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Article: Finding Success at Fall and Winter Markets

by Michelle Just

While many of us are still hoping to hold onto summer for just a little while longer, fall brings great opportunities for the alpaca farmer! Farmer’s markets, craft fairs, and harvest festivals will soon lead into holiday bazaars, all of which offer a chance to extend your customer base, boost sales, and expand your brand. Fall and winter are undeniably the busiest seasons for vendors of alpaca products, but how can you make sure that your time and energy are well spent? Take the time now to strategize for fall and winter markets to ensure that your booth is as impressive as the products you sell. 

Start at the Very Beginning

Before you even think about your booth setup, make sure you attend the right events. Ask yourself what type of people will come to a particular market, if the location is easily accessible, and if the event is marketed or advertised. If possible, reach out to like-minded vendors who have worked the event in recent years to hear their perspective and gain valuable insight. While many markets will try to prevent vendors from selling similar products, it is always wise to check for yourself, as redundancy will lead to fewer sales. You want to make sure that your products “fit” within the overall scope of the market, but you won’t want to compete with a handful of similar vendors!

Regardless of how an event is externally marketed, it is your job to market your event on social media. Always share where you will be selling in advance, and be sure to take photos of your booth at the show to create buzz during and after the event! Don’t forget about repeat customers: make sure your website or social media pages are posted on any collateral you have in your booth so that new customers can find you again. Looking to start a mailing list? Put a sign-up sheet in your booth so customers can be notified about future events. 

If you sell a wide range of products, make sure you bring the right products for a particular market. You will likely find that certain products sell better in different locations. In most cases it is important to still offer a variety of products and something for every budget at each show. Be sure to bring smaller, more affordable options for customers who might not be ready to invest in higher price-point items. These more affordable products help introduce customers to your brand and hopefully bring them back for a larger purchase in the future.

We love to share photos of our booths on social media. It's a simple way to get the attention of potential customers who might be interested in perusing your products! We posted this photo during the most recent MAPACA show. Take note of the smaller items for sale on the table: T-Shirts, Bumper Stickers, Key Chains, Pins, and other affordable options! 

Build a Better Booth

Create a booth that is convenient for you and your customers. Ensure that your equipment is easy to set up and take down, and is versatile for different types of events. If you’re given the chance, always set up in high traffic areas, such as those close to the market entrance or on the end of an aisle. A canopy or tent is a great way to protect your products, but it can also make you stand out from the rest of the crowd, especially if it features your logo or information on what you’re selling. If your booth is dimly lit, consider bringing additional lighting to brighten the space and allow customers to better view your products.

Attract shoppers and help them move easily through your booth with a well-organized, user-friendly layout. Placing an inviting table or display towards the front of your booth will increase visibility, while also encouraging visitors to walk in and around it. The more time spent in your space, the greater the chance of a purchase being made! Check to make sure that there are no fixtures, products, or other hazards that could inhibit the flow of traffic.

You will appear less cluttered and disorganized if you keep your fixtures clean and products orderly. Consider using racks, hangers, or clear bins that are easily visible and accessible to shoppers. Fight the urge to put everything out at once. Instead, stay attentive to your displays as you make sales and reorganize them as needed to prevent your booth from looking empty. Pay attention to even minor details. Clear labeling is also key. Many shoppers will choose to walk away rather than ask about pricing, so make sure your customers understand what your products are and how much they cost by using tags and signs.

Our layouts may change depending on the location, but we've made sure our display stands and boxes are easy to move regardless of the situation. Even in an oblong space like this, we made sure there was enough space for customers to flow freely through our booth.

Showcase Your Products

Be sure to use the space in your booth creatively. Rather than simply setting products on a table, think about how you might use shelving, stands, and racks to utilize valuable vertical space and create visual interest. Put the most popular products out front to draw potential customers in to see what else you have available. Place more expensive or fragile items in areas where they are less likely to be handled. Keep less desirable items in view, but not front and center. How can this work in practice? Place your most eye-catching and popular products at eye level, your more expensive or delicate above, and slower moving products closer to ground level.

