Can you wash alpaca wool in a washing machine?
Is washing alpaca wool in a washing machine possible or not? We get this question very often. Like many answers, it depends.
If your garment is 100 % pure alpaca wool, hand-washing is the gentlest and safest method of cleaning an Alpaca garment.
If your garment is a blend of alpaca wool and acrylic or cotton, it is perfectly safe to use the washing machine. This is why we use a 70 % alpaca wool - 30 % acrylic blend with our alpaca blankets. We recommend using cold water and a gentle cycle for optimal care. For drying, the best method is to lay the garment flat to air dry.
Follow these four simple steps to hand-wash your alpaca blanket
- Gently wash in warm water with a mild soap. Rinse in water at the same temperature. Depending on the size of the garment, you can use a sink or a tub.
- Gently press excess water from garment without twisting
- Lay the wet garment on a dry towel and roll it up in the towel to remove excess water.
- Lay the garment flat to air dry
Does alpaca wool shrink when washed?
The possibility of shrinkage depends on the percentage of alpaca wool and the method of confection. A 100 % alpaca wool garment is more likely to shrink if washed in the machine with hot water or put in the dryer. A blended mix of alpaca wool and acrylic for example normally won’t shrink.
You can note that alpaca wool is less likely to shrink as much as sheep wool. However, If your garment is loosely knitted or woven, it is more likely to shrink a bit in the drying process, it is how wool works. If your garment is more tightly knitted or woven, it should maintain its original form.
How do you fix a shrunken alpaca blanket?
Some tricks to fix a shrunken alpaca blanket or sweater would be to place it in the washing machine with some conditioner. This will help the wool fibers to become more flexible. When the blanket is wet you can gently stretch it out.
You can also try to soak the blanket in warm water for an hour to help the fibers to relax.
How do I dry an alpaca blanket?
The optimal way to dry an alpaca blanket is to lay it flat and let it air dry. For a big blanket, a good trick is to lay it on a dining table. Please avoid the use of the dryer as it will ruin your alpaca blanket.
How long does alpaca wool last when it’s well taken care of?
Alpaca wool can last many years when well treated. When wool fibers become loose over time, which is a normal process, they may form little balls or pills. We suggest you invest in a de-pill comb to remove them when necessary and keep your garment in good shape for a long time.
Why do we use alpaca wool and acrylic blend at Art Andina ?
At Art Andina, we have chosen to create our optimal blend of 70 % alpaca wool and 30 % acrylic for all our blankets and scarves.
In our experience, this blend brings out the best of both worlds. It ensures the exquisite softness of alpaca wool as well as its warmth and thermo-regulating properties. In addition, acrylic makes our products more resistant for everyday and outdoor use. It also facilitates care. All of our products can easily go to the washing machine without being hand-washed.