Charlene Peck Braun                                   Clermont, FL


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Llama Fiber Info

Collecting Fiber

Almost all llama fiber is useable, whether it is coarse for rugs, guard hair used for rope or fly tying, or fine for next-to-the-skin garments. We use a variety of methods to collect the fiber, some more time-consuming than others.

All the llamas are sheared or clipped in April and those with heavy wool are sheared again in August. This allows time for the wool to grow out enough for the fairly mild winter. I prefer to shear in a small pen where the llama can walk around or eat while Iím working. This is less stressful on both of us.

  • I like the not-smooth look of all over hand shearing. This is done on the llamas that arenít used to the noise of electric clippers. Hand shears also make noise and if the llama is too nervous, I just use scissors.
  • Clipping is fast and the way to get a smooth look, but it does take practice to avoid second cuts of fiber.
  • Brushing is time-consuming but yields a finer, softer fiber because no guard hair is collected. If itís carefully done this is a good way to bond with your critter, and it helps keep them from rubbing on the fences.
  • Walk the pastures and pick up shed fiber. Pull out the debris before storing it. If thereís too much debris in the wool, I leave it for the birds.

Because I use the collected fiber for spinning, I flick open the fiber with a comb to remove any debris and pull out the guard hair. This is time-consuming but the resulting fiber is ready to spin or card, depending on the project. Then the fiber is stored in paper bags for later use.

For more information on llama fiber, click on this link:

ILR Fiber Brochure #9

 

© Charlene Peck Braun 2011