About Thistledown 

We are Molly, Steph and Phillipa Gardner and together we own and operate Thistledown. We run our farm with organic principles in mind using suri alpaca, boer goats and lowline angus/ dexter cattle to achieve this.

We purchased our first four alpacas in 2002 and with this the addiction began! It was suri that stole our hearts— their sheer elegance, exquisite fibre and as we discovered, so delightfully easy to farm. 

We developed a stong desire to breed black and coloured suri with improved fleece qualities to produce a luxurious and high performing rare natural fibre. This required a good breeding programme selecting for lustre, uniformity of micron, density and luxurious handle. We introduced genetics from America, Peru and Australia. 

Thistledown and Surico Alpaca are at the forefront of the emerging suri fibre industry in Australasia. We were part of the succesful first trial to have 100% suri processed and made into luxurious fabric and continue to be involved in suri processing research . We have had support over the years from the NZ government funded Sustainable Farming Fund (Rumplestilskin). We purchase high quality suri fibre in NZ and Australia. Molly is an experienced and qualified AANZ  and AAA judge and shares her passion for suri and suri fibre as a regular international speaker, and through running hands on workshops and seminars.

Why Work with Us?

We are passionate about breeding quality black and coloured suri and are committed to seeing the rare suri fibre take its place in the luxury fibre market. We offer solid performing bloodlines (show and fleece) and excellent after sales support to help you achieve your goals. 

Thank You!

We really appreciate you taking the time to get to know us. To talk further about how we can work together, get in touch on 03 3047448 or 027 347 8008 or via e-mail on

We look forward to talking hearing from you!

Molly Steph and Phillipa.