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Important Photo Requirements

Photos and logos must be high resolution for print or they will appear pixelated and will not look attractive. Also, our printer rejects them.

High resolution means they should be 300 dpi, never before sized. This means we need a high quality photo and one that is also large in terms of inches. For instance, a photo that is 300 dpi and 7 x 9 inches is far more likely to meet the requirements than a photo that is 300 dpi and 2 x 4 inches.

Images that are 72 dpi (and suitable for internet) will not work for print.

Acceptable file formats include: .PDF, .JPG & .PNG

The original photo or image is ideal.

Be sure to name your file with your farm name.

Hint: When you are taking photos with a camera or phone, make sure to check that the setting you are using for photo quality is as high as possible.

Purple Cat’s newest furry resident needs a name



The newest addition to Farmer Casey’s Ranch still needs a name.

She’s a little more than 5 weeks old, weighs about 33 pounds and has the softest fur.

She’s also the first alpaca born on the Purple Cat farm, located on the site of a former car dealership at 4738 McCartney Road in the township, and joins four other alpacas — Beulah, Honey Boo Boo, Wally Castle and Dallas Winston — who have lived there for the past two years.

Also on the farm are five goats, two donkeys, almost 50 chickens, 30 ducks, two dogs, five cats and a rabbit, and they’re all cared for by a 20-odd-person grounds crew, made up of clients of the Purple Cat, which offers day-program alternatives for adults with special needs.

“It’s definitely about that sense of responsibility and accomplishment,” said Marc Saculla, site supervisor at Farmer Casey’s Ranch. “If those alpacas don’t have hay, it’s bad for the alpaca. It’s our clients’ job to feed them, to clean their pens. … It helps them [develop] tangible skills that they can transfer into employment.”

Saculla noted that all Purple Cat sites, including the original location on Champion Street in Youngstown, focus on basic adult education,helping clients to maintain existing cognitive skills and develop new ones.

Read more about the program and the alpacas in Saturday’s Vindicator or on

Read the original here.

New Wool Mill, Fibers First in Post Falls, ID is Producing High Quality, Eco-friendly Wool Roving and Yarn for Paradise Fibers and Other Local Farms

From PR Web

A new woolen mill in Post Falls, Idaho is creating some very high quality yarn and wool roving for for the craft industry from local farms. Nearly all of her wool and alpaca are processed from

nearby farms reducing shipping costs & carbon footprint. Paradise Fibers is now sending wool and referrals to Fibers First.

Post Falls, ID (PRWEB) June 30, 2014

The Fibers First woolen Mill is now open and is processing wool daily. Fiber First is both the name and the idea behind the small mill operation owned by Karen Goodson. Fiber mills just like Fibers First were previously sprinkled across the US when wool was more of a domestic market staple. However, with the rise of synthetic fibers, the popularity of wool has fallen to the wayside. Alternative materials combined with cheap overseas labor caused many mills to close and the equipment sold overseas.

Domestic wool production is slowly on the rise as it is acknowledged as a sustainable green resource. Mills like Fibers First are adding jobs and reducing the carbon footprint by not shipping the fiber to China and heading back and processing locally.

Fiber mills were the foundation of how fibers such as sheep’s wool, alpaca & mohair are processed for both hobbies and commercial uses. The tools that worked at the turn of the century, what some would call antiques, offers Fibers First a unique way to address the needs of the small batch local wool producers. Karen uses carders from the 1910’s a picker from the 40’s and a pin drafter with a known history dating back to at least the 50’s. These machines are the industrial version of personal wool carders used by hobbyists commonly used for processing small batches of wool.

Bringing to mind the idea of slow food, local producers often look for processors like Fibers First that allow them to showcase individual breed or animals. These processed fleeces highlights the attributes of the fibers and animals to create a strong connect to history for the end user. Contact: fibersfirst(at)gmail(dot)com for more information.

Paradise Fibers is dedicated to partnering with and supporting US fiber mills like Fibers First that embrace the importance of domestic wool in the local markets. Paradise also partners with local wool producers to sell diverse wool roving from heritage breeds often unavailable from commercial sources.

