- Raw material selection
The alpaca and llama breeders (who are based in different zones of the Bolivian Highlands) bring their varying classes of fibre to out warehouses in El Alto.
- Fibre sorting
The alpaca and llama fleeces are first graded and then sorted for fineness and colour. This operation is carried out by ladies whose skills of selection have been handed down from generation to generation.
The wool (fibre) scouring operation has the objective of removing the natural grease and any extraneous dust that the fleeces collect.
The wool scouring is carried out on the a large industrial machine containing 5 separate washing bowls using clean warn water and bio-degradable. Detergent leaving the fibre clean and containing no more then 0.5% of it’s natural lanolin.
- Carding and Combing.
The carding process removes a percentage of the vegetable matter and coarse hair and presents the raw material in a continuous sliver. The material is a then combed on rectilinear combs where the short fibres and the remaining vegetable matter is removed. The resultant sliver is then passed through a series of gilling operations designed to align the fibres and make the sliver more regular. Designed to align the individual fibres and make the sliver more regular in preparation for the spinning operation.
- Yearn Processing.
The final product of the carding and combing operation universally know as ball tops are passed through a further series of gilling passages designed to reduce the weight of the sliver and present it in a desirable state for the yarn spinning process. This is done on the spinning frames where the sliver is reduced to its required thickness and twisted to give the yarn strength and durability.
- The dyeing process.
Though alpaca and llama fibre comes in a rich palette of natural shades, The yarn dyeing is carried out in a pressurized vessel using Eco-friendly dyestuffs which are approved for garment manufacture.