Thursday, October 16, 2014

Alpaca Micron Grade Ranges and Best Uses

I am often asked as a skirter/sorter/grader on what is the best use for a particular micron count.  Here are the ranges I sort/grade into and their best use.   

The human eye can only see about a 2 micron difference, so of course this is a guide and the more you sort, the better you become at sorting. The key is to have batches of fiber of no more than 3 micron difference or more than 1/2 inch difference in staple length for the best yarn.   

This is my chart that I developed over the years and is pretty typical of commercial grading.   Please DO NOT copy the chart.  You may link to the post or refer to it for personal use.  

I made a cheat sheet years ago by starting with OFDA tested fiber in different microns and have that sheet with the representative fiber sitting next to me as a guide when I grade.   

Fiber that has a lot of guard hair that is markedly different than the primaries in micron is batched differently and not mixed with the pure grades.  

Grade Name AFD (Microns) Use
1 Ultra Fine (Royal Baby) less than 20 Next to skin items, gentle use
2 Super Fine (Baby) 20-22.9 Gentle use items – shawls and baby items
3 Fine 23-25.9 Most versatile grade - pretty much anything wearable
4 Medium 26-28.9 Socks, throws, outerwear and felt
5 Intermediate 29-32 Quilt Batting, duvets, outerwear and felt
6 Robust greater than 32 Batting, insulation and rugs

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Open House at the Farm Saturday October 18th, 2014 11am-4pm

Announcing our first open house of the holiday season! 
Saturday October 18th, 2014 11am - 4pm

Sebastian really hopes you will join us! 
New inventory is rolling in daily from the mill, our co-ops and of course being made by hand on the farm.   So it's time to jumpstart your holiday shopping as there are only 72 shopping days left until Christmas.

For those of you that cannot make it to Rhinebeck this weekend, why not spend the day with us? Bring your knitting/spinning/crocheting and hang out and craft in our "Spinners Circle".

Browse the new inventory:

  • Farm roving fresh from the mill
  • Hand painted and kettle dyed fiber 
  • Spinning/Felting Batts
  • Art Batts
  • Farm yarn fresh from the mill
  • Hand Spun Yarn fresh off the wheel
  • Gloves, hats, scarves, socks 
  • Dryer balls
  • Felted soap
And MUCH more!

Meet an Alpaca !  (See pics at

See the space and layout for the new store and fiber studio

See a spinning demo

Sign up for spinning or knitting classes starting in November

Learn more about raising alpacas by asking alpaca related questions, fencing, barn layout etc 

And MORE! 

  • Mention this blog post to get 10% off your purchase*
  • Can't make it on Saturday? Well pop on over to our online store and take 10% off *using coupon code OPEN10 - new inventory is being posted to the website all week - so check back often! 

*Excludes: Virtual Adoptions, Dyes, Blending Boards, Clubs and Animal Purchases