Just as your overall marketing should tell a story, so should your booth space. Make sure that your booth tells your story while connecting back to the alpacas. Your booth should emphasize your brand through your choice of fixtures, your signage and displays, and any decor you choose. If possible, provide a connection to the actual alpacas that contributed to the making of your products. This could be having them at the event, having photos of them in your booth, or bringing raw fiber for customers to touch. The better the experience, the more likely your visitors are to buy your products.

Alpaca products are not usually static objects, they are meant to be worn or used. For wearable alpaca garments, give customers the chance to experience products as they’re meant to be used. You may find that some customers decide to buy a hat only after they’ve seen it on themselves. Having a mirror in your booth will prevent shoppers from having to imagine what something might look on themselves. Showcasing products on mannequins is another worthwhile technique. Styrofoam heads are relatively inexpensive, and great deals can be found on mannequin busts at local “going out of business sales.”

Check out our stock of posters in the Marketing & Collateral section of our website if you're looking for ways to visually connect your products back to the alpacas!

End on a High Note

Even if a customer is interested in your products, they may decide that purchasing is not worth the hassle if the checkout process is unclear. Therefore, consider your checkout process. Make it clear where customers can go when they are done shopping and ready to make a purchase. If a line forms, have a place for shoppers to stand that does not crowd the booth. Also consider the forms of payment that you will accept. A cashbox will streamline transactions and make your operations look more professional. However,  if you only accept cash, you are eliminating a large portion of your customer base. Look into Square and other forms of credit card processors that can be used easily at your booth. After the transaction has been completed, make sure you have some kind of packing material (such as paper gift bags) available to secure your customer’s purchases. You can sneak in a business card while you’re at it!

It never hurts to be friendly and professional. Get to know event organizers, other vendors, and your customers. Events can get stressful, but customers are buying into a brand, not just the product itself. If you leave them with a good impression they will be more likely to return. Remember not to be too pushy either, or you may drive some interested customers away! 

As you think about what products to stock for the upcoming market seasons, remember to give some thought to how you will display them. Check out our previous blog post on market setups, featuring photos of your booths here!

We hope that these Business Resource Blog Posts have been helpful. Is there a topic you'd like us to cover in a future post? Write to us at


Our Stock Up Sale is officially live!


STOCK UP SALE EXTENDED TIL 11:59pm EST Monday September 2nd!

Free Shipping on Orders over $750


Orders over $500 receive Free Gift

1x Love Alpaca Hat Pin + 1x No Farms No Socks Bumper Sticker!

+ Select Product Discounts!

10% OFF when buying 10+ Dozen BackPaca's

Stock up on everyone's new favorite lightweight alpaca sock!

10% Our New Natural Knitter's Yarns!

10% OFF our LEAF Shawl

10% OFF Our New LEAF Shawl Poncho!


Product Spotlight: LEAF Shawl

by Michelle Just

An Elegant Shawl made from Mother Nature's Finest Alpaca Fiber


NEAFP’s LEAF Shawl is perhaps our most elegant product, a delicate knit shawl made of light fawn suri alpaca blend yarn. The shawl perfectly showcases suri fiber's natural luster and beautiful drape and is sure to add a romantic touch to any outfit.


The leaf pattern knit and suri yarn together have produced an amazingly intricate design all while being soft and luxurious to the touch. Generously sized at approximately 22" wide by 72" long, our LEAF Shawl promises to warm cold shoulders on chilly evenings while still being incredibly lightweight.

The perfect accessory for your next special occasion, this show stopping shawl is even more beautiful in person, where its delicate leaf pattern can truly shine.
Contents: 60% US SURI Alpaca, 40% Recycled NYLON




Introducing the NEW LEAF Shawl Poncho!

by Michelle Just


LEAF Shawl Poncho now available!


We started with our elegant LEAF knit and created a graceful asymmetrical poncho. The refined knit pattern made using soft alpaca has created a stunning poncho, absolutely beautiful in person! Generously sized and flattering for all body shapes, this pullover poncho will quickly become a timeless staple in any wardrobe.


Warm, soft, and feminine, this poncho adds a luxurious alpaca touch to any outfit.

Available in a natural Dark Fawn color.

Contents: 80% U.S. Alpaca, 20% Recycled Nylon

Care Instructions: Spot Clean By Hand, Using Cool Water & Mild Wool Detergent, Lay Flat to Dry



NEAFP's upcoming annual Summer Break



NEAFP will be taking our annual Summer Break from June 28th until July 7th.

