On Location in Nepal, Part 2: Hit the Heights

*Note: This is Part 2 of a two-part blog post.

In our previous blog post, we shared some favorite moments from the Casana team’s video shoot on location in Kathmandu. But our fantastic Nepali voyage was far from over, and the next leg of our adventure would prove to be the most uplifting – literally!

Led by founder and Creative Director Carrie Chen, we journeyed deep into the Himalayan Mountains by helicopter. Our ultimate destination was Kobang, a remote community in Nepal’s Upper Mustang region (along the Tibetan border). The locals have built their homes in and around the foothills of the mountains, which makes for pretty great views. Here are our own special “highlights”:

Recognize this prominent peak? It’s Mt. Nilgiri, part of the world’s highest mountain range. And Carrie had a direct view of it from her window! Tourists are not allowed to climb Nilgiri, as it’s believed the mountain is holy, so this is the closest one can get to its grandeur.

In her own words, our fearless leader believes “Seeing the landscape from above is the only way to truly experience the beauty of Nepal. When I was in the helicopter, I was afraid to blink because every second the mountains, clouds, and landscape would change. It was absolutely breathtaking.”

These very pictures prove her right. Look at how different these two views of the same village are, taken while soaring over Kobang.

The Upper Mustang is historically one of the most preserved areas in the world. Formerly the Kingdom of Lo, a dependent territory of the Kingdom of Nepal, it was a restricted demilitarized zone until 1992 and has kept many traditions alive today that mix Tibetan and Nepali customs. Foreigners still need special permission to enter this region. If you travel there on foot, you can even use the same road that was a major trade route between Nepal and China in the 15th century. (Of course, nothing beats travel by chopper!)

And did you know we had a special guest along for the ride? The wonderful Asmi Shrestha, Miss Nepal of 2016 (she also competed in the Miss World pageant, placing in Beauty with a Purpose’s Top 5), was our Casana scarf model for the video shoot. You’ll see more of her in future posts. Immense thanks to our terrific crew, pictured below – we were blessed to have their hard work, dedication, and good cheer to make this project a success.

 ( From left to right: local production assistant Tsering Dorje, Asmi Shrestha, director Adri Berger, local guide Nobu San and his assistant, Casana founder Carrie Chen, and production photographer Yumiko Izu )

(From left to right: local production assistant Tsering Dorje, Asmi Shrestha, director Adri Berger, local guide Nobu San and his assistant, Casana founder Carrie Chen, and production photographer Yumiko Izu)

More info about this amazing trip will be coming in the next weeks, but now you have a good idea of why this beautiful country means so much to us. Not only is its land majestic, it carries a strong spiritual aura that connects to all the people and animals who live there. In Nepal, we are all truly one.

On Location in Nepal, Part 1: We Kathmandu!

*Note: This is Part 1 of a two-part blog post.

As we say here at Casana, fashion is about caring and sharing. Sometimes part of that sharing is taking old traditions and making them new (like we love to do with our handwoven scarves). So to get some style inspiration for our latest collections, we headed “home” to Nepal, where our cashmere is harvested and manufactured. We shot some cool videos on our adventure – which we’ll be sharing soon – but for now, here are some of the greatest moments from the trip!

Our group’s first stop: the big city of Kathmandu. Nepal’s capital is the cultural center of the nation, home to more people than any other metropolis in the Himalayan region. During the first day’s location scouting, we visited the historic Swayambhunath temple. Nicknamed “Monkey Temple” for the hundreds of monkeys that reside in and around the structure, Swayambhunath is actually one of the most sacred Buddhist pilgrimage sites in the world. So peaceful and majestic, it’s been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

See that dome-shaped structure rising above the rest of the temple? It’s called a stupa, and signifies a building designated as a Buddhist shrine. Stupas are popular in Nepali architecture, as we found out on our trip.

The monkeys living at Swayambhunath are believed to be holy, according to a legend that says they grew from the head lice of the Manjusree Bodhisattva (the embodiment of Buddhist wisdom). But one simian acted a little more like Curious George when we arrived. This fun-loving fellow stole our group’s flowers, hoping to eat them. He was disappointed when they didn’t taste as good as they looked.

