Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Starting off 2015 with a Seminar!

I am determined that I will post more this year and stay up with what's going on in our alpaca life.  They arrived in February 2013 and so a major anniversary is coming up soon.  I keep telling them we will celebrate, but they just look at me like I'm crazy!  Really?  Well, maybe I am!

I post on Bev Ann's Mixed Bag, my other blog, what I'm doing in the crafty world and that includes my spinning and weaving.  But I'm going to share ore of that here to this year, because I wouldn't even be doing it if it wasn't for the boys!  When you shear once a year you get fiber and you can either store it, which I'm finding out is what many alpaca owners do, or you can use it!  You have a choice to send it off to a mill to be processed or you can do it yourself.  If I had 15 or more alpacas there would be no doubt it would be sent off, but I have three so I'm going to attempt to process it myself.

That brings me to the point of this post!  I just spent all day Saturday (January 10) at a seminar sponsored by Rancho Inca Alpacas, Texas Trails Alpacas, Rancho do Santo Domingo and Tejas Alpacas featuring Lynn Snell from Spinderella's Fiber Mill.  What a mind blowing day!  So much information but presented in a most useable way!  Much of what I heard I had heard before, but there's so much to learn about fleece that you really must hear it more than once.  The first time it sounds like you're hearing a foreign language.  The next time it's like you begin to recognize words, but still don't speak it clearly, just understand it a little more.  I have had instructions on skirting fleece, washing it and processing it.  Finally, I think i understand it after this seminar.  We, also, painted yarn (that means dying it in multiple colors), carding it (this is one thing I'm comfortable with) and wet felting.  I'm a needle felted and haven't done much wet felting, but finally it mostly made sense.

I came home Saturday night with a batt I started at the seminar.  I completed the batt and wet felted it into a piece of felt fabric the very next day!  I still have some questions, so signed up for Diana's class for a wet felted scarf (check out Feisty Fenn) at WC Mercantile this next Saturday and then I hope I'm ready to roll on my own.  It's all so much to take in and even with notes and handouts and You Tube there's still so much to learn and there's nothing like hands on!