All orders and support that come in during the week of 4th of July will begin heading out when we return.

We hope you all have a wonderful relaxing 4th of July and we look forward to hitting the ground running!

New All Natural Knitter's Yarn in Sportweight now available!


We are excited to release our newest addition, Sportweight, to our All Natural line of Knitter's Yarn!

This new All Natural Sport Weight Knitter's Yarn is made using U.S. Grown Alpaca blended with U.S. Merino Wool. It's soft, warm, and cozy and the lighter Sport Weight yarn allows for intricate and smooth knitting.

Skeins are 3.5 oz and approximately 300 yards each. This yarn is a 3 ply, giving it a nice hand, improved strength, and consistent making it perfect for a wide range of knitting projects.

Soft, smooth, and bright - a truly beautiful yarn!

Contents: 70% US Alpaca, 30% US Merino

Needle Size: 5-7

Don't Forget Dad!

by Michelle Just

Backpaca Jack is hanging up his backpack for the day to commandeer the grill, talk about how much easier crias have it these days, and tell some (not so) funny jokes: Meet Dadpaca Jack!

Happy Father's Day!

Today we raise a glass to all dads: new, old, grandads, stepdads, and everything in between! Thank you for all you've done and continue to do for the "crias" in your life!

By the way, we were so excited about Father's Day we might have also included a Sneak Peek of our latest product. Stay tuned for the release of The Fat Alpaca Coaster!



June's NEAFP Note is here!



June's NEAFP Note is officially available, read it here:

Topics Include: Alpaca off to the Summer Races, Gentle Touch: A New Look, DK Yarn, Navy and Pink, AOA Fiber Extravaganza, Fiber U, 10th Annual Shearing Competition, Sorting Status, and our upcoming annual Summer Break!


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Our *NEW* DK Knitter's Yarn is now available in FAWN!

by Michelle Just

We've added Fawn DK to our lineup of natural yarns!

Earlier this year we announced the release of our new DK Knitter's Yarn, featuring an all-natural blend of fiber. We're excited to introduce the same 70% Alpaca, 30% Merino blend now in Fawn!


This new All Natural DK Weight Knitter's Yarn is made using U.S. Grown Alpaca blended with U.S. Merino Wool. It's soft, warm, and cozy and the DK weight is fast knitting and perfect for a wide range of patterns.

Skeins are 3.5 oz and approximately 185 yards each. This yarn is a 2 ply, giving it nice hand and improved strength for a wide variety of projects.

Soft, smooth, and bright - a truly beautiful yarn!

Contents: 70% US Alpaca, 30% US Merino

Needle Size: 9-10

p.s. Can't get enough of our new All Natural DK Knitter's Yarn? Check out our DK Weight Unicorn Yarns available now as part of our Limited Small Batch category!

Join NEAFP at the AOA Fiber Extravaganza!

by Michelle Just

NEAFP is heading to the AOA Fiber Extravaganza!

In just a few short weeks, NEAFP will be heading to Nashville, Tennessee in for the AOA’s Natural Fiber Extravaganza. Held from July 19th through the 21st, the Natural Fiber Extravaganza is a celebration of all things alpaca fiber. Join other alpaca farmers for a weekend of fleece and fiber art shows, workshops and seminars, and even alpaca yoga!

A number of competitions will take place throughout the weekend, including a spin-off, fiber arts competition, student design competition, and alpaca photo contest. Of course, AOA’s International Fleece Show, the largest Alpaca Fleece show in the northern hemisphere, is not to be missed. Looking to bolster your alpaca-related skills or knowledge? Exciting workshops will allow for hands-on experience in skills such as spinning, felting, and dyeing, while seminars throughout the weekend promise to educate on a range of topics ranging from marketing to sustainable fashion.

NEAFP will be one of many vendors available to peruse, so come place your order for U.S. alpaca products and check out some of our exciting new items like our Alpaca T-shirts! Don’t forget to register on the AOA website for the Carbon Farming Seminar led by NEAFP’s own Chris Riley. Chris recently organized a carbon farming group of local alpaca farms, federal, state and local agriculture organizations to study carbon farming and its effect on the environment. Chris is excited to share what he has learned about sustainability and the intersection between carbon farming and alpaca farms on Sunday, July 21st.

