just based on such mixed experiences with other brands. A lot of brands seem to be constantly tweaking the fabric content vs Uniqlo which has more consistent offerings. And maybe the cami is just to be expected.
I’ve made it a rule not to buy trendy knits because they seemed to be one of the shortest lived items in my wardrobe for a variety of reasons.
The secondhand old Lands End cashmere sweaters and old Nordstrom store brand sweaters are very good. Very little pilling too. I get them on eBay. I don’t exactly get them because they’re cheap (which they are), but they feel more robust than most of the cashmere out in stores now, at any price. So far, they are lasting a long time. I want to get more but they are not falling apart and I have no more drawer space!
I am a a ride or die Eric Bompard fan. Beautiful cashmere, lovely knits. I buy them on sale in January and February. Can’t recommend them highly enough.
I have some wool Amour Vert sweaters that are great. I frequently steal my husband’s LL Bean rag wool sweaters. I also have one of their cashmere crew necks which is lovely.
But seriously, check out Bompard.
Knitwear is frustrating, I agree. I have a lot of cotton sweaters these days, because it's hard for me to know how bad my eczema will be any given year. I can wear all the merino I want in the summer and early fall, but as soon as heating season hits, I spend months combatting itchy arms and legs. So backwards, I know. I wear knit silk baselayers under cotton sweaters in the winter to make them warm enough. Or I wear a cotton shirt and use wool for toppers only.
Everlane makes my favorite cotton knitwear, but Uniqlo's 3D-knit cotton sweaters are great too. The Everlane costs a bit more but wears better too. I did not love Everlane's cashmere; it's quite thin and not the softest. I feel they're compromising on quality in order to maintain that $100 price point (I've seen this with J Crew and others when it comes to cashmere as well; I'm very reluctant to buy cashmere outside of secondhand these days.)
I found Uniqlo's merino sweaters to be very good bang for the buck, but I'd avoid their blends -- merino/cashmere, cotton/cashmere, viscose/anything -- as those are what seem to deteriorate the fastest. I had the red Lemaire collab sweater (merino with 5% cashmere) for maaaybe two seasons before it developed holes, and the ribbed texture made it almost impossible to remedy all the pilling.
I've tried on a few Boden sweaters and always found them too oversized/fluid for my liking (corroborating Angie's observation here, and thinking they might work better for you than their stock photos suggest). My only non-vintage cashmere is from Pure Collection, another British company. Bought it a couple years ago because I fell in love with the colours (the striped one below), and it's held up pretty well. I shave it yearly but it seems like a reasonable amount of maintenance for newish cashmere.
DH has a couple merino/cashmere blend sweaters from Woolovers, yet another British brand, that have held up remarkably well; they haven't pilled at all and still look nearly new after three years.
This year, I've had my eye on cardigans from two Instagram-trendy brands (Babaa and L'Envers; one is Spanish and the other French), but am struggling with spending so much on sweaters when I could probably find vintage knitwear (Aran, Fair Isle, Icelandic) with more character for a fraction of the price, if I still had the time to scour thrift stores like I used to.
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I'm surprised at all the love for merino wool. I find it incredibly itchy and uncomfortable. Plus, it seems to be used in basic, slim fitting or body con styles. I did buy a few from BR a couple of years ago when they offered a sweatshirt style in merino, but it snagged so easily . I've never had any merino I liked. Interesting .
LaP - I'll have to check Uniqlo out more seriously. Their website turns me off, admittedly, so I've never ordered.
Hadilly - thank you for the suggestions - not familiar with the Eric Bompard brand !
Coming back to say how lovely the Bompard sweaters are, but it doesn't look like they are available in Canada , sadly. Probably out of my price range too though, which is just as well
Inge, I’ve had knitwear from Massimo Dutti. Another hit or miss in terms of quality, unfortunately. Their wovens are great though.
Thanks Inge - that's one heck of a selection ! I'll go through them right away
I buy sweaters from Massimo Dutti. Wouldn’t recommend cotton & cashmere, loose shape fast. Wool ones are OK, the thicker the better quality. Unfortunately sizing is inconsistent, mostly run small.
I gave up on Gap long time ago but surprisingly their cashmere is quite good although on a thicker side. I’ve had a cashmere scarf for a couple of years, no pilling. Like it more than BR.
The best merino sweaters are from COS, not itchy at all. Unfortunately COS doesn’t ship within Canada. Check out the stores next time you are in Toronto.
I own a number of pieces of Eric Bompard cashmere, too. They do ship to Canada, and don't charge the VAT when they do. You most likely will be charged duty/taxes, though. They have sales twice a year - in January, and in July/August. 30 to 50% off just about everything. Definitely much better quality than Everlane. Similar quality to Naadam. Get on their email list, and wait for sale notification.
Ugh - you’ve hit on a sore spot for me. I have a pile of expensive sweaters sitting in my closet waiting for a de-pill session. I have no wisdom, but am following this thread with interest!
I am (big surprise) with Julie on this. A sweater that has survived long enough to be sold second hand is pre-tested. I have vintage cashmere that is in amazing condition.
Another Kirkland cashmere fan here. I had a lovely lavender V neck that lasted a long time and made me happy for a small price tag. Also have a decent cashmere from Saks that is good quality, but a little small so it doesn’t see much action.
Like Kari (?) above, I’ve moved to sweatshirts. I have a workhorse from Boden, and another winner from Scotch & Soda. They’re fun, hard working and easy to care for....no drama whatsoever.
Re Massimo Dutti cashmere.......I bought a winter white cashmere sweater there last winter. Very disappointing. It started looking shabby after just a few wears. A wasted $200.
I picked up three H&M turtleneck sweaters for a bargain price a couple of months ago and LOVE THEM.
Absolutely no itch factor and the collars don't get saggy even after wearing them all day
Inge - I've been eyeing the brown MD cardigan you posted. Love the colour and slouchy fit. It starts at a small so I may be sized out. I'm going to pop in to my store today to see what they've got. Their cashmere always looks so lovely but I think I'll avoid it unless I see a positive review somewhere. I'm also liking the stone colour they've used for the silk/wool sweaters. I like my neutrals!
@inge you ROCK. I need some basic knits in lush colors this winter. I had forgotten about Massimo Dutti. I'll try those silk wool turtlenecks and report back.
Thanks for the Massimo Dutti suggestions. I was unfamiliar with this brand. Lots appealed to me. I’ve ordered a v-neck silk wool blend in a lovely ocean color. If I like its fit and quality I might order another in a dark green.
I’m trying to order 2 sweaters from the MD site and can’t get past entering in my mobile number . “Prefix incorrect “ . Seriously ? This is exactly what can stop and on line order from going forward . Next .
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