Alpaca & Wool from my stash!! January 28 2014

 I've dug into my stash to pull out some alpaca and wool I had blended at Shari's Morro Fleece Works. She does such a wonderful job! I just spun a bit on a drop spindle. It drafts beautifully and so can be spun any way you want: really fine or any other thickness desired.

Are you wondering why I blended alpaca with wool? Hmm? Here's the reason: every fiber, protein (from animals) that is, other than wool, is HAIR. Wool is the only wool. Even though you may hear people speak in terms of the wool from this or that animal, sheep are the only animals that grow wool. Hair has no bounce, no resilience. Even a little bit of wool blended with a hair fiber will give it more resilience. I've made sweaters of 100% alpaca and they grow after a while. When they're washed they do somewhat go back to their original shapes and sizes. But it's just so much easier to start out with a blend that will provide a bit of return to the original shape.

The other reason is that an alpaca/wool blend will allow a spinner to be more creative when spinning. camelid (alpacas are cousins to camels) fibers are slick and so need a lot of twist. Since this fiber is a wool blend a spinner can have a less tightly spun yarn with a bit more loft.

I wanted to have this particular blend ready for the launch of the website. My five furbs (alpacas) just don't get enough credit for all the roaming and eating they do around here. What better way than to dye up some of their lovely fiber and put it out there for the launch of the website, so long in coming!

Check out the pictures. I'm also using some new dyes, just to play around and see what kind of colors and combos I get. They are Jacquard dyes, acid dyes and so far the testing I've done is pretty promising.

Because we are launching the website on or near Valentine's Day, the color combos I've done are in the red family. So what better way to gift your sweetie than to buy them some red fiber with the promise of spinning it and making something for them??

Till next time,