After getting up-close-and-personal with Kathmandu’s wildlife, we took off on a modern magic carpet ride. For the second part of location shooting, we were heading high into the mountainous villages nestled around the Tibetan border. The best way to get there? By helicopter!

Flying over Kathmandu, we got a gorgeous overhead view of Boudhanath, the city’s largest stupa and the building that dominates its skyline. The aptly-named Great Stupa is ancient, dating back to the 500s C.E., and its history contains many myths tying it directly to Buddha. Fallout from the April 2015 earthquake badly damaged the temple’s original structure, and the reconstruction process has fitted Boudhanath with a new central pole or “life tree” at the top of the dome. Like Swayambhunath, Boudhanath has also been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Kathmandu was incredible, but what mysteries would the Himalayan peaks reveal to the Casana team? Find out in our next blog post!

Our 2017 Collection Has Arrived!


There’s no better time than summer to embrace originality in fashion. In honor of new adventures, the Casana team is proud to announce the arrival of our 2017 collection!

We believe that fashion should always strive to be part of someone’s personal narrative. Our latest releases are a testament to this; each design has a history all its own. We’re unveiling several new product lines within our 2017 collection, all crafted with different styles in mind. Wherever your journey takes you, we’ve got you covered.

Here's a rundown of what the 2017 collection includes:

  • CLASSIC: Some looks are simply timeless. The old souls among us know this very well. Our classic scarves are made of deluxe Himalayan cashmere, hand-embroidered by Nepali and Mongolian artisans. These elegant designs include traditional beadwork and perfectly symbolize a meeting of the minds between Eastern and Western philosophy. You can find some of our favorites from this line on the website now.
  • CONTEMPORARY: For those who enjoy modern twists on their favorite accessories, we've added bold contemporary designs. These chic scarves combine decadent cashmere with shimmery Lurex, creating a dramatic look that lends the wearer an instant spotlight wherever she goes. You can find some of our favorites from this line on the website now.
  • SOLID: Certain items are in the fashionista's handbook - you must have a little black dress, a crisp white button-down, and a great pair of jeans that ages like fine wine. We say, add a bright-colored solid scarf to that list, and you'll be forever on point. These accent pieces are made from the softest cashmere available. Slip one on and let its fresh, energizing vibes inspire you.
  • MELANGE: One of Casana's core beliefs is that fashion should enhance your natural beauty. There's nothing more natural than these gorgeous dye-free scarves. Feel closer to earth with designs that retain the essence of their Himalayan roots. Zen moments have never looked better.
  • PRINT: Want your outfit to make a statement? You'll love these patterned scarves, each one an eye-catching work of art in lightweight cashmere. From traditional Mongolian designs (like the intricate ikat) to brilliant splashes of color, the pieces in this line will easily help you piece standout ensembles together.
  • LUXURY FUR: As a classic fashion campaign used to say, "What becomes a legend most?" The answer was then and still is, "A little fur, darling." True, this glamorous style isn't for everyone, but if you're eager to embrace your inner movie star, these cashmere scarves mixed with luxurious fur are your ideal wraps. The wide variety of solid colors and print designs within this line will surely make you ready for your closeup.
  • BABY PRODUCTS: Casana products truly spring from love (our founder, Carrie Chen, was inspired to start the company while bonding with her daughters). So it's no surprise that our 2017 collection includes items for the most precious members of your family. Babies will feel instant comfort when they're wrapped in our super-soft cashmere throws. These lush blankets come in several different colors and traditional Mongolian prints, all of which keep your little ones happy and safe - even when mom has to step out of reach.
  • TRAVEL SET: At Casana we love connecting you to your next adventure. With this line of ready-to-travel products, you'll be jetting from one city to another in fabulous style. In our versatile cashmere, you'll feel like a citizen of the world in no time.
  • PONCHOS AND WRAPS: Want more coverage? We're wild about scarves, but sometimes a girl needs a slightly more substantial wrap. We get it. That's why our ponchos give you the best of all possible worlds - same glorious cashmere, new structure and durability. They're perfect transitional pieces for when seasons change and summer starts fading into fall.

Thanks for being friends and fans of Casana. The adventures are just beginning.

Welcome to New York

Friends of Casana, thanks for your loyalty. We’ve had many new developments since our last blog post, and there are a lot more in store that we think you’re really going to enjoy!

