Tour de Fleece 2014

As you may know the Tour de France has kicked off four days ago, and with it, the Tour de Fleece. I’m always one with big plans, but this year I’ve gone about it differently. In this last year I’ve gotten used to my new Bliss spinning wheel and I’ve noticed my spinning is becoming more and more even.  They say a bad workman blames his tools, but I strongly disagree. The tools are more important. They define everything. This wheel has shown me that it’s not simply skill that determines whether or not you spin a gossamer weight yarn, it’s also the tool and the fiber that either works with or against you. As for complaints, I have but one. The bobbins. They are tiny. Well I guess they’re not tiny at all, I’m just hard to please and I like to fit everything on there (which is why I made the 5ply manx loaghtan yarn on the Rotterdam instead of the Bliss).I’m sorry for the phone quality. I took these pictures with my phone so I could put them on my instagram, and I thought I might as well use them for the blog. It’s a recap of the past few days anyway, but I promise to take better pictures in the future 😛 What I love about turkish spindles (and I’ve mentioned this before) is that you can, if you wind them on carefully, make a 2 ply with one ball. This can come in very handy in case one of your balls runs out first and you don’t want to cut the yarn and throw away the ‘waste’. I plied the two together, and when the first one ran out, I took the ‘other end’ from the ball that was left and plied the rest back to itself. It’s a 2 ply and you can’t see the difference. It only shows on the first picture above where you can see the ‘loop’.The day before the Tour I decided to prep some of the fleece. I’m trying the (what I call) ‘open hand technique’. It’s something I learned from the “Spin to weave” books and dvd, and it’s a method of spinning that puts much less strain on your tendons and wrists. It also helps you to spin yarn at a much faster rate and makes for a yarn that is more even. When I spin, I don’t like to be interrupted. I like the flow of the spinning and stopping to prep a bit of fiber is not something that I enjoy. These faux lags make sure I get the effect I want (by allowing for the colors to stay together, but still creating a soft gradient via a partial barberpole where the colors change). I get to spin an entire 100 grams in one go, if I don’t get interrupted by something else (phone, life, cats you name it).Much of the spinning was done while watching the match between the Netherlands and Costa Rica, so the spinning is a bit irregular. Not that I mind though, it was too exciting and stressful to watch without having something in my hands.I do really like combination of colors! It’s such a cheerful bobbin 🙂I’m trying only to spin on the wheel so I can get better and faster at spinning even yarns, but I really fell in love with the cute, tiny little Turkish spindles and so I decided to order another one in a smaller size. Meet Kolibrie. It’s such a cute little spindle! I’m going to spin some cashmere/ silk blend on it, but this will have to wait. I’m going to spin last years’ tdf stash first, when I run out.I actually wanted to post this post yesterday, but I didn’t have time to finish my post. I’ll have another update soon 🙂

2 thoughts on “Tour de Fleece 2014

  1. Such colorful little gems you have on your bobbins! I’m in awe of your spinning ability – everything’s so beautifully even whether you’re spinning with a spindle or a wheel.

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