I just finished knitting a beautiful afghan for my son using bulky baby alpaca. I noticed while I was knitting it that my clothes were covered in alpaca fibers.
I tried running it on an air dry cycle in the dryer to see if that would collect any loose fibers, but that didn't really help. After i gave it to my son, though he loved it, he noticed that it was shedding on his clothes. I had a bright idea. I hand washed the piece in luke warm water and a very mild soap, hoping to loosen and wash away the shedding fibers. After wrapping in towels to express as much moisture as i could, i blocked it on the floor. The beautiful alpaca yarn looked more like drowned rat! Another great idea. I put it in his dryer on air dry cycle and checked it every ten minutes. When i felt secure that all was going well, i left it for an additional 20 mintes to get the last of the moisture out. When i pulled it out...EEEK! Not only had it shrunk to half size, it had felted (which i didn't want) AND it was shedding even worse!
Two things i should add. This yarn was kind of expensive and i have more of it, enough to make another afghan. Does anybody have any suggestions on a way to minimize this unattractive feature of this yarn? Is there some kind of chemical or spray to treat this problem, or is it just something you have to live with? And if you have to live with it, will the shedding lessen with time?
Please help if you can.