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The Hunt: Stylish Cashmere Sweaters for Work

cashmere sweaters for work

2017 Update: Check out our latest discussion of the most affordable cashmere for work!

Sure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

Ladies, we haven’t talked about the most stylish cashmere sweaters for work in far too long — and now is a great time to buy because there are so many sales on.  Which brands are you loving this year in terms of style, softness, durability, and more?  (Do check out our guide to cardigans for work, if you haven’t already!) Have you gotten any great deals on any cashmere lately? Which cashmere brand do you like to splurge on? 

If you’re curious, here are links to our prior roundups of the best cashmere sweaters for the office: 2015, 2014, 2012. Before we start, a few special interest categories:

affordable cashmere sweater Readers always swear by their Audrey crewnecks from Talbots — all cashmere at Talbots is on deep discount today, so if you’re on the hunt for a V-neck I’d give this pretty one a try. It was $150, but is now marked to $49.99; still available in regular, petite, plus and plus-size petites in rose, pink, orange and white.  Also in this price range: reader favorites Lord & Taylor and Lands’ End cashmere sweaters are both steeply discounted today; I’d also give this Halogen sweater a try.  Pictured: Cashmere V-Neck Sweater
cashmere for workOooh: I love the draped neck on this thin cashmere from Classiques Entier.  It’s still full price in the red, but both the black and ivory versions are 55% off — they were $198, but are now marked to $85. Classiques Entier® Drape Neck Cashmere Sweater
sloane cashmere sweaterEquipment has had its highly rated Sloane sweater around for a few seasons at least, putting it in our Workwear Hall of Fame category above — and Nordstrom has the gray and navy versions on sale for 40% off.  I love the way this gray one pairs with leopard print.  (Another Hall of Famer from Equipment: the highly rated Oscar turtleneck.) The pictured sweater was $218, but is now marked to $130. Equipment ‘Sloane’ Crewneck Sweater
Boden cashmereI like this simple, close-fitting cashmere crewneck from Boden, and it has 32 very positive reviews on the brand’s site.  And it’s machine washable! It’s available in 8 colors, sizes 2-18, for $148. Cashmere Crew Neck Sweater
bompard cashmere for workReaders always sing the praises of higher end cashmere from Eric Bompard, Brora, and Akris — and many have had great luck shopping on eBay or other consignment sites like Vestiaire and The Real Real. (Of course, proceed at your own risk — educate yourself first on what a sweater of that quality looks like and feels like.) This brightly colored Eric Bompard sweater at Vestiaire is bright and happy, and looks like it’s in pretty good shape — it’s $280 at Vestiaire.  Eric Bompard Vest
stylish cashmere sweater officeI love the drape of this sweater from Bottega Veneta, and I always think a V-neck is one of the most flattering shapes. It’s $1,110 at Net-a-Porter. Bottega Veneta Cashmere sweater

Like this feature? Check out other recent installments!

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The Hunt: Stylish Cashmere Sweaters for Work

 

Comments

  1. Question, interview tomorrow, they selected me based on my “old” resume, I’ve made updates based on professional suggestions, I wasn’t going to bring the new version for fear of confusion, is that the right choice?

    • Has the content materially changed (ie: new accomplishments to list) or just formatting?

      • I was going to ask this as well – if the updated version shows new accomplishments, duties, etc then I would bring it. But if these were primarily cosmetic changes, I would bring the old version.

    • If it is just formatting, I’d skip because the interviewers usually bring a copy anyway.
      But if something new came up I’d bring the recent version and give it to interviewers.

  2. Anonymous :

    Interview question as well – suggestions for interviewing for an in-house non-profit or government job? Any specific advice would be appreciated!

    • Yay! I love Cashemere Sweater’s but crew neck ONLEY b/c Frank alway’s peered down my Vneck’s to see what color bra I was wearing so I stopped wearing Vneck’s….now, he just come’s up to me when I am wearing a cashemere sweater and start’s petting me like a lapdog. FOOEY b/c his hands go to places they do NOT belong–like my boobies. DOUBEL FOOEY!

