Tag Archives: alpaca


img_0956I am simply crazy about this beautiful alpaca scarf given to me by Angela Marshall and have been wearing it nonstop for the three days (although with temperatures predicted in the seventies this week, I may have to take a brief break). I love stopping by to visit Angela and the gift was wholly unexpected, taking me quite off guard.

These super soft and warm scarves come in an assortment of lovely colors and are the perfect size–not too big that they are cumbersome, and not too small to be ineffective. Stop by to visit Angie’s Alpacas and see for yourself her wonderful selection of alpaca yarn (shorn from Cape Ann’s very own alpacas) along with a collection of alpaca hats, mittens, socks, and many more treasures.

frankie-at-angelas-alpacas-copyright-kim-smithFrankie posing for her glamour shot during magic hour

Presently, Angie’s Alpacas is open by appointment. Call 978-729-7180 or email Angela at Angiez65@hotmail.com. As the shop becomes established, so too will the hours. A website and Facebook page, created by Angela’s daughter Jenn, are underway. Angie’s Alpacas is located at Marshall’s Farm, 148 Concord Street, Gloucester.

angies-alpacas-copyright-kim-smithNew grazing area for the alpacas, and they love it!

See previous post about the Angela Marshall’s alpaca yarn here.

Welcome to Angie’s Alpacas

Sneak Peak and Super Exciting news for Cape Ann Knitters and Crafters



angies-alpaca-gloucester-1-copyright-kim-smithAngela Marshall is simply amazing. Since the last time I stopped by to say hello and visit her beautiful alpacas, which was only several weeks ago, she has set up a charming shop in a tiny little red shed that was recently added to the Marshall family compound of farm buildings. Freshly scrubbed, painted, and wares beautifully displayed, there is something for everyone in this petite shop.angies-alpaca-gloucester-copyright-kim-smith

angies-alpaca-gloucester-massachusetts-copyright-kim-smithThe skeins of yarn are shorn and spun from her alpacas and come in a lovely array of soft, natural shades, from creamy white to rich chocolatey browns and blacks. Alpaca, which is as luxurious as cashmere, is not only one of the warmest fibers, it is not in the least itchy.

At Angie’s Alpacas you’ll find alpaca hats, mittens, hand warmers, scarves, socks, super comfortable felted alpaca insoles, and much more.angies-alpaca-gloucester-magnolia-copyright-kim-smith

The alpaca named Magnolia came over to check out the above afghan-in-progress. Christy Marshall, now living in Georgia, is visiting the family farm and is crocheting the throw. The white in the afghan comes from Magnolia!

Presently, Angie’s Alpacas is open by appointment. Call 978-729-7180 or email Angela at Angiez65@hotmail.com. As the shop becomes established, so too will the hours. A website and Facebook page, created by Angela’s daughter Jenn, are underway. Angie’s Alpacas is located at Marshall’s Farm, 148 Concord Street, Gloucester.

You can see Angie’s Alpacas yarns and accessories tomorrow, Saturday, October 1st, at the Fall Festival at Mile Marker One. If the weather isn’t too inclement, the Marshall’s alpacas will be there as well. Admission to the festival is free.

See previous post about the Marshall’s alpaca yarn here.



Harumby is growing so quickly, both eating hay and nursing simultaneously.


That’s Angela in the background. She works from sunup till well past sundown. It’s a tremendous amount of work taking care of the alpacas, all the farm animals, and managing the office at Marshall’s Landscaping Supply.angies-alpaca-gloucester-marshalls-copyright-kim-smith angies-alpaca-gloucester-stormy-copyright-kim-smithHarumby’s Mom, Stormy, has the most intense gaze. She is always on high alert and doesn’t miss a thing that goes on at the farmyard.

Marshalls Farm Stand has a new member of their Alpaca Family

On Thursday, June 16, 2016, the new member of the Alpaca family was born over at Marshalls Farm in West Gloucester. So cute.

Why Merino Wool, Alpaca, and Cashmere Keep You Warm and Dry

wool_fibersIn reference to Joey’s post about wool socks, I thought GMG readers would like to see this cool fiber comparison chart, which shows a range of fibers under a microscope.

Notice how the wool, cashmere, and alpaca individual fibers are composed of many overlapping shafts, which trap air and moisture. Fine wool such as merino absorbs as much as 36 percent of its weight in moisture and then gradually releases it through evaporation, while simultaneously keeping the moisture away from the skin. Wool is also naturally antibacterial, typically for the life of the garment.

Another great property of wool, alpaca, and cashmere is that unlike synthetics, they are renewable resources. Merino sheep and alpacas are shorn once a year, and cashmere is collected from Cashmere goats during the spring molting season. These fibers readily absorb natural dyes and can be processed with the use of minimal or no dyes.

You can read more about the moisture transporting properties of wool here: Backpacking Light

The Scarf, With Pockets!

Scarf with Pockets ©Kim Smith 2014. JPG -3 copy The ideal scarf for photographers ~ a scarf-with-pockets!

If you are anything like me, when out photographing or filming, your coat pockets are so over-stuffed that there is no room for frozen fingers. Typically, my pockets contain second and third alternate lenses, car keys, lens cap, lens wiping cloth, and gloves. The gloves are off so that I can work the cameras, which invariably leads to numb hands and fingers. Meet the scarf-with-pockets. In between shots, you can tuck your hands into the convenient scarf pockets. For added warmth, I worked this in the brioche stitch, which creates a luxuriously textured and lofty pattern.

My favorite yarn currently is Frog Trees’s gorgeous Chunky Alpaca. Alpaca is warm and cozy, with a similarly soft feel to that of cashmere, and is NOT ITCHY!

You can purchase Frog Tree’s Chunky Alpaca from Robert at Coveted Yarn. Frog Tree yarns are fair trade; profits from the sale of yarns goes to the artisan.

Frog Tree chunky Alpaca ©Kim Smith 2014 copyChunky Alpaca comes in a beautiful array of colors. If Robert doesn’t have the color you are looking for in stock, ask, and he will custom order it for you.

4 Skeins Frog Tree Chunky Alpaca

#6 needles (or size to suit your knitting style; I knit very loosely)

Cast on, very loosely 24 sitiches. Work basic brioche stitch for approximately 52 inches. Bind off loosely. Scarf measurement before pockets: 52″ in length, 6″ wide.

For each pocket ( work both simultaneously on the same needles so they come out the same length), loosely cast on 48 stitches. Work knit one pearl one ribbing for one inch. Switch to brioche stitch and work until total length of pockets equals the same width of scarf (in this case, 6 inches). Bind off very loosely. Slightly stretch and block ribbing to equal width of the pocket. Stitch pockets to scarf.

Scarf with Pockets ©Kim Smith 2014. JPGPocket Detail

End Notes ~ The brioche stitch is a little tricky. Heidi, who works at Coveted Yarn, recommended online youtube tutorials, which I did, and found it was a terrific way to learn a new pattern. This is the perfect winter for an extra thick and lofty scarf and I’ll be busy on a second scarf-with-pockets because daughter Liv has claimed the red one in the photo.

I have recently noticed scarves with pockets in shops and the pocket openings were acclimated horizontally rather than vertically, as are the pockets in this pattern. That’s a great idea, because the pockets can then be used to also hold items however, the openings would be less conveniently placed for warming hands.

Frog Tree chunky Alpaca Coveted yarn ©Kim Smith 2014