We hope to see you there!

NEW Downloadable Content: Happy Mother's Day! Alpaca Mothers & Crias

by Michelle Just

Hoping to share this graphic on social media?
Find it here on Facebook, or download a full-size, printer-friendly version at the bottom of this article!


Just in time for Mother's Day! A Shareable graphic about Alpaca moms and their crias!

Check out our other downloadable graphics in previous blog posts:

1.  The Camelidae Family

2.  4 Common Alpaca Myths

3.  Earth Day: The Sustainable Alpaca

Feel free to share it on your social media page or print it and use it at your next farmer's market as an educational resource.

Download the printer-friendly file here!

Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to

May NEAFP Note is here, Happy Mother's Day!


Our May 2019 NEAFP Note newsletter is officially out!

In this NEAFP Note:

  • Happy Mother's Day
  • Article: Brand Identity
  • New Unicorn Yarn Colorway
  • New limited T-Shirt Colorway
  • RSVP for Parade of Champions
  • RSVP for 10th Annual Shearing Competition

Read it in full here:

New limited Love Alpaca Mandala T-Shirt color way available now!


Our 2nd round of Love Alpaca Mandala T-Shirts are finished and ready to ship now.

Along with a restock in our existing color ways we also produced a limited run of the Navy Shirts w/ Pink graphics and they came out beautiful!

Although it's been raining for about a month straight here in our neck of the woods, we channeled the warmer months to put together this cute Outfit of the Day!

Celebrating Mother's Day early with a new Unicorn Yarn Colorway


Happy Mother's Day!

We wanted to celebrate a little early to share our latest colorway of Unicorn Yarn.

Inspired by all of our Mother's unconditional love, Forget Me Not is hand-painted on our latest all natural DK Weight Knitter's Yarn.

Available now as part of our Limited Small Batch category!


Article: Brand Identity & Your Local Community

by Michelle Just

Once shearing is behind you, and you’ve taken some time to breathe, you may find it worthwhile to review your branding strategy for the coming year.

As we’ve discussed before, it is important to understand and use different branding strategies to achieve success. From choosing and photographing your products, to exploring different avenues of social media marketing, now is the time to reflect on the messages you hope to communicate to your potential customers. Most farms could not be successful without patronage by their local community members, who look to them for alpaca products, educational information and opportunities to engage with the animals. The way that you brand yourself can make you a more visible authority on all things alpaca, driving your influence in your local community.

Educate and Communicate

Rather than considering yourself solely an alpaca farmer that sells alpaca products, envision your farm as an important community resource. If possible, take on a leadership mentality and become the local authority on alpacas and alpaca products. Put extra effort into educating your customers so that they know to return to you with further questions about alpacas. They will appreciate the information, and will likely associate your knowledge with higher quality products. Customers are more likely to invest in your brand if it is a cause that they support or trust, so take the time to communicate with potential customers transparently.

How can you put this into practice? A good example is the recent interest in “pet” alpacas. It is wise to have educational material posted at booths and farms to dispel rumors or myths in the first place. However, once you receive such an inquiry, rather than alienating the potential customer who is interested in a “pet” alpaca, invite them to visit your farm and explain how alpacas operate within a herd. You can invite this person to return to visit your happy herd in the future, while (hopefully) discouraging them from acquiring one as a pet.  

Did you miss our Downloadable Poster on Alpaca Myths? Head here to download a full-size version to post at your farm store!

Get Involved

In addition to becoming an educational resource, strive to become an active member of your local community. Don’t forget that your farm itself can be an important community space, as many alpaca farms have begun offering their site as an event space for fitness activities like yoga and private events like weddings. Consider reaching out to local portrait photographers to see if they’d be interested in using your property as a shoot location! While you may already participate local market events, think about other ways to increase your brand recognition through community engagement. Go to local events with alpacas, even out of market season, and remember to keep your social media active!