      As for the OP, alway’s OVERDRESS, meaning more formal then you might need to wear AFTER you get the job. You will appear smarter then you would if you came in causally, and you need to make a good impression. Also, do NOT wear low cut clotheing or short skirt’s, b/c you are interviewing for a profesional position, not as a hooker. Also, do NOT go out with anyone for drink’s b/c that is how I wound up looseing an offer from a guy in DC–I said I would go out for drink’s after the interview, and he started putting the moves on me and I told him NO WAY HOZE, and the next thing you know, NO JOB OFFER AFTER ALL.

      Men can be porcine (dad’s word for PIG-LIKE), so know this and you will preserve your sexueal status at the firm. YAY!!!

  3. I like Uniqlo ones and they perfectly fit my petite frame.
    After 2 years of washing, there is a tiny bit of pilling but no deformation of shape.

  4. My two nominees are the NM house brand and Brooks Brothers.

    • +1 to the NM brand. My favorite is a long navy cardigan from them.

      I used to love the Lands End cashmere but I think it is no longer as good. However you vintage/thrift shop customers should keep an eye out. It was great back in the day – thick and not the tiniest bit scratchy. You will be able to tell from how it feels.

  5. My Boden cashmere is great, nice and fitted, medium thickness, great with jeans and with skirts. The fact that it is machine washable is a huge plus too.

  6. Ethical Quandry :

    Weird ethical question for the hive. I had a nasty surprise over the weekend when I had drinks with my boyfriend and his (high-school) ex girlfriend. She is one of his oldest friends and now a lesbian – I was excited to be included and to meet her!

    It went terribly. She and he essentially ignored me the entire evening. She literally did not say a word to me. Meanwhile, she kept calling him “honey” and “sweetie,” and touching him on the thigh. Thought that was weird, but whatever. However, when I came back from the bathroom, she had moved to be sitting beside him, arm around him, and was telling him that she’s no longer gay because she remembers how much she likes “f$cking men.” I actually had to make up an excuse and leave. (BF left too – he was also freaked out).

    Ok here is the question. This woman is a minister of a small church to which I also happen to belong. She was in town for an interview for a job with the church. For a good part of the evening with her, she (drunkenly?) rambled on about how hard it is to be a pastor. She told shockingly detailed stories about pastoring her congregants – the most personal, horrifying events you can imagine. She revealed really specific details – not names, but where exactly someone lived, family make-ups, hospital names. I am certain if I knew any of the people, I could identify them. Not only did she share these incredibly private stories, but she also spoke so negatively about her church members – she was judgmental and unkind.

    This whole experience really shocked me, especially as a member of this church. It felt like such a moral breach to gossip about things told in such confidence. Like a therapist or doctor talking about patients in identifiable ways. A large part of me feels like I should contact the church organization and report this woman. But I can’t tell if I am just being a jealous girlfriend with clouded judgement. Was this woman in the wrong? What would you do?

    • Anonymous :

      She was wrong.
      I would have asked her to stop talking about her congregants and remind her of the ethical obligations as a pastor. The convivial evening would have ended right then but you skipped early anyway.

    • Don’t contact the church. It may have shocked you and it was absolutely in poor taste, but sadly, many pastors/therapists/doctors DO talk about patients, but without saying their name. Their jobs are stressful, so I don’t blame them for needing to vent, even if it is not the greatest idea.

      Ministers are people too-they sometimes have poor judgement. Sometimes they are unkind when they think they’re in a “safe space” with friends.

      What concerns me more isn’t this pastor–it’s the fact that your boyfriend ignored you too during all this. You said she didn’t say a word to you, but he ignored you as well–that’s a problem that needs to be addressed more than this woman.

    • Senior Attorney :

      Presumably your church will have some sort of pastoral selection process, no? I think it’s entirely appropriate for you to share what you know with a member of the committee in whatever way is normal for sharing any feedback about a candidate. If it gets that far.

      I say this as somebody who was once on a pastoral selection committee that made a huge mistake, in part because people with relevant information didn’t come forward for fear of seeming biased or whatever. It turns out bad people do turn people against them, but that’s relevant information for the committee!!

