Experience the joy of spinning alpaca. Luxuriously soft, long, and available in a wide range of beautiful natural colors, discover why spinners love alpaca fiber. It is a long fiber with no crimp, so it doesn’t stretch and bounce the way wool does. Sheep’s wool also contains a lot of lanolin (grease) and most spinners like to scour the wool to remove excess lanolin before they spin it. Alpaca doesn’t have the same grease content, so it can be spun raw (or unwashed) pretty easily.
There are two basic breeds of alpacas: Huacaya and Suri. The rich deep colors and crimpy waves of Huacaya alpaca have made it very popular among spinners. The slender, angular Suri, with a topknot over its eyes, has slick, lustrous fiber that hangs in ringlets called roping. You’ll love learning how to spin this unique fiber in this free instructional and very informative guide.
In this free comprehensive guide to the different types of alpaca and their fiber, Kaye Collins covers the unique properties of alpaca fiber from various breeds, and how to spin it to best advantage.
Yarn from Huacaya Alpaca
Spinning Alpaca for Knitting: Huacaya Alpaca by Kaye Collins
Kaye has learned more about alpaca than can be covered in a single article. So she begins with an overview and then focus on spinning Huacaya fiber—the “woolier” type of alpaca—to make knitting yarns. Learn about preparation techniques for the Huacaya breed and things to be aware of when choosing your alpaca fleece.
How to Spin Suri Alpaca
Spinning Suri Alpaca Instruction by Kaye Collins
Transform that gorgeous rare Suri fiber into beautiful alpaca yarn. This fiber is fine and soft like cashmere with the sheen and smoothness of silk. Suri also has the added benefit of a long staple length. Once Suri fiber is well prepared, it spins so easily you can forget your troubles, relax, and spin, spin, spin. Get started by learning where to find it, how to prepare and wash it, and to properly spin it.
Working with Alpaca Fleece
Spinning the Yarn of a Newcomer by Kaye Collins
With so many new and fantastic spinning fibers on the market (Soy Silk, bamboo, ingeo) it is hard to believe there could possibly be more—but it’s true. Pacovicuña is the newest fiber-producing camelid in North America. Paco-vicuña, blends the characteristics of alpaca and vicuña fiber that will remind you of spinning cashmere.
Create Beautiful Yarn from Alpaca
South America’s Wild Ones, Vicuña and Guanaco by Kaye Collins
Learn about these two wild South American breeds and the several differences between the two species. Kaye Collins shares her experience in Lima, Peru and the important things she learned about these two breeds, their fiber qualities, spinning their fiber, and the gorgeous project she made from her handspun alpaca fiber.
This alpaca fiber guide is an essential resource.
Along with your free tutorial, you will also receive a free membership to our online Spinning Daily community!