It’s an ALPACALYPSE! Two alpaca-centric vendors storm the market:
Flatland Alpacas & The Drunk Alpaca! Come check out these special guest vendors!
About Flatland Alpaca
We sat down with Loria of Flatland Alpacas — one our newest guest vendors at the Winter Farmers Market!
1. How did your business get started?
My father always wanted alpaca and I had a farm that was basically void of animals. We purchased our first two in 2004 and have had over 23 born on the farm. We learned everything as we went, read all we possibly could, attended seminars and neonatal clinics and asked a million questions. Then we made it work for us.
2. What’s unique about your product?
Soil to Skein 100% local. I grow, spin and dye all of yarn with fiber donated by our herd of alpaca. Minimally processed, hand-dyed in small batches, the dye lots are small and unique. The beauty of the colorways I create is directly related to the small size of the lots I dye. Each skein is truly individual and one-of-a-kind. The yarn is “sun-dried” using only Mother Nature for drying.
3. What’s the story behind your business name?
While at a seminar in Maine, we were asked where our farm was. When I replied “CT” the speaker said “Ah, a flatlander.”
4. What is your favorite product?
Our hand-dyed yarns that I weave or knit with. I am a graphic artist by trade and have been a maker since I can remember.
5. Tell us about your use of local.
We blend our alpaca fiber with wool from several fellow-CT fiber farms and are proud to support local farmers by purchasing their wool. We have developed a relationship with these farmers and know that they take good care of their animals nutritionally and humanely.
6. What do you like to do when you have spare time?
Who has spare time? I LOVE what I am creating from fiber (yarn) to mud (ceramic buttons). When not in the studio, I often copy nature’s color combinations when deciding what will go into my yarn colors. I am inspired by good old Mother Nature – she serves up such color combinations and textures that I never tire of.
7. What’s one thing you want everyone to know about your business?
Don’t be afraid to ask questions! Understand the process or the origins of how our products are made, where they come from and how they’re constructed. We create a quality yarn that isn’t hard on people or the planet. It is easy to be disconnected from the source of so much that we eat, consume, or use.
8. What are the best and hardest things about being in this industry?
I am constantly humbled by the whole process of taking fleece and creating yarn. While this journey has been difficult and sometimes frustrating, it’s helped me to value the time, love and effort of fiber producers and farmers in general. Getting people to know the difference between a yarn that has been cared for in an ethical manner from the moment it grew on an animal’s back to yarn that is “super washed,” which is dipped in chemicals to remove the scales and then coated in plastic and that synthetic yarns are bad for the earth, since they are made from petroleum.