Monday, September 9, 2013

Road trip!

Hello blog! I've missed you. Things have been a wee bit nutty around here in the last week, but I'm hoping things have calmed down enough for me to be able to get back to the regular schedule of life. I have at least three long blogposts worth of pictures to share with you, most of which are from our travels around Yorkshire and the Lake District before school started last week. But I want to share a somewhat shorter, less-child-focused road trip that I took over the weekend with Allison up to Toft Alpacas.

Let me just start by saying this post is totally a ploy to be able to post a metric ton of cute alpaca pictures, with a little yarn on the side. You have been warned. If you need more alpaca cuteness, there are more photos over on Flickr.

We pulled in to the car park by these lovely ladies, and then headed inside for a day of playing with colors under the expert tutelage of Debbie Tomkies of DT Craft & Design.
Untitled
The Toft Studio is a fabulous place, full of their yarn and patterns knitted up, all in a glorious array of natural colors.
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
Toft dye day

Then it was time to get to work. First up were some samples with varying dye concentrations in the same color.
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
Then some experiments in color blending...
Toft dye day
While those samples were cooked and rinsed, we went out for a quick tour of the Toft Alpacas farm. **WARNING: MANY, MANY PICTURES OF ADORABLE FUZZY BEASTIES AHEAD**
Toft dye day
There they were, hanging out in a field, minding their own business, when SQUEEEEEE - CRIA!!!!
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
You can bury me now - I am dead from the adorableness.

Then we went into one of the paddocks (are they called paddocks in the UK? Must investigate...). Our guide said "Alpaca are very inquisitive." Indeed:
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
Ded. Ded of the cutes. I am now in desperate need of my own herd of alpaca to keep in the back garden. I'm sure Himself and the neighbors, not to mention the Richmond-upon-Thames Borough Council, will totally understand...

After our walk, we moved on to 25 gr skeins of lace weight that had been mis-packaged by the mill (i.e. 25 gr instead of 100 gr).
Toft dye day
and eventually to full skeins. That's Allison's skein of Jacob Aran-weight (which came out amazingly - check out her photo!), and I did a skein of BFL sock yarn.
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
Everyone ended up with gorgeous yarns!
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
Toft dye day
(the two on the right in this picture are mine)

And before we left, I managed to do something I'd wanted to do all day...
Toft dye day
It was a fabulous day, and many thanks to Debbie and the folks at Toft for making it happen!

2 comments:

Linda said...

So incredibly jealous. LOVE your skein of blue/grey/brown. Yumma.

(and the alpacas, of course) ;-)

Debbie said...

Glad you had such a lovely day. Gorgeous piccies, esp the alpaca :-)

Debbie
xx