Join us for a special complimentary webinar taking place on

Wednesday, January 26th at 7pm

exclusively for OHS Members

by Dr. Adrienne Hood

“Beyond Keep Me Warm One Night: Dorothy Burnham – Weaver, Curator and Inspiration”, a tribute to the life and works of Dorothy Burnham.

Many of us are aware of Dorothy’s famous book, “Keep Me Warm One Night”, but we may not be as familiar with her other works, career, and the impact she had on our fibre community. We are excited to be able to share this tribute with you.

About Dr. Adrienne Hood, Dr. Hood began her career as a professional weaver, after which she obtained a doctorate in American History with a focus on textile production. For over a decade she served as the Curator of North American Textiles at the Royal Ontario Museum before moving to the University of Toronto’s Department of History where she taught early American History and Material Culture. Her books include: Fashioning Fabric: The Arts of Spinning and Weaving in Early Canada (2007), and the Weaver’s Craft: Cloth, Commerce and Industry in Early Pennsylvania (2003).

Please note that this presentation will not be recorded and attendees must be current (2022) OHS Members. You can purchase your membership here.

Title:  Virtual Zoom Presentation: Beyond Keep Me Warm One Night, Dorothy Burnham – Weaver, Curator and Inspiration
Date: Wednesday January 26th @ 7PM ET
Registration: pre-registration is required through zoom.

Register Now for the OHS 2022 Webinar Series

Amazing Alpaca Fibre

We are pleased to bring you another OHS webinar series. This year we are taking a closer look at alpaca fibre. The dates and webinar descriptions are below. The following are the list of prices.

Entire Series (OHS Members) $60

Entire Series (Non-Members) $80

Purchase Series

Individual Webinar (OHS Members) $20 (to purchase see links below)
Individual Webinar (Non-Members) $25
Fibre Pack $45 (limited availability)

January Webinar

Title: Raising Alpacas – One Farm’s Perspective

Speaker: Mel Ramsay

Date: Sunday January 23rd, 2022 @ 11am ET

Description: This one-hour zoom presentation will be streamed in real-time from one of the barns on our farm. We will introduce you to alpacas as a species – where they originally came from, what we mean when we say they are Camelids, what they are used for. We will talk about what it takes to raise alpacas – where they live, what they eat, what health issues we look out for, how they reproduce. Using one of our females as a demonstration model, we will show you what we do to keep them healthy (the husbandry) – trimming toes, checking teeth, shearing, checking body conditioning. We will also discuss what farming looks like when you are an alpaca producer in Canada – the weather, access to good veterinary care, predator pressure, hay storage etc. Then we will move into a discussion about fibre – we will talk about shearing, fibre sorting and basic fibre classing. The aim of our fibre discussion will be to give you the basics so that you can take the subsequent classes with some overall understanding of alpaca fibre.

Bio: Lickety Spit Fibre Farm is a diversified farming operation that raises alpacas and sheep as well as producing value-added products on farm. We are passionate advocates of natural fibre and environmental stewardship, ethical animal husbandry and knowledge-sharing. The fibre produced by our wool-breed sheep and alpacas is used to produce lovely yarn (locally milled and botanically dyed) and other raw materials to be used by textile artists, makers and creators.
Our farm offers experiential learning for students, farm tours, off-farm agricultural education events and on-farm events. We are always eager to introduce others to how amazing alpacas, sheep and other fibre animals are, to advocate for sustainable farming practice, and to demonstrate how fundamentally important fibre animals are to a healthy planet. Our farm is a partnership between Michele Bain and Melinda Ramsay. The sheep operation transitioned to a fibre-focus in 2012, and we got our first alpacas shortly after that. Melinda organizes the annual fibre market Landmade, and is one of the original founders of The Hamilton Fibre Forge. Michele is the Chair of Agricultural Education for the Binbrook Agricultural Society. Lickety Spit Fibre Farm is a proud member of the Upper Canada Fibreshed, the Ontario Sheep Farmers, Alpaca Ontario and The Ontario Federation of Agriculture.

February Webinar

Title: Preparing Alpaca Fibre for Spinning –  Hands-On Workshop

Speaker: Julia Lee

Date: Sunday February 13th, 2022 @ 2pm ET

Optional Fibre Pack Purchase: $45 (DEADLINE TO PURCHASE: January 30/ ONLY 40 Available)

Description: Julia will introduce participants to a range of alpaca fibres, using the fibre pack for examples (both raw and washed), and will demonstrate ways to prepare them for spinning. She will also cover blending and how to select appropriate fibres for a project. Purchase of the fibre pack is recommended but not required. This workshop will interest spinners, felters, and anyone who wants to use alpaca fibre in their projects.

Details: If they wish to try the techniques addressed, participants will need a pair of hand carders and either their own alpaca fibre (plus wool and silk for blending) or the optional fibre pack.

Bio: Julia Lee is a graduate, instructor, and coordinator of the OHS Spinning Certificate program. She teaches spinning, creates yarn on commission, and knits professionally. Her business, Provenance Yarns and Textiles, promotes the appreciation and use of Ontario fibres, which she supplies through her Fibre Club and uses in her creations whenever possible.

March Webinar

Title: Spinning Alpaca Fibre

Speaker: Beth Showalter

Date: Sunday March 20th, 2022 @ 2pm ET

Description: Are you interested in adding a bit of luxury to your spinning?  Alpaca is a fibre that is lovely to spin and creates gorgeous yarns that are a joy to use.  In this hands-on virtual workshop, we will explore how to spin alpaca fibre and blends. Note: Participants who attended part 2: Preparing Alpaca Fibre for Spinning with Julia Lee will use the fibres/blends from that session during this hands-on workshop.  It is not required that participants attend both workshops, though encouraged.

Bio: Beth Showalter completed the OHS Spinning Certificate Program in 2014 with distinction and is now an instructor in the program.  She is a spinner who enjoys experimenting, sharing ideas, learning new techniques and following spinning tangents…

April Webinar

Title: Weaving & Felting with Alpaca Fibre – Studio Tours

Speakers: Deborah Livingston-Lowe & Carolyn Lilleyman

Date: Sunday April 3rd, 2022 @ 2pm ET

Description: To give a little insight into how skilled artisans use alpaca fibre in their textiles, Deborah and Carolyn will each give a virtual tour of their studio. Deborah chooses locally milled yarn as the starting material for her woven yardage and garments, and Carolyn uses fibre from her own alpacas in her felted items made on a FeltLOOM. This machine, which can produce sheets of felt up to 72” (180 cm) wide, enables Carolyn’s business to be economically viable.

Bio: Deborah Livingston-Lowe is a graduate of the Ontario College of Art and Design (OCAD), where she majored in woven textiles. Her early interest in handloom weaving and spinning grew into historic weaving, historical research, textile conservation and restoration. She has worked in many capacities in the discipline of historic textiles over the past 30 years, including researching the production and uses of hand-woven cloth in 19th century Ontario. Her work in textiles continues to be multidisciplinary as she works with designers to create textiles for fashion and interiors and with museums to reproduce textiles.

Bio: Carolyn Lilleyman and her husband Doug acquired their first alpacas as pets to entertain guests at the resort that they owned. The animals soon started taking priority over the guests and the couple became full-time farmers! They are the owners of both Kickin’ Back Alpaca Ranch, where they breed grey alpacas for high-quality fine fleece, and Laslyn Alpaca, a design and textile studio where alpaca fibre is transformed into a wide variety of garments and household items.

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