A video

Sunday 22nd April 2018

I can highly recommend the alpaca gardening services - they are certainly making an excellent job of the lawn. #alpacas #gardening #suffolk #sun

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A video

Saturday 21st April 2018

How I wish I could really roll this fast for Nuno felting! #nuno #felting #suffolk

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A video

Wednesday 18th April 2018

I’m having a new firm in - alpaca gardening services. They do particularly well with pruning japonica and mowing the lawn. #alpacas #gardening #spring #suffolk

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Wednesday 18th April 2018

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Enjoying the sunshine! #alpacas #sun #suffolk

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Monday 16th April 2018

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So much alpaca fleece needed for felted slippers! #alpaca #felting #handmade #suffolk

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A video

Friday 13th April 2018

It must be Spring. Pronking alpacas! #alpacas #suffolk #spring #pronking

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A video

Thursday 12th April 2018

A short dance to welcome Spring by Maud the Maran and Carol the crested Leghorn. #chickens #spring #suffolk

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Wednesday 11th April 2018

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More alpacas on a scarf and alpacas in the garden. #alpacas #nuno #felting #suffolk #suffolkopenstudios

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Monday 9th April 2018

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Alpaca vase together with the source of the inspiration. Though no Norman (brown) in this one! #felting #handmade #alpaca #alpacas #suffolk

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Sunday 8th April 2018

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Sometimes after lots of disappointments, you get something that you really like! #ecocreate #ecodyeing #suffolk

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A video

Saturday 7th April 2018

Alpaca joy. #alpacas #spring #suffolk

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Thursday 5th April 2018

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Alpacas inside and out! Inside on a new scarf and outside in the garden enjoying the sunshine - and the new Spring grass! #spring #suffolk #sun #alpacas

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Tuesday 3rd April 2018

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No wonder those alpacas don’t mind the rain. I poured the water onto this fleece in preparation for felting and it just sat there! #alpaca #felting #suffolk

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Sunday 1st April 2018

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Some different ‘varieties’ of alpaca fleece from our alpaca shearer. Looking forward to trying them out especially the suri fleece! Should mean I have some spare for others to try out too. #alpaca #felting #suffolk #workshop

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Friday 30th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - community. My first step into the art world was through @suffolkopenstudios Anyone could join - there was no assessment so I dared to step out and open my ‘studio’ and reveal my art for the first time. The community of artists around Sudbury who I met then and since have been wonderfully supportive and many have become good friends. Also the many artists I’ve met through craft fairs who are always ready for a chat and good advice. Thank-you all. #suffolkopenstudios #suffolk #craft

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Wednesday 28th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - organisation. Having been a teacher for over 20 years I’ve had to be very organised, but that’s not the whole truth. When I have a deadline coming up, say for a workshop or a craft fair then I get very focussed and keep to my lists. But my true nature is to drift and dream. So once there’s no immediate deadline, I prefer to go where the mood takes me which is not always good for making what I planned to make. I do love lists but I rarely follow them. Like this wall hanging - there’s times of clear achievement but lots of drifting in between. A bit butterfly-like I suppose! #handmade #felting #suffolk #butterflies

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Tuesday 27th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - books. I have only recently discovered Rebecca Solnit and if you’ve ever experienced mansplaining, then this is the book for you. And if you don’t know what it is, once you read this book, you’ll realise how often it happens. Warning: this book can make you quite angry! What does this have to do with being a maker? It has made me more determined to ensure that our making is recognised for its huge value and importance - as huge and important as any ‘male’ business. #mansplaining #rebeccasolnit #women

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Sunday 25th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker Being a maker means … Hmm this has caused a lot of thought today. For me it’s about transformation. Taking the raw fleece from the alpacas and transforming it so it is almost unrecognisable yet retaining the essence of the animals - their softness and gentleness. Interesting that I’m talking about transformation as there’s an awful lot of butterflies coming up in my work at the moment! #alpaca #alpacas #suffolk #felting #butterflies

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Sunday 25th March 2018

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Look who’s in the garden today! #alpacas #suffolk

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Thursday 22nd March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker sketchbooks and lists. I don’t have a sketchbook as such - most of my designs come out of my hands at the time though they may well have been simmering away for a while in my head beforehand. If I have a particular idea (like cave painting) I will research online and print off examples. I am a great list maker though - for everything- especially when preparing for workshops and Fairs! #workshop #craft #suffolk

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Thursday 22nd March 2018

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More alpaca loveliness for the Hartest Art and Craft Market on Saturday 10 - 4. Hartest Institute, Hartest Green. #alpaca #suffolk #hartestartandcraftmarket

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Thursday 22nd March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - a day in my life. Because I work from the fleece of our alpacas, there’s a lot of different jobs to be done (alongside looking after them which is four hay visits per day, feeding our cats and chickens!) so a typical day will be felting first thing, then doing emails and other admin, followed by some weaving, then in the evening teasing, drumcarding and/or spinning. Not forgetting poo clearing in the morning of course!) #craft #alpacas #suffolk #spinning #weaving #felting

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Wednesday 21st March 2018

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More of the alpaca collection on sale @hartestartandcraftmarket on Saturday 10-4. #handmade #alpaca #suffolk #hartestartandcraftmarket

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Tuesday 20th March 2018

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New for 2018 - the alpaca collection! To be unveiled @hartestartandcraftmarket on Saturday. #craft #suffolk #alpaca #felting #hartestartandcraftmarket

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Monday 19th March 2018

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Inspiration - I love shapes, shapes created by dark against light. Working with only two or three colours encourages me to simplify everything down into abstract shapes. #marchmeetthemaker #craft #suffolk

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Monday 19th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - can’t live without my drumcarder. It straightens all the alpaca fibres into beautifully fluffy batts ready for spinning or felting. #alpaca #suffolk #craft

