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We hope to provide a home for a small alpaca herd that is in urgent need of one. They will expand the diversity of our small fiber farm Read more

Curtis, MI Crafts
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Funded!

This project was successfully funded on February 4, 2013.

We hope to provide a home for a small alpaca herd that is in urgent need of one. They will expand the diversity of our small fiber farm

Curtis, MI Crafts
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About this project

Sam and Gaia
Sam and Gaia

***Project Update:  We are so thankful that we have met our initial funding goal and we couldn't have brought the alpacas home without you!  One thing we have discovered after bringing everyone home is that we definitely need more barn space for them, as the alpacas prefer to be inside during inclement weather.  All the funds raised through Kickstarter will be used for the animals.  We will likely need to add onto our barn as well as fence in the additional pasture and build a summer shelter so your contributions will be put to good use!  Thanks again for backing our project or considering being a backer.

Spinners End is a modest fiber farm where we raise quality animals for their fiber which is then spun into yarn;  woven, knitted or felted into a new creation.  These fibers are processed, in part, by hand on the farm and in part a small local carding mill. Our fibers are blended into soft naturally colored wool blends that may include fiber from our Shetland sheep,  llamas, pygora goats and angora rabbits.

Fiber produced from our animals
Fiber produced from our animals
Handspun wool on a drop spindle
Handspun wool on a drop spindle
A Teaching Moment
A Teaching Moment
Handspun wool from our animals
Handspun wool from our animals

The welfare of our animals is of the utmost concern. Our fiber animals are a part of our family- everyone has a name and receives attention and affection. It is our intention that they will live their lives out at our farm if at all possible. Our animals are guarded against predators (including coyotes and wolves in our area) by their companion llamas. The animals graze in a small pasture during the summer months and are supplemented with quality locally grown grass hay. In our area, grass hay is generally harvested only once a season, allowing nesting grassland birds the opportunity to raise and fledge a full brood of young. During the winter months, grass hay is supplemented with treats of whole oats. Fresh water, mineral and kelp supplements are available at all times. Animals are vaccinated and examined for internal parasites and wormed if necessary. Part of our philosophy is we don’t believe in the routine application of chemicals or pesticides where it isn’t warranted.

Lila and  Miss Frizz
Lila and Miss Frizz

Another philosophy of ours is, if possible, to provide help where help is needed, and here is where our Kickstarter project comes into play.

There is a wonderful man who owns an alpaca farm a couple of hours away from us.  Unfortunately, life circumstances are forcing him out of business and he needs to quickly rehome his remaining Suri Alpacas.  He has four crias (baby alpacas) and nine adult females, many of whom are bred.  He needs to recoup at least a partial investment in his animals so he cannot just give them away.  He is asking very little compared to their actual monetary worth.  Unfortunately, there are few folks seeking to add these animals to their farms at this point in time in our area so he is left with animals that need a home within just a few weeks.  He isn't sure what will happen to them if he isn't able to sell them.  Some alpacas in this area are going to auction and being sold as meat animals because of the surplus of animals and the increase in hay prices.

Alpacas are very curious and gentle animals
Alpacas are very curious and gentle animals
Amazing fiber!
Amazing fiber!

They are beautiful creatures, very earth friendly as they tread softly on the land and provide excellent fertilizer and fiber.  They are very social animals and it is a joy to be out amongst them listening and watching them interact with one another.  And those soulful eyes!

A curious Cria (baby alpaca)
A curious Cria (baby alpaca)

Spinners End Farm is a small family farm owned by Sherry, Will and our three smallish children. We live amongst Shetland Sheep, numerous English angora rabbits, two rescue olde English babydoll southdown sheep, three rescue llamas, two pygora goats, a flock of chickens, three dogs, two ducks, two cats, three guinea pigs, and a few fish. We live in the Eastern Upper Peninsula of Michigan in a small town called Curtis.

Getting Pats
Getting Pats

Spinners End was started with the gift of a spinning wheel and three rescue llamas. We soon added a small flock of registered purebred Shetland sheep. Our Shetlands originate from one of the finest breeding programs in the region, where the focus is on soft, fine fleeces. English angoras came to our farm to add diversity to our fine fiber and because they are such delightful creatures. Our children (ages 12, 9, and 8) assist us with some small, but significant tasks to help them learn about the responsibility, care and joy that comes from animal stewardship; the biology of the animal and the ecology of a farm.

Winter on the Farm
Winter on the Farm

By adopting these animals in need we will also be able to expand our fiber line by adding an array of natural alpaca colors. The expansion will include the addition of both huacaya and suri alpacas which produce very different fiber types.

We appreciate your consideration of our project, thank you so much for reading the story of our journey!

Risks and challenges

Adding more animals to the farm will mean adding additional fencing in the spring.

We have an opportunity to use fallow pasture just down the road at two other farms, so this obstacle will be relatively easy to overcome. It would mean additional work putting up secure fencing and a shelter for the summer months; they would all return to our barn for the winter.

The project will be broken into two different phases. First, we are trying to raise initial funding to help bring the animals home. Secondly, if we achieve funding over our initial goal it will be used toward fencing and building a three sided shelter.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

FAQ

  • The farm owner recently has told us we can purchase all 14 alpacas for $5,000.00 or we could buy fewer for $500.00 each. We will be able to bring them all home with the money pledged thus far with what we had saved, and are extremely grateful for the generosity from all our backers! We woudn't be able to bring them to our farm without all of you. Anything over what the animals themselves cost will go to fencing in new pasture and a summer shelter for them. Kickstarter fees are removed as well and the cost of the rewards. This has been such a rewarding experience for us!

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Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $1 or more

    3 backers

    Virtual kisses from Igraine the llama from Spinner's End Farm! Igraine loves to give kisses....

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    Pledge $5 or more

    9 backers

    A montage of digital photos from Spinner's End Farm, emailed to help conserve our planets natural resources.

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    Pledge $15 or more

    6 backers

    Set of five different hand stamped notecards depicting animals from our farm from hand carved stamps.

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    Pledge $20 or more

    2 backers

    Set of ten different hand stamped notecards depicting animals from our farm from hand carved stamps.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    17 backers

    A bar of Hand felted soap, in your choice of scent. Wool is wrapped around a bar of soap and then felted to the bar so you have a gentle exfoliating scrubby attached to your soap!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $35 or more

    1 backer

    A Spinner's End Farm Calendar

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    Pledge $50 or more

    16 backers

    A skein of handspun yarn from our farm and a pair of bamboo knitting needles/or crochet hook OR a luxury fiber sampler.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $75 or more

    0 backers

    A set of 15 pairs of bamboo knitting needles (circs in multiple lengths, straights or dpn's) or a set of bamboo crochet hooks

    OR ***New Reward*** a cotton Spinner's End Farm T-shirt with our farm logo printed on it.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    7 backers

    A half pound of fiber from our farm and a maple drop spindle.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $150 or more

    1 backer

    Two skeins of handspun yarn and a set of 15 pairs of bamboo knitting needles or a set of bamboo crochet hooks.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $200 or more

    1 backer

    One pound of fiber from our farm and a maple drop spindle, or half a pound of handspun yarn and a set of bamboo knitting needles or crochet hooks.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    0 backers

    A visit to Spinner's End Farm which includes your choice of a lesson in spinning, knitting, or fiber/yarn dyeing; materials included. Date by mutual agreement and travel expenses are not included.

    You also will receive the reward from the $200 level.

    $500 is the price of one alpaca. You get to name one of the Crias if you would like to!

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Funding period

- (23 days)