Has the luxurious feel of alpaca wool captured your heart? Are you ready to make a long-term investment as a sustainable and responsible shopper? Or are you planning a trip to Peru and want to know what to expect while purchasing alpaca products there? Consider this, whoever you may be…
Alpaca woolen clothing can cost anything from $30 to $250. The quality, stitch, pattern, and size all play a role in determining the final cost of the garment. If you buy the item online or in Peru, the price will also be different. To get baby alpaca, expect to spend a premium.
What is Special About Alpaca Wool?
All of Peru’s camelid species can be found here, including the llama, guanaco and vicua. The domestication of the first two of these mammals has occurred. Guanacos and vicuas live in the wild and are known to be violent towards people.
In this order (from best to worst), the following animals’ wool is used and valued:
- The alpaca (baby alpaca is best)
Wool from the Vicua is the softest, but it also has the most expensive price tag. The Indian Express reports that vicua fiber coats can cost up to $18,595 USD!
As a result, what is the most cost-effective option for those of us who don’t have $18k burning a hole in our pockets? Consider the variety of wools available.
- Wool from guanacos is quite expensive, but not as expensive as wool from vicuas. Due to the declining population of these animals in the wild, they are also exceedingly hard to come by. Because they were ceaselessly pursued, guanaco populations were decimated.
- Llama fiber is widely available, although their topcoat is coarser than that of any other camelids.. Because of this, the wool is best suited for manufacturing blankets and throws rather than garments.
- Due to its softness and affordability, alpaca wool is an excellent material for garments. In order to get the best alpaca wool, you need to start with a baby alpaca. It’s perfect for sweaters because of its softer texture.
Baby Alpaca Products
Many people believe that shaving a newborn alpaca is the only way to get baby alpaca fleece. It’s true that baby alpaca is actually a type of alpaca fleece. Baby alpaca wool is defined as having a micron count ranging from 21.5 to 23 microns.
Animals’ fiber diameter grows with age, thus even if it doesn’t have to originate from one, it’s more likely that the animal was young when sheered if using baby alpaca wool.
8 Top Tips for Purchasing Alpaca Sweaters in Peru
1. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is…
You won’t be able to breathe when you visit any Peruvian market because of the quantity of vendors claiming to be selling alpaca products at a bargain price.
However, the market is flooded with counterfeits. As long as the merchant is prepared to sell the item to you at 50 soles, it seems quite improbable that the goods is of the highest quality.
I didn’t care so much about whether or not it was made of alpaca wool because I wanted a classic Peruvian sweater. (I don’t know what to say.) In short, I’m a spendthrift.) That’s why I was able to get my jumper for just $16USD. In common with most other low-cost clothes on the market, it’s made of a blend of synthetic materials with little to no alpaca wool in it. It’s also not composed of baby alpaca wool, like most of the inexpensive apparel on the market!
2. 100% baby alpaca is hard to come by on markets
The best alpaca wool may usually be found in high-end stores. Unless you’re willing to pay a premium, you won’t be able to find it at a store.
Be very wary of market stalls claiming to sell sweaters that are 100% baby alpaca. Real baby alpaca wool costs around half as much as regular alpaca garments to obtain as a substitute.
3. Alpaca wool shouldn’t be very itchy
The degree to which wool irritates your skin depends on its grade. You’ll need a baby alpaca sweater if you want something that’s nearly itch-free. Don’t worry if you can’t afford a baby alpaca. The alpaca wool sold on Peruvian markets should also not be especially scratchy on average.
It is important to remember that how much your skin itches, depends on how sensitive you are. However, a good rule is that if the product that you are trying on makes your skin itch a lot, it is probably a very low blend of alpaca, or more likely, not alpaca at all.
4. Baby alpaca is always more expensive
You must keep in mind that your skin’s sensitivity determines how badly it will itch. But if the product you are trying on causes your skin to itch a lot, it is most likely not alpaca at all, or at least has a very low alpaca content.
5. Alpaca wool is cold to the touch
Even when wet, alpaca wool is an excellent insulator. Because of this, it has long been a popular choice among Andean people. As a result, it will have a cashmere-like feel and feel cold when it’s brushed.
Alpaca wool is best experienced by visiting high-end boutiques and trying it on. The alpaca products in the stores can be stroked to their heart’s content. You’ll be able to tell the difference between a genuine product and a counterfeit one lot easier if you know what it feels like.