      • Senior Attorney :

        Coming back to say this advice only applies if she is interviewing at the church you actually attend. Otherwise I think I’d let it go and avoid her in the future.

    • Anonymous :

      She was wrong, but I don’t think you should do anything. Your motives aren’t clear either.

    • Just like any profession, ministers/pastors/priests have good ones and bad ones. She definitely sounds like a bad one.

      Some people try to flee from the bad things about themselves by becoming a “holy person.” It usually doesn’t work. Perhaps this is the case her.

      If I were you I’d do everything in my power to avoid being with this woman again.

    • I would ignore it UNLESS the interview is with the church you attend. In that case I would call them and let them know.

    • This story makes no sense.

    • Daughter of a minister here. Yes, there are good/bad ministers but it ABSOLUTELY a professional, ethical and moral breach to speak about one’s congregants in such a manner. I don’t know what church you belong to or what their organizing body is like, but this behavior is unacceptable. It can cause irreparable harm to individuals and the community. (I saw the damage caused by my father’s predecessor and it was ugly.) Speak up.

    • It sounds clear to me that she’s interviewing for a job at the church you attend, yes? ABSOLUTELY get in touch with the selection committee. I would just tell them the story as you’ve told it here and they can come to their own conclusions about whether or not you are “biased.” She displayed so many errors in judgment from this story–not just sharing personal details and speaking insultingly about the people she serves, but doing so while in town for an interview–she should not have assumed that you weren’t attached to the community. Also, behaving inappropriately with someone else’s partner. Just. No. FWIW, I have a degree in ministry and am seriously involved in my own church.

  7. HopefulBigLawSummer :

    Question for the BigLaw attorneys out there. I’m a first year law student at a fairly well ranked and very locally respected school. I have excellent grades and good connections at the firms I applied to.

    I had an interview last week (Wednesday) for a summer associate position. I think it went really well, and I really loved the firm. I would love to end up somewhere this summer that I can stay at for next summer and beyond. Neither the recruiter nor anyone at the firm has contacted me since the interview. I sent a thank you email to only the recruiter and the hiring manager (who interviewed me), and haven’t heard anything.

    I have another offer from BigLaw firm B that expires on Friday (which firm A knows). A is far and away my first choice (which they also know through the dean of my law school who contacted them Friday to put in a good word).

    1) Should I contact firm A on Thursday afternoon if I still haven’t heard anything? Call or email?
    2) Is it a bad sign that I haven’t heard from the recruiter? I’ve heard they send rejections via snail mail.
    3) How tacky is asking firm B for an extension on Thursday if A still hasn’t decided?

    • I am on my firm’s summer hiring committee. I suggest contacting Firm A on Wednesday morning — call the recruiter, gently remind him/her that you owe a response to another firm on Friday, and ask if it is possible for you to get a sense of whether Firm B will be extending you an offer before then?

      Don’t wait until Thursday afternoon. You want to give them time to go behind the scenes, talk to committee members (if there are any), etc., to get you an answer. I wouldn’t find it out of line if you call Tuesday afternoon either.

      • I would call the recruiter for Firm A on Wednesday morning — early, between 9-10 — for the reasons blue gives. I think blue meant to say Firm A twice in her hypo sentence though :)

        If Firm A’s hiring committee can’t get it together in time, I would explain to Firm B that you are carefully considering all your options and are very serious about them, but would like to have a few extra days in light of unexpected delays at other prospective firms.

    • I had firms offer me immediately and firms offer to extend my time to reply when I informed them of my situation. I would go with B.

  8. itsme1987 :

    What is everyone wearing today?

    I’m wearing: blush shell, grey skirt, mauve boyfriend cardigan, grey and ivory striped pointy flats, rose gold watch, rose gold/blush/clear short beaded necklace.

    • I’m wearing a Broncos orange victory dress. :) (Rebecca Taylor dropped waist flared skirt with cap sleeves) With nude heels and and tan/cream jacket.

      • Also in Broncos victory colors! Burnt orange top, navy blazer and shoes, gray pants, gold jewelry. I’ve never actually done navy and orange before and I thought I’d be meh about it, but I’m actually really liking it!

