Wednesday, November 26, 2008

haircut day and some weaving

When is a suri not a suri - when it's shorn this close, the fibre left shines like velvet.
A morning spent at Allan and Jackie Grant's alpaca farm and assisted (bagging fibre and sweeping) whilst 9 alpacas got their annual haircuts. One very pregnant suri seemed very glad to shed her heavy hot coat.
The tui (adolescent) alpaca in the photo below was a bit fearful this being her first shearing experience but she was very good really.This is what is on my loom at home, the yarn is handspun, would have liked it to be finer, natural coloured huacaya alpaca being woven in a swedish lace pattern.Being woven into a baby blanket.
Moral of this weaving is keep your loom in good order. One by one the string tying the sticks to the front of the apron broke and had to be replaced. Wish I'd done them before tying the warp on.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Nearly the weekend.

Playtime on the loom. This little four shaft loom lives at the Textile co-operative shop and when I have time it's nice to weave something , this time just for fun. I dug out some of the 4ply wool yarn I'd dyed for the shop and put it in both the warp and weft, different colours, and wove plain weave, changing colour and even incorporating textured yarns at random, just enjoying the weaving process. The fabric is now off the loom and after I've washed it I'll see what it wants to be.
I can't keep up with the carding, as the batts go into the shop they just disappear. I was hoping to get to spin some myself. They do require a lot of work as the raw fibres get washed, dyed, carded in their individual colours before recarding into multicoloured blends. The best bit is mixing the finished colours together at the end.
There are more tourists about now in Oamaru, hope the weather warms up soon, it's been really cold today and a frost is predicted for the early hours tomorrow. Our neighbour will be out early with his helicopter protecting the vineyards from frost. The grapes are well on in Otago and elsewhere so frost warnings this late into spring are not taken lightly.
Anyway I'd better go and soak some more fleece for dyeing.