Center offers fleece of mind

Elbert County News
By: Tom Munds
Photo: By Tom Munds
Photo Caption: Kate Blackburn gathers fleece sheared from one of the alpacas from her farm as she explains that often the fleece is dyed different colors like that in the container to beside her before it is spun into yarn that can be used to weave, crochet or knit projects. Blackburn and her husband raise alpacas on their ranch and she runs the Antelope Alpaca Fiber Arts Center on Main Street in Elizabeth. 
Original content from Elbert County News

After raising and loving alpacas for almost 10 years and learning all about the warmth and beauty of items made from alpaca fleece, Kate Blackburn said it seemed natural to bring the Antelope Alpacas Fiber Arts Center to Main Street in Elizabeth.

“We moved to 40 acres in the Elizabeth area in 2005 and looked into raising animals,” she said. “We spent about 18 months learning about alpacas.

“Through the study of them we realized the beauty of the animal, the beauty of the fiber and the fact no animal had to die to harvest the fibers. So a few years ago we began raising alpacas.

“We started four alpacas and we now have 22 alpacas, three lamas and a horse that believes she is the mother of the whole herd.”

She said as they sheared the alpacas and learned about the beauty and versatility of yarn made from the fleece, it seemed a natural next step to open the shop on Main Street in Elizabeth about two years ago.

Read the rest of this story and view the photo gallery at Elbert County News.