Moutons Sur Velos

Posted in planning, spinning by tchemgrrl on July 2, 2010

Hmm. Tour de Fleece.

So the Tour de Fleece is similar to the Knitting Olympics, Iknitarod, and any other craft/sport mashup that might be out there (Weaving Ironman? World Cup O’ Tatting?). The idea is that you spin every day that the Tour de France is happening, including resting on the days the riders *don’t* ride, with an end goal of doing something that is new and exciting to you as a spinner. Some people take on an additional challenge on the days that the riders are on the mountain stages.

My thoroughly un-joining self really enjoyed reading all the posts during last summer’s tour. It’s fun to see page after page of interesting spinning which was challenging to the spinner. I’ve been losing a bit of that feeling with knitting–it’s all linear; and with enough time and patience I can do any of it. But there are things in spinning that I’m just not capable of doing–the movements are more subtle and complex, harder to explain, sometimes impossible to do in a step-by-step way. So I’m still always interested to hear people talk about spinning.

In addition to simply looking forward to seeing everyone else’s stuff, I’ve been thinking a bit about joining in myself and trying some things that are challenging to me.

-I had a really fun start with my charkha, but something about its movement was making me queasy in the first trimester of my pregnancy (other sources of quease during that phase: eating, breathing, walking at a moderate speed, the knowledge that eggs even *existed*.) Now that I’m well over that, I’d like to get back to it. I have about 3/4 ounce of cashmere and a few ounces of natural-colored organic cotton going on the charkha, and my first goal is to have those completely spun up. I also have many balls of cotton singles, and it is time to do something about them besides admire them.

-I also have some fiber I got last week from a local yarn shop which I am spinning up for shop samples. I know what I want to do with them, and the challenge for me here will be consistency and speed. I’d like to see how quickly I can spin up the 8 ounces of fiber while still doing a job I’m proud of.

-One crazy Tour de Fleece team has as its goal to spin a mile of yarn in a 24-hour period at least once during the Tour–that’s about 1800 yards. I highly doubt I can manage that, but I think I will pick a pleasant Sunday in which I will simply spin as much as I possibly can, just to see what kind of yardage I end up with. It might be a good time to start in on the yarn for J’s sweater, for which I have done nothing but a small sample. I’d need to do a bit more sampling first, but it’s a good chance to sit and get lots of one thing done.

-My last challenge? I have been feeling like a total slacker lately, spending way too much time at the computer. Some of this is leftover inertia from the aforementioned first trimester, but I’ve been feeling great lately so there’s really no excuse. I’ve been looking at my older knitting projects, amazed at just how much I was getting *done*. And a lot of that had to do with simply sitting down and doing the thing. So once again, my goal is not so much to attain a certain yardage as it is to simply make spinning a priority for my non-essentials time. How much can I spin in 3.5 weeks, anyhow? This seems as good a way as any to find out. Goodness knows I won’t run out of fiber.

So those are my goals. I don’t think I’m joining any team or making it official, I’ll just be checking in now and then and showing my progress.



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