Alpaca is a luxury fiber shorn yearly from a petite member of the camelid family. Once shorn, alpaca fleece can be made into yarn and fabric with an incredibly soft feel. Alpaca sweaters,alpaca socks and other clothing made from baby alpaca yarn are lightweight yet warm, allowing you to wear them comfortably without feeling overheated. Alpaca fiber is stronger than wool, resulting in alpaca sweaters, coats and blankets that can last for generations and becoming treasured heirlooms.
Alpaca socks are warm and comfortable and ensure you have happy feet at the end of the day whether you are outside in the cold or inside on your feet all day. We offer a selection of dress socks that are a lightweight, year round, trouser sock. Our two most popular styles of socks are our alpaca boot socks which are loved by hunters and others who spend time outdoors in cold weather. These alpaca socks keep your feet toasty warm while allowing for good airflow to your feet to keep them comfortable and dry. Our therapeutic alpaca socks are designed with a loose fit through the calf, specifically for those with diabetes or circulatory problems. We find that many people just love how soft they feel against their feet either used as an everyday sock or for lounging around the house.
Alpaca is easy to care for, alpaca sweaters and other garments can be hand washed. Our alpaca socks can be machine washed. For detailed care instructions, see our page on cleaning alpaca.
Why Knit, Crochet and Weave with Alpaca?
We spend so much time creating lovely knit, crochet and woven items; doesn¿t it make sense to work with a yarn that feels wonderful running through your fingers as we work with it and will be treasured for a lifetime by those we give them too? I love the feel of a beautiful baby alpaca yarn whether it is a worsted or bulky yarn. And there is nothing better than giving someone a beautiful, soft, alpaca sweater you have knit and that you know they will truly wear and enjoy. Now, I don¿t knit socks myself, but I do have a lot of respect for those that do. My sock knitting friends tell me that there is nothing better than a hand knit pair of alpaca socks.
Beyond the wonderful feel of working with baby alpaca yarn, and the assurance that your gifts will be enjoyed, creating with alpaca has all of the benefits listed above. It is a lightweight yet warm fiber that is very strong and durable. We offer a wide selection of superfine and baby alpaca yarns from two companies, Plymouth Yarns and The Alpaca Yarn Company. These are available in a variety of colors and weights. We also feature yarns from our own alpacas, sheared yearly by our family. These made in the USA alpaca yarns are all natural, undyed yarns in a range of the 22 color groups represented by our alpacas, including true blacks, grays, browns, fawns, and whites.
Why Spin with Alpaca?
I learned to spin on a lovely Border Leicester sheep's fleece. From there I visited a fiber fair in Northern Virginia where I couldn¿t resist buying 'a little bit' of every kind of fiber I saw. As I worked my way through the fleeces of various sheep, llama, alpaca, angora goat (mohair), angora rabbits (angora), as well as some silk and cotton, I discovered my favorite: Alpaca. As I worked washing, hand carding and spinning this lovely huacaya alpaca fleece, I decided to focus all my spinning efforts on alpaca fiber. In my case it led to raising alpacas, and an ongoing education of the joy of alpaca fiber.
There are two types of alpaca fiber, Suri and Huacaya. Suri fleeces are lustrous and silky and are wonderful for spinning lace weight yarns. Huacaya fleeces have a lofty, crimpy texture and produce wonderful yarns for a variety of purposes. Alpacas come in 22 color groups with wide variations of shades within each group. They produce naturally colored fleeces in shades of non-fading true blacks, bay blacks, grays, mahogany, browns, fawns, beige, whites, and multicolors. We raise Huacaya alpacas in all colors that produce beautiful fiber for spinning lovely, all natural, undyed yarns. Alpaca fiber also takes dye wonderfully, increasing your options.
We have rovings in all grades of alpaca: royal baby alpaca, baby alpaca, superfine alpaca, fine, medium, and even coarse fiber with a higher micron count from leg and belly fiber (3rds) which works great for rugs and basket making. All our alpaca rovings are Virginia grown right here at our farm. The fleeces are sheared from our colorful herd by our family and processed in small US fiber mills. I invite those of you who have never experienced the joy of spinning alpaca fiber to try one of our lovely alpacas' rovings. For those of you who have spun alpaca, you know what I mean when I say it is a joy to spin. Enjoy browsing through the range of natural colors and fiber grades to choose the perfect fiber for your next project.
Try our alpaca rovings for wet felting and needle felting as well.
Why Raise Alpacas?
Alpacas are gentle and colorful creatures that produce incredible fiber every year. They are environmentally friendly animals that are easy on the land. Alpacas only have bottom teeth in the front of their mouths which they use against the hard palate on the top of their mouth to break off grass as they eat. This eating style prevents them from grazing too closely to the ground and damaging the roots of the grass. They are also extremely efficient eaters, needing to eat only 1-2% of their body weight per day. At an average weight of 150 pounds, that¿s only 1.5-3 pounds of grass/hay/grain per day. This is one reason why alpacas do so well on small farms. You can raise 4-8 alpacas per acre, limiting the need for having a large farm to raise them.
Alpacas have sweet temperaments and are intelligent animals with unique personalities, which make them fun to interact with as individuals. They can be easily haltered trained and are good with children. They are raised for their wonderful fiber as well as breeding stock. Visit our website, www.peacefulheartalpacas.com to learn more about our alpacas.