        • Cool, is this going on your blog?
          I was considering a navy cardigan and shoes but thought I’d be a little more discrete ;) I’m actually in a neutral territory.

        • itsme1987 :

          I love navy and orange together. I also like adding camel into that combination.

    • KS IT Chick :

      Black slacks, white rayon button-down shirt, red leather jacket, black flats & belt, gold hoop earrings.

    • Anonymous :

      I’m in New England and we’re closed today, (snow day!) but what I was going to wear: charcoal brown flannel pants, periwinkle cashmere tneck, navy blazer, navy/ brown/ periwinkle paisley silk scarf, navy suede loafers. I guess I’ll be wearing that tomorrow.

    • that sounds cute!

      I’m in skinny jeans (very casual software company, but would replace with black skinny pants for a more formal place) with pointy gray snakeskin flats, a boatneck striped cream and black sweater, and a bright cobalt blue scarf that has gray and cream pattern. diamond studs earrings, rose gold, mother of pearl, and stainless steel watch, rose gold tory burch fitbit bracelet.

    • Anonymous :

      Black J. Crew flats, heathered gray tights, black knee-length pencil skirt, heathered gray long tank top, and a gray dolman sweater. :-)

    • I’m in a hunter green and houndstooth shift dress, black tights, and flat black booties- aka the most comfortable outfit ever for what is turning out to

      • Yikes let’s try that again. I’m in a hunter green and black houndstooth shift dress, black tights, and flat black booties- aka the most comfortable outfit ever for post Superbowl food comas.

    • I am wearing grey pants, a fitted blush cabled sweater with a white tank layered underneath, a grey cabled infinity scarf (because it is cold as the North Pole in here), and grey leopard print flats. My jewelry is pink resin flower stud earrings, a grey “ceramic” and rose gold watch, and a rose gold small initial necklace (which you cannot see under my infinity scarf!).

    • Eileen fisher skirted leggings, sleeveless tunic top, long beige cardigan, clogs, natural color silver akoya pearls. Yay working from home!

      Cardigan is too warm. Yay Bay Area!

    • Anonymous :

      Black Limited shell, gray NY&C cardigan, burgundy Loft trousers, and some awesome black pumps with zippers on the front.

  9. itsme1987, your outfit sounds so cute. I’m in the most boring outfit ever created, but telling myself it’s a sophisticated monochromatic look. Glen plaid trousers that read gray, charcoal gray merino V-neck and long cardigan from Uniqlo, multistrand necklace of pearls, silver beads and chains and gray tweed chunky-heel pumps.

    • HopefulBigLawSummer :

      Question for the BigLaw attorneys out there. I’m a first year law student at a fairly well ranked and very locally respected school. I have excellent grades and good connections at the firms I applied to.

      I had an interview last week (Wednesday) for a summer associate position. I think it went really well, and I really loved the firm. I would love to end up somewhere this summer that I can stay at for next summer and beyond. Neither the recruiter nor anyone at the firm has contacted me since the interview. I sent a thank you email to only the recruiter and the hiring manager (who interviewed me), and haven’t heard anything.

      I have another offer from BigLaw firm B that expires on Friday (which firm A knows). A is far and away my first choice (which they also know through the dean of my law school who contacted them Friday to put in a good word).

      1) Should I contact firm A on Thursday afternoon if I still haven’t heard anything? Email or call?
      2) Is it a bad sign that I haven’t heard from the recruiter? I’ve heard they send rejections via snail mail.
      3) How tacky is asking firm B for an extension on Thursday if A still hasn’t decided?

      • Anonymous :

        Do not ask B for an extension. Firm A knows. If they are going to give you an offer, they will have done it by Thursday.

    • itsme1987 :

      Thanks Jules! And your outfit sounds amazing. I think monochromatic looks tend to be sophisticated, especially when different textures/patterns are added in like you did.

  10. I’d add Bloomingdale’s to the list.

    Any recs for a chiropractor in DC? I’ve heard horror stories about chiropractors but my back is such a mess.

