Basket of Suri Alpaca
Thrilled for the invite to the annual alpaca shearing day, out at Sweet Clover Alpaca, I could barely contain my excitement. This year, Deb invited 5 alpaca farms to bring in their alpaca for the spring shearing. There was a whole lot of shearing going on and a tremendous amount of adorable, undeniable cuteness.
Also, the opportunity to meet new cuties like Gale Warning was priceless. She was born 2 weeks before the shearing day, during a very stormy evening. She is awfully sweet and follows Deb, the owner of Sweet Clover Alpaca, around everywhere she goes.
It was wonderful to meet so many alpaca farmers too! The passion for their animals is palpable.
Along with the alpacas, there was one llama. Llamas need haircuts too! He was a beast in size compared to the alpaca. The poor guy was very upset though. He was so hard to get into the laying down position required for shearing and once he was there, he screamed. Like seriously screamed. Screams that would have made Alfred Hitchcock proud. He was definitely a drama llama.I adore watching how the alpaca greet each other after being sheared. When a new alpaca comes back, all the alpaca gather around the freshly sheared one. It’s like they are checking out the new do and either approving or humming out laughter at how skinny they look and other inside alpaca jokes. It only lasts a moment but it’s interesting to watch the gathering. Above is a sheared alpaca next to one that’s still waiting her turn.Last year I was able to buy the very first cria (baby alpaca) fleece from Painted Lady. This year, I am hoping to get her second year fleece as well. Here she is above just before shearing. On the right, you see the experts from Top Knot Shearing, gently shearing off her beautiful fiber.
Although it looks a bit uncomfortable, shearing the fiber off the alpaca is a total necessity. Think about the hot summer days ahead. These poor babies would die of heat exhaustion without the spring shearing. They need their coats in the winter, but come summer, they are happy to have them gone.
Here’s Painted Lady’s blanket from this year’s shearing. It’s okay to drool. I hope to have some yarn made from this to share with you soon. Giddy being outside on such a gorgeous day, I adored observing each alpaca’s individuality. Plus the fiber…oh the fiber!!! Delicious. I wanted to roll around in it. I took a lot of pictures (probably too many, but who can resist those faces???) and will share more in future posts.
I’m super appreciative to Deb, at Sweet Clover Alpaca, for letting me in on this annual experience. Just wait, lots of new alpaca yarn is on the way!
On a side note, special thanks to Courtney Spradlin. She came out from the paper, took beautiful photographs, and wrote up the lovely story posted in the paper. Her journalistic adventure is taking her outside of Arkansas. I’m going to miss seeing her around all our local events and wish her the very best of luck in all her future endeavors. ♥
Our Big Show this summer was in the beautiful country setting of Vermont. The Twisted Purl was honored to be among the talented Artists and Crafters at the Shelburne Museum Arts & Crafts Festival. We saw some absolutely amazing sights while in Vermont.
The above picture is my absolute favorite. We went out to Grand Isle to visit & meet some crafty friends and saw this on the way home. This picture was taken through the car window in between two cars flying past.
We drove in from Arkansas, just me and my youngest two boys. By the time we saw this sign, the boys and I ran out of the car and took pictures (all while jumping up and down). I’m sure we were quite the sight to see. It was so good to be back in Vermont!
My family lives in a farm house that was built in 1786. Talk about old! It is gorgeous. The property is surrounded by a dairy farm, so the cows came and visited us everyday.
The cows weren’t the only fun animals we saw. We also visited a gorgeous Alpaca Farm in Brandon. The Maple View Alpaca Farm & Vermont Fiber Mill. They had an open house and it was amazing to see the BIG machines that do what I do with all my little equipment.
The Art Show was a blast and I really do have a ton more to share but I have to get to work on filling your orders. Will post more tomorrow!
CLIMBING ROSE GARDEN CLICK HERE TO BUY
Handspun Yarn 2 Ply Thread Spun then plied with alpaca
65 yards apx
6 3/4 ounces
Fiber: Merino Wool, Silk, Glitter, Fluff & Stuff, Plied with Hand Painted Alpaca
Wraps Per Inch: 6
Yarn Weight: #6 Super Bulky
Gauge Per Inch: 1.5-3
Recommended Needles: 11+ Hook: M+(only 1 available)
Hand Painted Yarn 250 yards
Yarn Weight: #1 Finger Super Fine
Gauge Per Inch: 6.75-8
Recommended Needles: 1-3 Hook: B, C, D
(4 skeins available)