Northern California Angora Guild

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Angora Coop Size - Final Words

Randy Shumaker, the general show superintendent, has made the final decision on the convention coop size: 22 x 25. To help those who are going to the convention for the first time, here are some relevant photos:

This set of wire bottoms were fitted for 21 x 21 coops. A middle section is added to make 22 x 25 size. The middle section is flat on the ground in this picture.

The middle section is propped up to be the same height as the two side pieces.

Here is a picture of a French Angora in the convention coop. At the left lower corner, there is a card showing the class of the rabbit and exhibitor's name. The number "10" is the coop number that is to be written into the rabbit's right ear as FA10. The convention judge reads out the coop number from the right ear when placing. This French Angora is the BOB in the 2008 ARBA convention in Louisville.

This is a picture of two English Angora in the "holding coop" behind the judge's table. The holding coop is essentially the same as the coop that the rabbits stay during the convention. This picture is posted because it gives a clear view of the coops and how they are stacked. The left English Angora is the BOB and the other is the BOSV in the 2007 ARBA convention in Grand Rapids.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Carol's Fingerless Gloves

I love the ones made from natural colored American Fuzzy Lop plied with brown alpaca. These are my "signature" gloves.

See how many color and yarn combinations in these gloves.

These are made from dyed handspun angora and handspun camel yarns.

Here is a photo of just the purple gloves, our most popular color.

Carol G. says,

"Betty asked me over a year ago if I could make angora gloves. While I imagined detailed patterns with fine yarn, I decided that fingerless gloves were 1) easier and 2) more popular for our fiber business. The great thing about fingerless mitts is that they use small amounts of yarn, including "leftovers" from bigger projects. I have adapted several patterns but my favorite uses a knit 2 purl 1 rib and will fit a wide range of hand sizes. I also have lots of fun with colors as you can see!

Most of my mitts are made from handspun angora or fuzzy lop yarn with wool cuffs so the fit at the wrists is snug. Look at the pretty brown yarn cuffs--that is camel yarn that Betty spun. Its very soft and pretty.

I will have some more photos to share later on."

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Speedy And The Knitted Bunny

Our wonderful NCAG newsletter editor Kathy is a good knitter and a very soft heart person. She rescues bunnies, mixed breed and all.

She sends this picture and says,

"I knitted this blanket and bunny for my friend's baby. The bunny pattern is free from Knitting Daily. The toy bunny, that is; they broke the mold when they made our gal Speedy. The cushion, though fuzzy like angora, is husky."

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Train Station

San Jose train station.

Amtrak stops here.

Local trains provide an option for riders to commute to and from San Francisco.

Inside of the train station is quite nice and roomy.

The train platforms are well protected.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Pergola In The Yard

Betty says,

"We have lived in our house, purchased brand new, for 30 years. Hubby did most of the work in the yard with me as a helper. Most of the yard has been landscaped.

A few years ago, a huge walnut tree just outside our family room died and was cut down; it was an very old tree that existed before our house was built. The spot remained bare.

Recently hubby decided that he would build a pergola structure for climbing plants. When he bought home two small bougainvilleas, things got moving. After working on it for weeks, the pergola was done, he planted the bougainvilleas and lavenders, then he put in the finish touch by adding on a whole pickup full of barks on the ground.

It's now so nice to see such a pretty spot from our family room."

Monday, October 19, 2009

Convention Wire Bottoms

Betty says,

"ARBA convention is coming up in less than two weeks, we are all very excited. I am the Angora chairperson; many of my fellow exhibitors asked me to give them the coop size and samples of wire bottoms.

After contacting the convention personnel many times, the information available as of Sunday is that all four breeds of Angora would get large coop, 22" x 25". However, it is not yet a final decision. Even if the decision is made, it is still subject to change on the day of the show, and I had experienced that in previous conventions many times.

Now to the wire bottoms. I am posting photos of two styles.

This set is very simple; two piece each bend on three sides, rises either one or two inches from the floor. The doors of the coops are narrow and low, the wire bottoms are cut into two pieces to be joined in the middle by zip tie, fold and put into the coop then unfold.

This style is simple, not much work at the convention but it takes up a lot of space in your car or worse if you fly. I bought more than ten sets of this style in the 2002 convention then found it impossible to fly with after the initial purchase. This particular set fits medium 21" x 21" coops.

Here is a different style. I designed it when I encountered the issues of flying and varying coop sizes.

In 2004, the convention committee decided to give all Angora the extra large coops of 21"x 30". Obviously the sets I bought in 2002 were 9 inches too short. So I made these smaller pieces to make up the difference. The four sides are four "ears" that could stand up or go flat. In storage, many pieces can be tied together and they are compact enough to be put into my suitcase, though still very heavy. When I get to the convention, I would use zip ties to tighten the four corners and the piece stands up 2 inches from the floor. This style of wire bottoms would take a long time to get all pieces ready to be put into the coops for rabbits to sit on. It is not unusual to take 3, 4 or even 5 hours to get all the coops ready for my rabbits even with helps from friends.

If there are more convention information or news, I will post on our blog again. "