Five Reasons To Love Your Alpaca Jumper
It’s one of the most in-demand materials on the market, but what is it about alpaca wool that makes it so special? Why has it leapt to the front of the queue when people are looking for “unique, comfortable and responsibly sourced”? Here are a few facts about alpaca fibre to help bring you up to speed, and to maybe make you think about investing in some beautifully crafted items of your own.
So yes, we are starting off with a simple one, but as the days are getting shorter and it’s getting harder to get out of bed in the morning, it’s important to know that you’ve got a nice cosy jumper waiting for you when you face the day, even if it is over a Zoom call. Alpaca fibres are warmer than, say, sheep’s wool fibres because they are completely hollow. Air enters the surface and is trapped in that hollow space where it can heat up, keeping you nice and toasty for longer.
That’s right, you don’t have to worry about skin irritation when you buy clothing made of alpaca fibres. Clothing made from alpaca hair is naturally hypoallergenic because it does not contain any lanolin. Lanolin is the waxy substance secreted by oil secreting, or sebaceous, glands of most animals with wool, typically sheep. It’s also a skin sensitizer, which is why many of us are allergic to it. But, if you buy alpaca knitwear, you don’t have to worry about any of that. What’s more, even though it does not contain lanolin, it’s still highly waterproof.
Its Impact On The Environment Is Small
Everyone should be checking their labels and putting the research into finding out where their clothing came from and how the material was sourced. The good news with alpaca clothing is that the fibre is typically farmed with great care and traditional methods that have a negligible impact on the environment.
The majority of alpaca fibre comes from Peru where farmers look after their animals. They are free grazing rather than intensely farmed, feeding on land that is not riddled with pesticides. You can find out more about the process and browse some beautiful alpaca clothing at gracielahuam.com, which uses responsible, sustainable methods to create their ethical alpaca fashion collection.
Remember how we said that most alpaca fibre comes from Peru? Well, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that it’s incredible durable. These animals live in an environment that goes from freezing cold to scorching heat over the course of the year, making it an incredibly hardy substance. It’s roughly seven times more durable than sheep’s wool, for example.
It’s Been A Favourite For Centuries
While the fashion industry may have become fascinated by alpaca fibre relatively recently, it’s been used in Peru for thousands of years. In Incan culture, the alpaca was the most important animal, so richly prized that they were the sacrifice of choice. Textiles made from their fibres was highly regarded and incredibly luxurious, and when invaders came in the 17th Century, they were taken with the fleeing locals as they headed into the mountains and thus escaped probable extinction.