First, a practical change: We have relocated our head office from Bellevue, WA to the fashion capital of Manhattan, NY, and we have also opened a studio/office space in Copake, NY. While the main phone number remains the same, the new address of our head office is as follows:

117 East 57th Street, #32F

New York, NY 10022

In other news, our Founder and Creative Director Carrie Chen is currently working with Casana designers on the 2016 collection, which will have a special focus on home products like throws and rugs. Remember, good design isn’t just about what you wear, but about cultivating a whole atmosphere that makes you feel relaxed and confident and the best self you can possibly be. Time to match your living space to your personality!

Casana’s 2016 collection will also feature more varieties of solid-colored scarves in different weaves and our new ikat print. We will soon be introducing a new type of cashmere as well that comes from Mongolia. At Casana we love celebrating the beauty of East meets West and we know you will too. More updates on our latest collection and the Casana team’s adventures to come – we’re so glad you can join us on this journey!

Here's a video we've created

Here's a video we've created - A brief video with some helpful suggestions about how to style and wrap a few of our favorite scarves from the collection.

Filmmaker Richard Schenkman (http://www.richardschenkman.com/) flew up from Hollywood, while gorgeous and popular style blogger Margarita of http://macaroonchic.com/acted as our model and stylist.

This shoot was the kind of creative collaboration we enjoy so much, and it was fun, too! The sun was shining and a cool breeze made the air fresh and brisk. Passers-by smiled and watched, intrigued by the beautiful textiles and the stunning model.

We hope you like it!

An Inside Look at Our New 2015 Collection

Shown: Tropical, Chintz, Azulejo, Aztec and Toucan.

At Casana, we believe that great fashion tells a story, and our new 2015 collection fully embraces this belief. Exploring the ethereal intersection of culture, history and nature, each new pattern pays tribute to a place and a poignant moment in time. From the rich, soul-searching culture of ancient Aztecs to the exotic, untouched coastlines of Southeast Asia that our founder Carrie Chen frequented as a child, a story of admiration and intrigue unfolds in each cashmere scarf. With six new intricate patterns and 12 colorways (and plenty of beautiful ways to wear the scarves!), we hope our new collection inspires women everywhere to live boldly and memorably.


Read a little more about the inspiration behind each design:



Azulejo is a centuries-old tile motif that adorns everything from walls of churches and monasteries to palaces, houses, park seats and railway stations throughout Spain and Portugal. They often portray beautiful landscapes, scenes from history or dramatic architecture. Inspired by their classic and cultured detailing, Carrie reinterpreted the traditional characteristics with a decidingly feminine touch.



Paisley, a droplet-shaped vegetable motif originally of Persian descent (and then named after Paisley, a West Scotland town where the textile patterns were produced in the 18th century) is often characterized by colorful and curvy abstract figures. Here, the popular pattern is given a moody color palette and an intricate, refined design.



After much time spent in Nepal, with its large population of Hindus, Carrie was drawn to the Chintz pattern worn by the local Hindi women. The motif originated from India in 16th century, and it is still used for bed covers, quilts and draperies today. Commonly presented as a brightly colored floral pattern on a light background, our version both light and dark backgrounds for a sophisticated interpretation.



For ancient Aztecs, every symbol had a meaning that was connected to a spirit or a message from the past. Carrie chose a rose motif, often denoted as a symbol for life, and set it within vibrant, Southwest-inspired colors to embody the true essence of its meaning. Great for use as a headscarf or draping loosely around your neck, this high-style cashmere scarf is one-of-a-kind and sure to make a chic statement.



The exotic bird and flora pattern is a wearable reminder of nature’s immense and vast beauty, inspired by designer Carrie Chen’s childhood holidays to Southeast Asia. With so many of us cherishing fond memories made during coastal holidays with friends and family, this scarf’s design is highly personal.



Admired by many for its bright and varying beauty, the colorful frangipani flower is used on tropical islands for stringing beautiful, fragrant leis. In modern Polynesian culture, the flower is worn by women to indicate their relationship status—over the right ear if seeking a relationship and over the left if taken. Here, the flower mixes gorgeously amongst ferns and tropical colors in a lightweight wool and modal blend that can be worn effortlessly on a vacation or in everyday life.