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Friday 16th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - helper. Mike, my husband has been 100% supportive of my move into alpacadom. From making teas for the workshops to manning our stall at Craft Fairs, he does it all. As his retirement looms, I’m hoping he’ll offer homemade lunches and cakes for the workshops! #suffolk #workshop

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A video

Thursday 15th March 2018

#marchmeetthemaker - boomerang. Well, if you’re making a gif, it has to be an alpaca, doesn’t it? This is Norman, doing what he does best. #suffolk #alpacas

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Thursday 15th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker dreams and plans. Yes I’m behind again! If I’m honest I have achieved my dreams by living with alpacas and sharing their amazing gentleness with others as well as passing on the skills I’ve learned. So my plans are to do more of the same! This is a Nuno felted alpaca wrap inspired by beautiful moths. #craft #workshops #hartestartandcraftmarket #alpacas

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Tuesday 13th March 2018

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How routine goes out of the window! This met our eyes this morning - with three alpacas feasting where they shouldn’t. I was going to make a scarf, but instead have been repairing fences! #alpacas

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Tuesday 13th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - workclothes Just three important items: one to protect my feet and the others, my hands. My trusty yardboots which I wear in all weathers to tend to the alpacas, wonderful wrist warmers courtesy of #turtle doves and vinyl gloves. My hands take quite a pounding with all the felting so it’s important to keep them warm (and dry unfortunately as I can get stiff joints in my fingers after making a scarf - many hours of cold wet hands!) Ah, how we suffer for our art! #craft #suffolk

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Friday 9th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker Post 2 how it’s made - #weaving I don’t have a loom as such but weave around cardboard. I weave with my alpaca handspun which is gloriously soft thanks to our wonderful alpacas! #suffolk #handspun #craft

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Friday 9th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - how it’s made This is post one today for wet-felting! Take a plastic resist, cover it in alpaca fleece, wet it, wrap it round the resist, soap it and rub and roll! Such a simple craft with amazing results. #felting #alpaca #craft

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Thursday 8th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - flatlay. I love making bowls, especially as each one is shaped by hand so no two are ever the same. There’s something wonderful about holding all that alpaca softness in your hands. #felting #suffolk #hartestartandcraftmarket

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Wednesday 7th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - routine It’s these three who dictate my routine. Especially this time of year when they’re in a smaller area to rest the grass. They have two bags of hay taken out every two hours to keep them occupied. For some reason they think the new hay tastes much better than what’s already out for them! I do my making between these visits and try not to get too distracted by them. Oh, there’s also the poo clearing to do! #alpacas #suffolk

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Tuesday 6th March 2018

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#marchmeetthemaker - workspace. My workspace is our dining room so we have to eat in the kitchen unless we have visitors. I do like to work in a mess, but have tidied up before taking this photo! I also run my workshops in here and in the conservatory. Although it can be quite dark, it has a great view out into the garden. I can’t see the alpacas from here which means I don’t get too distracted! #workshops #suffolk #felting

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Monday 5th March 2018

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Finally caught up with #marchmeetthemaker - photography Taking photos of textiles is particularly difficult, especially when the most important thing is its softness! Outside is good and I even have a pop-up lighting box to help sometimes. Scarves are the worst to photo as you might notice from my previous post! #alpaca #suffolk #felting

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Monday 5th March 2018

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Still catching up with Day 4 of #marchmeetthemaker - favourite to make. At the moment it’s definitely the Nuno- felted scarves. I love that it gives me a bigger canvas to work on and it’s exciting seeing how a design made flat then looks when wrapped as a scarf. The silk combined with the soft #alpaca fleece makes such a delicate scarf. #suffolk #hartestartandcraft

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Sunday 4th March 2018

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How I started - I fell in love with a beautiful Shetland fleece at a Smallholder Fair and then realised that I needed to do something with it! Using YouTube videos I taught myself to spin and then to weave and felt. My dream was to own my own animals to work from but it took 5 years after this before we got the alpacas. #marchmeetthemaker #alpacas

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Sunday 4th March 2018

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Slightly late starting the #marchmeetthemaker challenge so will combine a couple of posts to catch up! My name is Clare Kiely and I have three beautiful alpacas who live with us in Great Waldingfield in #Suffolk. I handspin, weave and felt their super soft fleece and sell my work under the name Suffolk Alpaca. I also run workshops as I love passing on these ancient skills to others. #alpacas

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A video

Saturday 3rd March 2018

A brief snapshot of the busy life of an alpaca. #alpacas #snow #suffolk #meetthemaker

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Friday 2nd March 2018

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Finally alpacas in the snow! Lured out by the hay. #alpacas #suffolk #snow

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Friday 2nd March 2018

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Even a kindle deserves to be kept warm in the cold weather! #alpaca #handspun #weaving #suffolk

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Thursday 1st March 2018

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Cats know just how to cope with very cold weather! #cats #suffolk #snow

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Wednesday 28th February 2018

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Wanted a lovely photo of the alpacas out in the snow. No chance! #alpacas #suffolk #snow

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Tuesday 27th February 2018

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Fergus has already put on an extra layer to prepare for the extreme cold! #alpacas #suffolk #coldday

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Thursday 22nd February 2018

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It seems I was mistaken - I thought Clement was white! #alpacas #suffolk

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Monday 19th February 2018

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Hat now finished! Finally a felt hat that can be folded up and put in a bag! #felted #alpaca #suffolk #workshop #craft

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Friday 16th February 2018

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At last I seem to have cracked 3D Nuno felting. This means making something strong without it being thick. New workshop to come, I think! #nuno #felting #suffolk #nunofeltingworkshop

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Tuesday 13th February 2018

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Alpacas are just so beautiful #alpaca #Suffolk

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