Paradise Fibers has been in business since 1997 selling wool roving, knitting yarn, spinning wheels and craft supplies. The company is family owned and operated and consists of a variety of Romine family members young and old with a sprinkle of dedicated fiber junkies and stunt men.

Read the original here.


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Goode alpacas have mixed feelings on shearing

By Luanne Rife | The Roanoke Times

GOODE — Vacquero did not go quietly to the shearing room floor. As the first of 15 alpaca to be parted with his fuzzy coat Friday morning at A Goode View Alpaca Farm, just east of Bedford,

Vacquero squealed his unhappiness as the shearers lowered him to the thick mat.

He continued to cry as his [hooves] were tied and the pulley system pulled the ropes taut.

As Trevor Gellaty swept the shears along Vacquero’s belly, working paths around his body to free him of his blanket, the alpaca continued to cry. Gellaty’s 12-year-old son, Ethan, held onto Vacquero’s ears, moving his head this way and that under his father’s commands, while his wife, Tania, scooped the fiber into clear plastic bags labeled with Vacquero’s name.

Soon enough Vacquero was freed, quickly rising to his feet, a mere slip of an animal compared with his former fuzzy substantial self. Someone joked: If only we, too, could shed our winter padding so easily.

Vacquero is just one of James and Lisa Beck’s growing herd of alpacas. Visitors to their farm, mostly moms with young children, had come out to watch the shearing. They didn’t know what to expect. Neither did the Becks when they decided to become alpaca farmers.

James Beck grew up in a tiny Philadelphia row house in a neighborhood where the only green was the few blades of grass that pushed themselves up from cracks in the concrete. Until a year and a half ago the couple lived in suburban Philadelphia with their son, who was nearing graduation from high school. James Beck always liked animals; Lisa Beck wasn’t so sure, as she just hadn’t been around them all that much. But they came to be charmed by alpacas, and while visiting the Pennsylvania Farm Show in Harrisburg they sat in on an Alpaca 101 seminar.

Beck turned to his wife one day and said they should buy a farm and raise alpacas. “She said, ‘you’re crazy,’ ” he said. But off they went, looking at farms in Tennessee, Virginia and Pennsylvania.

On Mother’s Day two years ago, they put their house up for sale, sold it the same day and by Tuesday had made an offer on the Goode farm. They started out with six alpacas. As of two Saturdays ago, when Priscilla was born, they were up to 17. They might have 18 by now as Magnolia was due to give birth any day. Last year’s shearing sent another very pregnant alpaca into labor.

The Becks had to take their alpacas to another farm last spring to be sheared, as they had too few to rate a visit by the shearers. The Gellatys of Australia come each year to the United States, traveling through nine states in three months, relieving alpacas of their coats.

Their hair is called fiber rather than fur or wool, and ranges in color from white to tan to brown to black. Alpacas look much like llamas but are smaller and better tempered. Their fiber is considered softer than angora, and warmer, lighter and less prickly than sheep’s wool.

Tania Gellaty was separating it by color, texture and grade. The blanket is of better quality than the leg fiber. Lisa Beck said she will wash and dry the fiber and then send the bags to a mill in New York where it will be spun into yarn and roving, a flat fabric used by felters.

The yarns and roving are sold in the farm’s store, along with scarves, gloves and plush animals made from alpaca fiber. Each skein of yarn is labeled with the name and photo of the alpaca who shed his fibers for it.
Though Vacquero made a noisy show of parting with his, the other alpacas didn’t seem to mind nearly as much. Some rolled onto their backs, exposing their bellies to be sheared with the eagerness of puppies wanting a belly rub.

Baby Priscilla anxiously watched her mom, then took a quick turn for her first shearing before running off to nestle beneath Niska, seeking comfort from suckling. The other, more seasoned alpacas, even Vacquero, calmly milled about.

Contact Luanne Rife at
Read the original story here.

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