Here are some other ways to get involved:

-Donate a product to a local charity auction/raffle
-Sponsor a youth sports league
-Volunteer at a local event
-Visit schools, hospitals, or retirement communities
-Partner with another organization for a special project

Creating Memorable Branding Elements

Creating memorable branding elements can raise greater value or equity in your brand, by raising recognition among your customers and local community. Your brand name, logo, any slogans you may use are just a few examples of branding elements. These elements should be unique enough to set you apart from your competition, while being relevant to your role as an alpaca farmer and producer of alpaca goods.

Your brand name, in this case your farm or farm business name, should ideally be easy to pronounce and spell, and unique but not over the top. It should resonate with potential customers and signal to them who you are and what you do.

If you’re in the process of branding your farm many individuals take into consideration their name, their location, and the qualities of their alpacas in creating a name for themselves.

logo is an important tool to use across your marketing collateral: on business cards, websites, labels, and market booths, as a form of identification. Like your brand name, your logo should tell your story to the public. It should be simple, yet also relevant and communicate information about your brand. Consider also the color of your design elements, which can change the overall feeling of your brand.

For this article, we came up with a fictional Alpaca Farm to give an example of one route to take:

Time to Start Somewhere

Sure, it seems like a lot to take in, but there’s no better time to begin considering your brand! Start small by filling out a branding worksheet, many of which can be found online. Good Egg Marketing’s Brand Identity Worksheet is a great example of a worksheet designed to help you gain valuable insight about your brand.

We hope that these Business Resource Blog Posts have been helpful. Is there a topic you'd like us to cover in a future post? Write to us at


NEW Downloadable Content: Earth Day - The Sustainable Alpaca

by Michelle Just

Hoping to share this graphic on social media?
Find it here on Facebook, or download a full-size, printer-friendly version at the bottom of this article!


In the spirit of Earth Day, we're highlighting how alpacas are ecologically friendly in our newest downloadable, sharable graphic.

Check out our other downloadable graphics in previous blog posts:

1.  The Camelidae Family

2.  4 Common Alpaca Myths

Feel free to share it on your social media page or print it and use it at your next farmer's market as an educational resource.

Download the printer-friendly file here!

Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to

NEW Downloadable Content: Alpaca Myths!

by Michelle Just

Hoping to share this graphic on social media?
Find it here on Facebook, or download a full-size, printer-friendly version at the bottom of this article!


We’re following up our last graphic on the the Camelidae Family with a new downloadable, sharable graphic on Alpaca Myths. This graphic combines "4 Common Myths About Alpacas" into one handy graphic to help dispel misconceptions about our favorite animals!

Feel free to share it on your social media page or print it and use it at your next farmer's market as an educational resource.


Download the printer-friendly file here!

Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to

Downloadable Content for Alpaca Farms and More!

by Michelle Just


Hoping to share this graphic on social media? Find it here on Facebook, or download a full-size, printer-friendly version at the bottom of this article!


We’re often asked whether alpaca farmers can use our photos and descriptions of NEAFP products on their personal pages. The answer is always a resounding YES! Part of our job is to make it easier for you, the alpaca farmer, to successfully run the fiber side of your business.

We know you’re busy tending your herd, taking inventory of your products, and arranging your next market, so it might not always be easy to photograph products or create business collateral. In addition to creating our new Marketing & Collateral section of the website (which can be viewed when signed into your shopping account) we have some exciting things in store for 2019.

Keep your eyes peeled for updated product photography, continued product spotlights, and printable posters.

Our educational “Alpacas & The Camelidae Family” Poster is free for you to print and post at your farm or in your shop!

Download the printer-friendly file here!

New Product: Alpaca Mocks Now Available!

by Michelle Just

Introducing Alpaca Mocks...

... Just in time for Spring!

After the overwhelming success of our BACKPACA Sock, we knew our next sock needed to be another all-season sock that is as versatile as you are! Rather than reinventing the wheel we took inspiration from our Alpaca Glittens to create a truly transformative sock: the Mock!

Our Alpaca Mocks feature a ribbed knit along the top of the foot and up the calf and Terry loop construction along the sole of the foot provides cushion, padding, and comfort where it's most needed. Our new open toe design allows each toe to rest comfortably with support, while maximizing breathability. An adjustable toe flap can be used for added warmth or removed for easy access during your favorite activities.

Perfect your pedi! You’ll be nice and warm in your Mocks. As an added bonus - your toes will stay separated for easy polishing!

