One of the things I did back in May when Sean Price came out to shear the llamas and alpaca was to pull out and tag every llama and alpaca fleece I had. It's quite a stash. In fact, it was so extensive that I couldn't do anything with it. I was overwhelmed every time I thought about it much less looked at it. Sean and his partners Ruby and Robin, own Figment Ranch in Cypress, TX. I don't know how many llamas they have right now but I'm sure it's somewhere above 70. Sean is the president of the South Central Llama Association and has been shearing llamas for nearly 20 years.
I tell you all of this about Sean so you will understand his credentials but also to understand how he ends up with a huge amount of llama fleece. Not only do they have the fleeces from their own animals but also the fleeces that he shears for others who don't want to keep the fiber. When he was here in May, we were talking about my pile of fleeces. He said he was getting ready to drive up to Paint Rock, TX and drop off a truckload of fleeces to be woven into rugs. What a fabulous idea.
Paint Rock is the home of Ingrid's Hand-Woven Rugs. Ingrid and Reinhard Schoffthaler started the business back in the late 1970's and the company has been going strong ever since. Ingrid is long gone and her husband has retired. The company has new owners who are working hard to carry on the same tradition of excellent workmanship in their hand woven rugs.
So I pulled out all my fleeces, tagged them with my name and contact information and threw them in the back of Sean's trailer. I seem to remember it as 23 fleeces or thereabouts. Off they went. I got a call from Renee and her husband, new owners of Ingrid's, over the summer to ask what I wanted done with my fleeces. What size rugs? Did I want finge? How many different colors should my fleeces be separated into? This past Monday I got another call from Renee. They were ready to start weaving my rugs which would be ready for us before Christmas. Was the timing all right for me? Yes! Would I be coming out to Paint Rock to pick up the rugs or should they ship them to me? I pulled up the map of Texas. Paint Rock sits graciously in the northern part of Concho County. It's 32 miles east of San Angelo, 72 miles south of Abilene, 180 miles west of Waco and not quite 300 miles from my house in Cat Spring. OK. Ship the rugs, please.
Not only did the weaving go quickly, the shipping was amazing. Renee needs to maintain her magic touch with UPS. I gave her my credit card information on Thursday morning. The rugs were shipped out on Thursday afternoon and arrived at my house Friday evening. Holy cow!
My llama and alpaca fiber never looked so good. I love the rugs! I had asked for random stripes in three basic colors - light, medium and dark. They did exactly that. I'm surprised by the high proportion of light color in the rugs although I shouldn't be. Smoky is the only dark colored animal, Shiraz is a medium brown and the others are mostly white/cream with some red. Now to get prices on them and get them all photographed. Look for the rugs on the website in the next couple of days. Tomorrow I'll tell you about the rugs I've been weaving.