6. The sweater should feel heavy
As an additional way to gauge the quality of alpaca wool, pick it up and feel its weight. The density of alpaca fibers is substantially higher than that of acrylic or wool. The heavier a Peruvian alpaca sweater feels, the more likely the garment is to be made of alpaca fibers.
7. Machine vs. handmade
Many of the Peruvian jumpers you’ll see are extremely similar in design. This is due to the fact that they are mass-produced in factories. Compared to handcrafted items, these will be a lot less expensive.
A poncho can take up to three weeks to weave if you follow the traditional methods used by indigenous communities. Handmade alpaca apparel is more valuable than mass-produced alpaca clothing, even if both employ alpaca fibres.
8. Always haggle
Don’t let yourself be intimidated by the prospect of haggling over the purchase price. In order to make it easier for you to bargain, these vendors give you their first price at the outset.
You will be in a better position to negotiate a fair price if you utilize the information in this article to evaluate the quality of the item you are purchasing. Negotiate the price down low if you’re interested in purchasing a mass-produced alpaca blend, for example.
A dealer will refuse to lower their price if you’re bartering for something of superior quality. They won’t be able to sell it for less than it’s worth if it’s created from real baby alpaca and is handcrafted.
Avoid driving a hard deal, as you would with any form of negotiation. Remember that even if you’re looking for a great price, these people still have to earn a life.
Head to one of the more costly shops (recommendations at the bottom) if you’re seeking for something authentic and are still concerned about buying a fake. However, the cost will be worth it if only for the peace of mind.
What does an alpaca woolen garment cost?
The following are possible influences on the pricing of alpaca wool products:
- Peru vs. the Internet
- Wool from alpacas
- It’s alpaca vs. vicua in a head-to-head comparison.
- Machine-created or handcrafted?
- Garments, Knitted or Woven
You can see how much you might anticipate to pay for each item below. Peruvian high-end and internet establishments have been included in the comparisons. Due to the difficulty of providing an accurate pricing estimate, I have excluded marketplaces and other local venues in Peru and elsewhere.
First, let’s have a look at the real prices of alpaca woolen goods before looking into the aspects that affect their cost.
Type of Peruvian Garment
110-150 dollars for sweaters 100-250 dollars
Scarf 80 in. x 13 ins.
(200cm x 35cm) is the area
A shawl that measures 80 inches by 40 inches.
What Should an Alpaca Woolen Sweater Cost?
A sweater is one of the most essential pieces in any woman’s wardrobe. Winter, spring, summer, fall, and winter are all good times to wear sweaters. This investment will provide you the peace of mind that you’ll always have something to wear in any weather or situation.
Although alpaca wool sweaters are pricey, they are extremely durable and, with proper care, may last for generations.
If you want to keep things easy, I’m going to assume that the sweater has a simple V-neck and is made of alpaca wool, which is 100 percent pure.
Peru has a wider selection, which accounts for the price disparity. The pricing range for a sweater is much wider because it is such a common garment with so many variations.
What Should an Alpaca Woolen Scarf Cost?
Alpaca scarves are a great way to get your feet wet in the alpaca world. With a wide range of styles and sizes, they’re both practical and adaptable.
A scarf is assumed to be long, but not particularly wide, in order to keep this chart as easy as possible. To keep you warm, you simply wrap it around your neck once and wear it with a jacket. The measurements are merely approximations.
For one thing, the scarves available in Peru are much more diverse than those available in online stores. If you have a more particular search in mind, your results may differ from those of my own, so proceed with caution.
Scarf 80 in. x 13 ins.
What Should an Alpaca Woolen Shawl Cost?
Shawls are more versatile than scarves because of their larger size and wider variety of ways they can be worn. In addition to protecting your neck and throat from the cold, a scarf can also be used as a fashion accessory.
The fiber texture of alpaca wool makes it ideal for draping because of its inherently loose and informal appearance. As a result, alpaca wool is ideal for evenings out with friends.
Shawls exist in a wide range of patterns, sizes, models, and processes.
Weaving and knitting are both viable options. You should expect to pay a greater price in Peru because of the variety of designs, colors, and combinations of those. Expect to pay a little more if you’re looking for something truly exceptional and unusual.
An 80-inch-by-40-inch shawl
What Should an Alpaca Woolen Ruana Cost?
Even if you’ve never heard of it, an alpaca ruana is one of the most typical uses for alpaca wool. Ruanas are poncho-like wraps, like blankets, with a better-fitting pattern.
There are a variety of ways to wear a ruana, including wearing it as a coat, sweater, or blanket on the couch. It’s multipurpose, warm, and wonderfully supple and cushy.
