Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Got Alpaca?


I adore all the the comments that have been left about this week's WIP. Someone has given the correct answer, but I'm not telling who that person is until I finish the sock. But, I'm getting close. I'll only say that the correct answer is not that I've knit two left socks, although that comment was my favorite.
Today, you'll have to be content to listen to my spinning news.

A few weeks ago, a knitting friend of mine called me on the phone and asked if I'd be interested in several alpaca fleeces. Come again??? Apparently, her sister knew someone who knew someone who knew someone who raises alpacas. This mythical alpaca herder does not spin or even knit, but she'd been storing her fleeces for several years solely because she couldn't bring herself to throw them away. My friend and I figured, what the hell, we had nothing to lose. The bags were delivered to my friend's porch one blustery day. I stopped by that evening and picked up one of them.



After consulting with the area fiber expert, I learned a couple of things. One, the fleeces were actually not crappy. Two, what I thought were yucky, icky parts of the fleece were just dirt that could actually be washed away. Cool. In a characteristic fit of anal-rentitiveness, however, I sat down this weekend with the bag of alpaca and picked through it. The end result, a box containing a measly 12 ounces of pristine, unprocessed alpaca:



I still intend to send this off to be processed at Wooly Knob and can hardly wait to see what they do with it. Anyone have any idea how much alpaca fiber is lost during processing?. I'd like to get back enough roving to at least make a scarf.


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Running commentary on my unending quest to knit up my stash.