Alpaca Fiber

Alpaca fiber has a hollow core, is light and warm. Alpaca yarn is a pleasure to work with. It is easy on hands and fingers. It is smooth, does not itch, and is hypoallergenic.

Once a year, we harvest the soft fiber from our herd of alpacas and begin the process of transforming this naturally renewable resource into a fine selection of fibers and yarns. Because alpaca fiber contains no lanolin, it is processed completely without chemicals in an eco-friendly, environmentally safe way. Alpaca is a unique natural fiber that is warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

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Earth Friendly

Alpacas are naturally hypoallergenic and free of lanolin, which means harsh chemicals are not required during processing. The fiber comes in 22 natural colors and often remains un-dyed, but it can also accept plant dyes very well, which don’t irritate skin or cause pollution to the earth. Alpacas are raised in humane conditions and don’t need pesticides to control bugs and disease associated with overcrowding, which helps protect our watershed.

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Cruelty-free

Alpacas are raised in loving environments and are treasured throughout the world. Shearing is done once a year and is necessary for their good health. Their luxurious fiber is all natural and comes from thousands of years of sound breeding practices – not genetic engineering.

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green_earth

Natural fibers are a responsible choice.

Natural fibers will play a key role in the emerging “green” economy. Cultivating and processing natural fibers provides more energy efficiency, reduces carbon emissions and minimizes waste.

Natural fibers are a renewable resource– they have been renewed by nature and human ingenuity for millennia. They are also carbon neutral: they absorb the same amount of carbon dioxide they produce. During processing, they generate mainly organic wastes. At the end of their life cycle, they are 100% biodegradable.

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A recent study estimated that production of one ton of natural fiber requires 10% of the energy used for the production of one ton of synthetic fibers (since natural fiber is cultivated mainly by small-scale farmers in traditional farming systems, the main energy input is human labor, not fossil fuels). Processing of natural fiber consists mostly of biodegradable compounds, in contrast to the persistent chemicals, including heavy metals, released in the effluent from synthetic fiber processing.

The environmental benefits of natural fiber products accrue well beyond the production phase. Where natural fibers really excel is in the disposal stage of their life cycle. Since they absorb water, natural fibers decay through the action of fungi and bacteria. Natural fiber products can be composted to improve soil structure, or incinerated with no emission of pollutants and release of no more carbon than the fibers absorbed during their lifetimes.

Synthetics present society with a range of disposal problems. In land fills they release heavy metals and other additives into soil and groundwater. Recycling requires costly separation, while incineration produces pollutants and, in the case of high-density polyethylene, 3 tons of carbon dioxide emissions for every ton of material burnt.

Natural fibers are of major economic importance to many developing countries and vital to the livelihoods and food security of millions of small-scale farmers and processors, including 120,000 alpaca herding families in the Andes. By choosing natural fibers we boost the sector’s contribution to economic growth and help fight hunger and rural poverty.

Cleaning Tips

  • Coffee: Wash in warm water and soft detergent; then treat the residual stain with solvent
  • Ink: Absorb with baby powder, soak area with lemon juice and water, and then with alcohol
  • Red Wine: Wash in cold water, then soak with lemon juice and water
  • White Wine: Wash in clean water and soft detergent
  • Liqueur: Wash with soft detergent in warm water
  • Grease: Treat with solvent
  • Lipstick: Treat with alcohol
  • Chocolate: Wash with delicate detergent and then with solvent
  • Perfume: Wash with glycerin and alcohol
  • Sweat: Wash in hot water, mixed with a small quantity of ammonia, white vinegar and  then rinse with oxygenated water
  • Sauce: Treat first with delicate detergent in warm water and rinse with solvent
  • Tea: Wash in warm water and delicate detergent; leave drying between two towels
  • Make Up: Wash with solvent, then with shampoo