A ruana may appear pricey at first, but it’s an investment that will pay off handsomely in the long run.
What Should an Alpaca Woolen Hat Cost?
Hats for all! When it comes to headgear, there is a wide range of choices. Peru’s offerings are unquestionably more upscale than anything you’ll find anywhere, even on the internet.
Hats in Peru, and in particular in Cusco, are known as Chullos (Spanish for “chullo”). Hats that have been hand-knitted and decorated with lovely designs and colors are customary. The pom-poms on top and the side patches that cover the ears complete the look. Because they require a lot more work to make, they are more expensive, and it is very likely that they can only be found in Peru.
Regular beanie hats are less expensive and considerably more readily available online.
What Should an Alpaca Woolen Blanket Cost?
Alpaca wool blankets and wraps will transform any couch into a cozy haven. There is a wide range of blankets available, from sophisticated travel blankets to simple throws, both online and in local stores.
Rugs made of alpaca wool might be hard to come by in Peru. It is possible to cut the price of blankets by selling them outside of Peru. Lower prices are a result of increased demand. Having throws and blankets neatly coiled up next to your couch or chair seems to be a Western tradition. In Peru, there is no such thing as a compulsion to do so.
Why Do Alpaca Wool Prices Vary?
The opportunity to shop for alpaca woolen clothes in Peru is not available to everyone. If you buy an alpaca woolen item closer to the source, you might expect to pay less. To save money while traveling, it’s a good idea to buy alpaca wool in Peru.
Alpaca wool has long been prized by the Andean peoples of Peru, the alpaca’s native habitat. Peru has some of the most exquisite and high-quality alpaca wool products in the world.
1. Prices at Local Markets
You may shop for alpacas at local or tourist markets in Peru. The cities of Lima, Cusco, Arequipa, Puno, and the Sacred Valley have a wide variety of lodging alternatives.. Don’t forget to brush up on your alpaca wool identification skills.
Prices for mixed content will be low in the local markets. About $15 for a sweater and $5 for caps and mittens, for starters. To receive the best deal, you may have to negotiate.
2. Prices at Certified Shops
In high-end boutiques like Kuna and Sol, you can be certain that the price and content listed on a product’s label are accurate. You’ll find these shops all around Peru, including in the airports. You’ll spend more, but you won’t have to worry about getting ripped off when buying 100% alpaca wool, baby alpaca, or even vicua.
3. Prices from Local Communities
Visiting indigenous communities is another alternative that is more beneficial. Chinchero is renowned for its textiles, but it also carries genuine works of art. Keep in mind, though, that style may be considerably more outlandish than what you are willing to wear.
4. Prices in Online Shops
Another alternative is to buy alpaca wool online. Depending on how well you research, you may find pricing that are comparable to those in Peru, but don’t forget to factor in shipping, taxes, and currency conversion rates!
The cost of shipping wool or clothing from South America to another country will increase the price if you find an item that is more expensive than you expected it to be in Peru!
How Does the Wool Content Change the Price of Alpaca Wool?
The price of an alpaca woolen item is heavily influenced by the amount of alpaca wool that makes up that item. If at all possible, I’d suggest going with 100% (baby) alpaca wool. Merino, cotton, and linen are all natural fibers that can be used to make high-quality blends.
Alpaca wool is worth its weight in gold because of its high quality, and synthetic mixtures will detract from that quality.
If you haven’t read my post about alpaca wool yet, do it now!
But if you’re an unemployed traveller who needs keepsakes or a replacement for a stinky sweatshirt, you can surely go for the cheaper options. To cut costs, synthetics are incorporated. Synthetic fabrics also have the advantage of making a garment washable and lighter in weight.
What Are the Different Prices for Alpaca, Baby Alpaca and Vicuña?
Alpaca wool, baby alpaca wool, and even vicua wool fall into distinct price ranges.
- Wool made from alpacas is both rare and affordable.
- Baby alpaca wool costs around half as much as alpaca wool. Expect to pay at least $90 for a baby alpaca scarf if you can buy a small 100% alpaca woolen scarf for $60.
- Another member of the camelid family, the vicua, is incredibly rare and much sought for. A vicua woolen item’s price can simply be increased by an additional two digits. It isn’t out of the question to see a little scarf selling on eBay for $4,000. It’s true.
What Is More Expensive, Handmade or Machine-made Garments?
The process used to make alpaca wool has a significant impact on its retail price. The majority of clothing is created by a machine, making them less expensive.