Mocks are perfect for those unpredictable spring days, allowing you to keep your feet covered in the cool mornings, and let them free to feel the warmth of the sun in the afternoon. Flip flop wearer all year? Add the perfect cushion without sacrificing your signature style.

Contents: 78% U.S. Alpaca, 20% Nylon, and 2% Lycra.

Care Instructions: See Label

Fiber Requirement: 0.6 lb Prime

Suggested Retail Value: $38.00

Get yours just in time for April Fool’s Day!




Article: Alpacas are STILL Seriously Trending!

by Michelle Just

Although it might seem like yesterday, it has been almost two years since our article “Alpacas are SERIOUSLY Trending!” If you paid any attention to social media, local events, or mainstream news, you probably realized that alpacas are no passing fad-- they continue to captivate audiences across media platforms.

If you didn’t take our advice then, it’s not too late! Alpacas are more popular than ever and as an alpaca farmer, you are in the perfect position to take advantage of the ongoing buzz!

From clothing for all ages, to artwork, office supplies, and toys, alpacas are a hot commodity.


Roses, chocolates, and… an alpaca-gram? A Peruvian hotel garnered international attention when it advertised that Panchita, an adorable cria, would be sending out a select number of personalized “alpaca-grams” on Valentine’s Day. Increasingly, alpacas have become linked to romance and romantic gestures. Celebrity Hilary Duff shared her beloved Valentine’s gift with social media: an alpaca named Ivan, and soon received over 240,000 likes on Instagram.

So maybe you’ve brought your alpacas to a market event, but a wedding? Yes, alpaca weddings are still all the rage. Whether you simply offer use of your farm as a backdrop for photography or find ways to involve your animals in the big day, 2019 is a great time to explore opportunities in the wedding and event planning business. Not only could this be a great revenue stream, it's also a creative way to bring your farm more exposure, and boost sales for your fiber products!


#weddinggoals: Check out more gorgeous photos of Danika Hoo-Fatt's Big Day


Perhaps you're unlucky in love... No worries! Alpacas have also made an appearance outside of the wedding industry. Rosebud Alpacas in South Molton, Devon, England went viral for offering alpaca yoga classes, in addition to alpaca walking, alpaca picnics, camping, alpaca art and photography sessions, and alpaca meditation. Alpaca yoga is also popular on this side of the pond. Our friends at Grist Mill Farm Alpacas and Island Alpaca Co. have tried out yoga in the barnyard.

Here is a video of what appears to be a widely successful Alpaca yoga event at 313 Farms.

Alpaca Yoga from Layer Video Imagery on Vimeo.


At the recent AOA National Alpaca Show in Denver, visitors could enjoy both alpaca yoga classes and an alpaca selfie booth! Apparently, the selfie booth at the show was so popular in recent years that it wrapped around the building! The more photo-ops you have on your farm, the more potential social media exposure you'll get!


(Speaking of selfie booths, come to our booth at the next show and take a photo with Backpaca Jack!)

Your Turn!

So, how can you easily capitalize on the overwhelming popularity of the alpacas online?

If you haven’t jumped on the alpaca social media marketing train, then it is time to consider starting both a Facebook and Instagram page for your farm.

(Looking for inspiration? Check out Good Karma Ranch Alpacas, River Hill Ranch, and Borgstein Alpacas just to name a few! All three post great content often in the form of photos or videos, stay active with their followers, and are smart about tagging content!)

Although they may seem to serve the same purpose, Facebook and Instagram attract two different markets, with some overlap. Facebook's interactivity attracts a slightly older demographic, while Instagram is much more popular with the younger crowd. A Facebook page is a great place to begin, but venturing onto Instagram can bring in an entirely new market of influencers who are more than willing to share your content across the platform.

The key to success on Instagram is not only the strength of your content, but how you share it using hashtags. These hashtags allow for users to find material relevant to their interests. We’ve created a handy cheat sheet to get you started!  Next time you share a photo of an alpaca, a product, your farm, or a day in the life, think about adding some of these hashtags to boost your search and get more views! 

We hope that these Business Resource Blog Posts have been helpful. Is there a topic you'd like us to cover in a future post? Write to us at