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Monday, May 21, 2012

Field Trip - Alpaca Farm

Our Knitters Guild recently went on a "field trip" to an Alpaca Farm.  We had a fun morning at the farm.  The tour started with a "talk", where we learned all about alpacas, where they come from, what they eat, about their coats - shearing the fleece and how the fleece is used in making wool and wool blends.  Alpaca fleece is very soft and hypoallergenic because it doesn't contain lanolin like sheep wool does.

The farm also had it's own mill on the premises, where we saw the various stages of how the fleece becomes a skein of yarn -- From washing, drying, carding, and spinning.    I understand now why a skein of natural yarn can be so expensive, considering all the stages it must go through before you can start knitting and crocheting.  

 
fleece drying after being washed

Alpaca fleece 
some dyed fleece


4 comments:

  1. I bet that was really interesting. I love alpaca wool; so beautiful to use xx

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    Replies
    1. And what did you bring home with you? You can't go to a place like that and NOT bring home some to work on.

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    2. Well, I did get one skein of yarn (on sale), enough to make a couple of pairs of fingerless mitts in a beautiful tweedy brown, which came from the alpaca called "Rocky".

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  2. So cute, my wife would like the yarn for her cafes!

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