The Incredible Attributes of Alpaca Fibre

Why Alpaca?

Alpaca fibre has an almost infinite benefits and advantages over all other yarns;

Alpaca is hypoallergenic

Unlike sheep and goats wool, alpaca fibre does not contain lanolin (a natural oil that sheep and goats produce to improve water resistance). Plum of London’s knitwear range is made using pure (100%) alpaca ensuring that our collection is especially good for babies, children and those with sensitive skin.

Alpaca is extremely durable

Alpaca is truly phenomenal and almost indestructible: woven alpaca clothing has recently been found in almost perfect condition in Incan ruins dating back over 2,000 years. Alpaca is stronger than mohair and only second in strength to silk.

Alpaca is as soft yet finer than cashmere

Royal alpaca (which is used in our knitted clothing range) is the world’s finest alpaca yarn and boasts a micron count of less than 17. This results in alpaca knitwear that handles just as softly as cashmere but possesses so many more benefits.

Alpaca is naturally antibacterial

Thanks to no lanolin being present in alpaca fibre, pure alpaca clothing and garments repel dust mites and other organic matter which might trigger allergies.
Alpaca lacks the ‘prickle factor’ associated with wool
This risk is eradicated in our collection because we use only Royal Alpaca in our knitted range. It has been said that those who can’t even wear cashmere can wear alpaca.

Alpaca possess excellent thermal qualities

Properties which protect and insulate the alpaca at heights of up to 5500m and in temperatures varying from -28c in the winter to +27C in the summer mean that pure alpaca clothing (as used in Plum of London’s knitwear range) keeps the wearer not only cool in hot temperatures but also warm in cold conditions. Alpaca fleece is actually 3 times warmer than merino and better insulating than goose down, when required.

Alpaca is machine washable!

Some fabric experts suggest alpaca has a lower tendency to shrink than both cashmere and wool, which in part, is thanks to alpaca ffibre being water repellent. Due to alpaca lacking any lanolin content, Plum of London’s knitted garments don’t require regular cleaning, but when required, they are easy to clean and more importantly, machine washable!

Alpaca wicks away body moisture

Therefore improving the comfort of anyone wearing alpaca clothing and ensuring that the wearer maintains a constant body temperature at all times.

Alpaca is resistant to stains

Alpaca fibre is impermeable to oils which mean spills are easy to clean up before water saturates the fibre which otherwise would allow stains to develop. This therefore supports the claim that there is no better yarn in which to clothe babies and children.

Alpaca is resistant to odours

Thanks to its antibacterial and water resistant qualities, alpaca fibre successfully resists odours much better than other similar fibres.

Alpaca does not retain water

Alpaca clothing maintains its thermal qualities even when wet as tests have shown that alpaca is virtually water repellent. This also improves the cleaning and stain resistant qualities of our alpaca range.

Alpaca is not prone to ‘pill and ball’ unlike cashmere, wool and other yarns

All animal fibres contain ‘scales’ which are visible on each individual strand but the scales that are found on alpaca fibre are much shorter than on any other. This improves the wear-ability and lifespan of alpaca clothing and products as they are less likely to interlock which creates the ‘pilling’ and ‘balling’ effects.

Alpaca is lightweight and has lustrous handling

Mainly thanks to the ‘hollow’ qualities of alpaca fibre, Plum of London’s garments remain remarkably light when compared to other similar animal fibre (including merino, wool and cashmere) as well as other synthetic clothing.

Alpaca is resistant to wrinkling

Consequently, this helps alpaca garments to hold their shape and look new even after years of wear which is thanks to the natural drape, lustre and durability of alpaca clothing.

Alpaca is fire resistant

Whilst it can catch alight, alpaca will not support a flame and so will not melt or stick to the skin unlike synthetic fibres. Alpaca does not have to be treated to become flame retardant and it has been found that it is more flame retardant than even merino wool.

Alpaca is resistant to solar radiation

Which will protect your baby’s, child’s or indeed even your own skin from harmful UV rays by providing the wearer with a natural sun block.