Llovely Llocal Llamas!
Spring break this week, so I had a chance to make a quick trip down the road to show them the llamas at Shenandoah Homeplace Suri Llamas in Luray, Virginia. For the last year, I’ve been helping the owner of this lovely and historic homestead, retired Airforce General Chet Taylor, with marketing fiber and yarn from his pedigreed animals. I enjoyed getting out to see his farm (and the cleanest, neatest most organized barn you can imagine). The children got a chance to get up close and personal to the animals, who were very gentle and even a bit shy. My youngest first called them camels, and he wasn’t far off, as llamas, alpacas and camels are all related (in the camelid family). The highlight for them, though, may a have playing in the hayloft!
The first batch of llama fleece was sent off to a small mill for processing into five natural undyed shades of lovely, dehaired luxury yarn shown in these pictures. Some was made into roving which I have both spun by hand and sold to other spinners. While more fiber is heading to the mill and roving is currently sold out, there are still skeins of the yarn in three of the colors available, and on sale in my shop http://www.wildhare.etsy.com. Just look in the Shenandoah Llama section ( it may be several months before the new batch is back from the mill).
Llama is lustrous and silky with lots of drape, which makes it great for lace knitting, scarves and shawls. The natural colors also go well together in fair-isle designs. And it’s so meaningful to work with fiber from small farms where you know the animals are well tended and free to enjoy green pastures like those at Shenandoah Homeplace Suri Llamas.
The lovely fiber is only a small part of it for dedicated llama breeders. To read more about these pedigreed animals and the farm on which they live (and which is in the National Registry of Historic Places), please visit their web site: http://web.me.com/shenhomeplacellamas/Shenandoah_Homeplace_Suri_Llamas/Welcome.html