Oil Springs, Ontario, Canada
My parents and I drove through the fog and melting snow to visit Brier Run Alpaca Farm this morning.
The owners, Heather Blanchard and Norris McAuslan, opened the store for us and then gave us a tour of the processing facilities.
The store includes many kinds of yarn and roving, most of them made from a single alpaca and named after that animal (i.e. McDermot, Glen Fiddich, Tukie). Some are blended with silk for extra softness. Heather and Norris currently sell hand-knit products on their website, but soon they’ll be opening an online store for their yarn as well.
They also sell roving and raw fibre for spinning. It was fun to manhandle the bumps to compare the color and softness of each alpaca.
In the processing plant, their friendly cat showed us this wonderfully soft roving from one of the cria (baby alpacas)—it felt like air.
Later this will be spun into yarn in their machines:
They also spin lower-grade alpaca fibres around a twine core to make yarn that will be woven into rugs:
Or batting for alpaca duvets:
The alpacas were hiding out from the rain and mud, so we only got to see a few of the 75 or so that live on their farm:
Thanks to Heather and Norris for the tour! I can’t wait to get some of this yarn on my needles. Oh, and did I mention that I really really really want an alpaca of my own??? Look how cute they are!!!