Boden’s Cashmere Collection Is As Cozy As It Is Conscious
Boden’s Cashmere Is Easy To Love—And Just As Easy To Care For
A few months ago, I won my first-ever Instagram giveaway—the joy! A high-end brand sent me a generous gift card, and I decided to grab its best-selling cashmere cardigan. I’d never owned anything cashmere before, so I didn’t know what to expect. Boy, did I fall in love. It was endlessly soft and effortlessly cozy, quickly becoming my most-layered piece, even on warm California days.
When I had the chance to try Boden’s new cashmere collection, I wondered if the experience would be the same—or maybe even better? Would that even be possible?
As it turns out, yes. Yes, it can.
While Boden has been around in the UK since 1991 (the year of my birth—a good one!), I only became more familiar with the brand in recent years as it expanded to serve the US market. Focused on timeless styles for all genders and ages, Boden is more sustainable than most major apparel brands, too.
More than 60 percent of its cotton is sustainably sourced (with a goal of 100 percent by 2023), and all viscose, the brand’s second most-used fabric, will transition to Lenzing Ecovero Viscose by the end of 2022. While pieces do include some polyester, most of it is recycled; the team’s goal is to use only 100 percent recycled polyester within the next 13 months.
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Its cashmere, in particular, is certified by the Good Cashmere Standard. In partnership with Aid by Trade Foundation, Boden’s cashmere is sustainably and responsibly sourced, traceable, and mindful of fair working conditions and animal welfare.
Ethically and sustainably made? Mostly machine-washable and low maintenance? I could get on board with that, because who has the time or preference to hand-wash these days? Not I!
I decided to try these pieces from Boden’s Cashmere Collection: Cashmere Cuff Detail Sweater, Cashmere Frill Neck Sweater, Anna Cashmere Sweater, Cashmere Pleat Detail Cardigan, Cathryn Cashmere Sweater, Wilton Cashmere Robe, and Cashmere Bed Socks.
Each was individually wrapped in recycled paper and plastic packaging (which I found quite excessive), arriving in one recycled—and recyclable—delivery box. Boden aims to use fully recycled packaging by 2025. I’m hopeful that will cut down on excess packaging over time, too.
And let me tell you, as someone who practically lives in sweaters, these are all top-notch.
A note: Boden’s sizes vary across collections, so I was cautious about finding the right size for each individual sweater. I recommend taking the extra few minutes to go through a piece’s respective size guide and your preferred fit, even if you’re relatively sure. Okay, let’s get into it!
I first received the Cashmere Cuff Detail Sweater in “Carnelian Red.” The color is so rich and perfect for fall, a gorgeous blend of rust and red. And when I put it on, the sweater fit like a glove (well, actually, like a sweater). The loose-fit and cuffs were just right, though the cuffs can be undone if you want. On a scale of one to ten for coziness, this was definitely a rare ten. And as a bonus, I got tons of compliments on this one when paired with my rouge-y lipstick.
Next up was the Cathryn Cashmere Sweater in Fire Opal, a color most akin to tan or buckwheat. With a statement collar and deep V-neck, it reminded me of a cross between a nautical sailor and preppy collegiate—in a good way! I purposely ordered this one a size up for an oversized fit; it ended up being a bit too big (oops), but this sweater is also incredibly soft and comfortable. I have yet to layer this over a top, but I imagine it’d feel like wrapping myself up like a burrito. I give this a nine out of ten.
And—okay—we have to talk about the Wilton Cashmere Robe (above, right). It’s made with pure cashmere from Inner Mongolia and designed with a tie waist and deep pockets—three of my favorite traits. While it’s technically called a robe, I consider it more of a long wrap cardigan. It lands right around my shin and looks beautiful with or without tying the waist. I’ve already spent a sick day in it for added comfort—I can’t wait to wear the piece for less-sick-more-spa days, too.
The $400 price tag is an investment, one I don’t take lightly. But if you are looking for something ethical, sustainable, long-lasting, and versatile, this does check all four boxes. (Paired with the Cashmere Bed Socks, seen above? Ooh wee, are you in for a snuggly good time.)
For a simple black turtleneck sweater, I really enjoyed the Anna Cashmere Sweater (below, left—Tan France would love my attempt at a French tuck). It’s thick, well-fitting, and a wonderful essential for a winter capsule wardrobe. Rating: 8.5/10!
The Frill Neck Sweater, which I got in cream, is a delicate piece I would most definitely wear in a more formal setting. I like that the frills/scalloped edges easily fold up on the sleeves, and it would work beautifully with pearl drop earrings or riding boots. Eight thumbs up out of 10.
And finally, the Cashmere Pleat Detail Cardigan (below, right), which I got in Violet Opal. In comparison to my aforementioned Instagram-giveaway-cardigan, this one is much lighter. Better for layering, I wouldn’t necessarily wear this to stay warm, but it does add a nice pop to any outfit given the color and blouson sleeves. I have to admit, I am quite taken with the buttons though—they are adorable. I’d rate this a seven on my scale, but that’s still impressive!
Best of all, these pieces have been incredibly easy to care for. Cashmere doesn’t need to be washed every time it’s worn, but even so, Boden makes it simple. Though the labels suggest hand-washing when possible, the brand’s cashmere is still mostly machine-washable (check your label to be sure).
I used my washer’s default Gentle/Delicates cycle, then rolled up each piece in a towel to remove excess moisture. Cashmere doesn’t do well on hangers, so I laid it flat overnight to dry. There was a teensy bit of pilling but that’s to be expected with this fabric; nothing a comb couldn’t help fix. And voila, good as new.
My closet holds everything from Loft cotton cardigans to oversized wool sweaters to vintage turtlenecks (I told you I wear a lot of sweaters!), but almost none compare to the sheer softness and warmth of these cashmere pieces. I’m confident that they’ll hold up beautifully year after year, the classic styles will last far beyond trends, and that I’ll love throwing on one of these cozy and conscious sweaters every single time.
—Use code C4E8 for 15% off plus free shipping & returns over $49—
THIS ARTICLE IS IN PARTNERSHIP WITH OUR FRIENDS AT BODEN.
Henah Velez (she/her) is an Editor at The Good Trade. She holds a Master’s in Social Entrepreneurship and is a proud Rutgers grad. Originally from NJ, Henah’s now in Santa Barbara, CA, where she loves shopping small, hanging with her pets, or traveling. Say hi on Instagram!