It’s easy to tell if an item is handcrafted or machine-made by looking at the inside (or back) of the product. You may tell whether an item is handcrafted if the knots are irregular and not particularly uniform. The front and rear of a machine-made item will be identical.
When it comes to home machines, there is a big difference from when it comes to equipment that are utilized in large-scale manufacturing.
In contrast to the latter, the former requires a significant amount of handwork that can only be given by a “genuine” human knitter. In order to use a machine for at-home knitting, the knitter must manually put on each stitch, examine the work, and finish the task manually.
It’s meaningless to argue over whether method is superior, but it’s worth noting that the number of people who knit by hand is dwindling, in part because the time and effort required to produce a hand-knitted item is typically undervalued. There is no longer any competition for hand-knitters because machine knitting has reduced the amount of time and effort required to produce something.
What Is More Expensive, Woven or Knitted Garments?
It’s highly doubtful that machines will ever be able to take the position of skilled weavers, at least not in Peru. This is a highly sought-after skill in places like Chinchero. From skirts to bags to scarves to table runners, you’ll find a wide variety of lovely woven clothes.
As a result, the cost of woven and knitted clothing will be comparable. Woven garments are more expensive because they need more time and effort to make, but knitted garments are more expensive because they utilize more wool.
When shopping for alpaca wool, keep these two points in mind. Additionally, the price will be affected by the manner of delivery (machine or manual).
One thread is usually used for weaving, which is looped and interlocked before continuing on. A criss-cross pattern of threads over and under is used in weaving, but knitting does not have any edges. Because it is not knitted, the edges are more prone to unraveling. In final products, woven fabric will be securely attached and finished correctly.
Is it worth to pay for Fair-trade?
Paying for fair-trade products is always a good investment. Fair-trade alpaca woolen items are worth their weight in gold. There are many projects and people who can profit from fair prices because alpaca wool comes from the Andes. This means that fair salaries, good working conditions, and equitable treatment may be achieved. You can search for certifications, or you can do your own research about the organization.
The cost of an alpaca woolen scarf
If you’ve never worn alpaca before, a scarf is a great way to get a feel for the fabric’s softness and warmth. With a wide range of colors and shapes, the scarf is a flexible item that can be worn in a variety of ways. 180 cm x 30 cm is the standard size of a normal scarf. The average cost of a woolen scarf on Amazon is $80. The dimensions of our scarves are 200 cm x 30 cm.
The cost of an alpaca woolen shawl
The shawl is considered a larger accessory in the fashion business than the scarf.. It can be worn in a variety of ways as well. Its primary use is to keep the wearer’s neck and throat warm, but it can also be used as a fashion accessory. Because of the wavy structure of the fibers, this outfit has a relaxed vibe.
Alpaca wool is an excellent material for a shawl that will last for many years. Shawls, like scarves, come in a variety of styles, sizes, and colors. The standard size of a shawl is 180 cm by 60 cm. Online, a woolen shawl is selling for an average of $90. Sizes for our shawls range from 200cm to 30cm.
The cost of alpaca woolen cushion covers
Alpaca cushion covers aren’t popular since people don’t realize what they’re good for. Because of the unusual structure of the material, these cushion coverings are a significant step up from standard cotton or linen. You can rest your head on an alpaca cushion cover and feel both coolness and warmth on hot and cold days, respectively.
Alpaca cushion coverings are a terrific way to include more natural fibers into your home’s decor. The standard size of the cushion coverings is 40 cm x 40 cm. The average price for this sort of woolen cushion cover on Amazon is $ 80.
The cost of alpaca woolen blanket
You can’t go wrong with alpaca wool blankets and throws for your couch. Regular household blankets, travel blankets, and throws are all examples of this type of goods. In Peru, blankets are a rare commodity, which could lead to a stronger demand for them. This is a standard 180 cm × 130 cm alpaca blanket for one person. Woolen blankets typically cost around $100 on Amazon. A typical size for one of our blankets is 200 centimeters by 30 centimeters.
There are numerous ways to use an alpaca wool blanket or throw in your house, making it a great investment. In the cooler months of spring and fall, you may wrap yourself up in it while relaxing on your patio to stay toasty. Silkeborg has the finest prices and selection.
If you need assistance, Silkeborg Uldspinderi is here to provide it. You’ll be able to choose from a wide range of high-quality options. Contact us if you’d like to purchase alpaca scarves, shawls, pillows or throws, and we’ll do our best to help.