Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Tempting Tuesday - Renaissance

One of the first Alpacas I bought was a male names Renaissance aka Renny who has a very distinct look of having a white tuft of hair above his eyes on his topknot plus a bottom lip that hangs giving him a bucktooth look.  Renny doesn't have the typical Suri look of greasy looking pencil locks instead he has a lofty look.  He was a Peruvian cria at side from an imported dam.  His straight locks don't give you the impression that his fleece is nice...but it is.

Renny's fiber is a Grade 4 which is 26-28.9 micron in diameter. It's not a fine fleece nor is it course.  Typically I would turn his fleece into a sock blend but this year I took his fleece (along with last year's) and I created a beautiful yarn.  It's a blend of 70% Suri and 30% Merino spun into a nice DK weight  2ply yarn. 
 As usual my camera did not capture the color. Argh! Photographer, I am not.
It's a very unique color not quite brown not quite rust and I am having a hard time deciding what to make out of it.  Right now I am in hat mode so everything I spin or have the mill spin says, "Hat!" but this blend would be beautiful in various other projects too.

Now to share a little bit about Renny.  When I first met him, I wasn't sure if I liked him.  He was very standoffish and didn't seem friendly unlike his nephew, Kaboom, who I ended up buying.  Now the deal with Alpacas is that they are herd animals so you need to have more than one.  I ended up getting Renny and he freaked me out.  Of the first four boys I bought, he was the oldest and the grumpiest.  He didn't want me to touch him.  Goodness, how did I find this unfriendly Alpaca?  It didn't make sense because everytime I was in the barn or the pasture he was watching me attentively and didn't seem stressed or frightened until I came near him.

Well, I went all Marty McGee on him and I followed the camelid care instructions in the Marty McGee book, Camelidynamics.  I read that book cover to cover and back again while I was flying to and from Disney so that we I got back home to the farm I could become the Alpaca Whisperer.  Every day I would go out and work with him in a catch panelled area where I would approach him and hold him without doing anything except speak softly then rub his ears.  After that I would walk away.  Eventually it was time for shots or toenail trimming and he would let me come up and do my business without bolting.  Mind you, he didn't make it easy for me to get him into the catch pen but once I did, he would work with me.  If you are going to own Alpacas, Marty's book is a very important one for you to read and use as a reference.

Renny is a very curious fellow always watching what goes on in the pasture and out of it.  He is the one who sounds the alarm call when perceived danger approaches and he is the one you notice when you visit the boys pen but don't expect him to take a treat from your hand because he has NEVER done so.
Renny and Kaboom
That's my Renny.  He is my oldest Alpaca and he likes to keep the other males in line.  I enjoy him completely and am finally happy, after two years, to have created a product out of his fiber.  I will have the yarn created from his fleece available at Fiber Fest this weekend.  It won't appear on my Etsy site until after the next two festivals so if you are interested then send me a message.  As usual, it's a very hard choice for me to sell it instead of keeping the yarn all to myself especially when it comes from an animal you adore. 


  1. Hey these guys are the cutest! Very unique animals. My newest discovery in the raw food blog land is this one http://g0lubka.blogspot.com/
    A mother daughter team, you will find some inspiring food ideas there! And such beautiful eye candy! ha
    :) Good health to you

  2. I love Renny's cute teefs! He is truly adorable.