    • Anonymous :

      If you don’t want to go the chiro route I definitely recommend looking for a physiotherapist that specializes in women’s health. After two pregnancies and many hours sitting at my desk with my legs crossed at the knee- I had really screwed up my back. 6 months of physio and I’m as good as new.

    • Look for a chiropractor trained in Canada or Europe where they are actual MDs

    • Dr Michael Moses or Kyle Reeb at Arlington Pain and Rehab are wonderful!

  11. Sweater flaws :

    I bought some Halogen cashmere sweaters during one of the big Nordies sales recently – definitely within the past 6 months. 3 out of 7 of them have holes already. We don’t have moths. No other (even older) cashmere sweaters were affected. And it’s weird the holes in the sweaters are all around the same place right in the middle of the sweater. Like I wore them with very high waisted jeans that had very abrasive belt loops? (except I didn’t and I don’t even own cool pants like that). I haven’t washed or cleaned any of them in fact I haven’t even worn them more than a few times. I don’t own a cat. It’s driving me crazy to the point where I started looking constantly in my daily routine for a snag source.

    Should I return them? I wear them to work so I can’t continue to wear them to work since they are mostly bright colors and my undershirt is apparent. Normally, once a cashmere sweater gets a hole (or seven) I just make it a lounging sweater for around the house or cooking.

    I mean they were a steal but it’s so odd that the holes aren’t at the seam, or elbow, but are all in the same place. I know Nordie’s is great about returns but this was so odd to me….I don’t know why but I feel totally weird returning them. I’ve only ever returned something because it was the wrong size so maybe it’s just regressed Catholic guilt surfacing because it’s almost Lent.

    Before this happened I would have recommended the halogen ones (I have several others also bought during Nordie’s sales with no problems that are 2-4 years old and in great shape). But I will try the others suggested to replace these 3 regardless of whether I return them.

    • anon prof :

      Could it be something on your seatbelt snagging the sweaters?

    • Seatbelt was my thought too.

    • I also didn’t like the cut of this years Halogen v-neck cashmere. I always scoop up a lot when they drop down in price, but the “lightweight” version this year is more blousy than normal and not the traditional –read preppy– look I was going for. Oh well.

  12. Check out this dress! :

    I bought the Adrianna Papell Pleated Crepe Dress in Azure from Nordstroms this weekend and am wearing it today with black tights and a black cardigan. My husband told me multiple times how stunning I looked. The dress is very flattering and striking!

  13. I’m a big fan of the Jennie Liu cashmere sweater on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/JENNIE-LIU-Cashmere-Sweater-Wisteria/dp/B01A7TJZEA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1454966328&sr=8-1&keywords=jenny+liu+cashmere

  14. Anonymous :

    How do you handle declining invitations with friends because of a scheduling conflict related to your SO? When BF and I started getting serious about 3 years ago (dating for 4), some of his friends caused a ton of drama because he wasn’t able to hang out with them as much as when he was single or before we were living together. Basically, I’m a controlling b!tch who’s stealing their friend from them.

    I have a feeling that this situation started because of BF’s comments to his friends. I don’t think it was anything malicious on his part, but he just doesn’t consider his audience when he opens his mouth. Fwiw, he’s told me things about his friends that I wish I didn’t know.

    Because of all the drama, I’ve asked BF multiple times to please not mention my name when he declines an invitation. Just say, “Sorry can’t make it, what about next week?” He initially told me he wouldn’t, but recently admitted to doing it again – BF told a friend that friend couldn’t come over because I was working from home. I understand that this would be a fine thing to say to normal people, but given how contentious everything has been with his friends, I really need him to leave me out of it and he’s just not respecting that. I would like to talk about this again when we’re both calm. Advice?

    • His friends are acting like children if they are still complaining. He doesn’t need to hide you and your needs after 4 years; let him say what he wants. If they are still all hanging out after 4 years, my guess is that they have adjusted to his scheduling constraints. Is he telling you that they are still bringing this up?

  15. Rich Imperial :

    Found your blog. Its really valuable for ladies sweater. I appreciate your article. Its important for ge good informations on cashmere wool tips. So thanks for sharing all that important information.

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