Wednesday, July 28, 2010
I started spinning in January of 2009 and quickly learned that not only was spinning a hobby, but it could also be coordinated with sporting events such as the Olympics and the Tour de France, turning me from a crazed fiber addict, into an Elite Athlete without ever leaving my spinning chair!
The event "Tour de Fleece" is coordinated with the bicycling competition "Tour de France" and runs very similarly to the actual event: we spin as their wheels spin, we rest on the days the riders rest, and we challenge our spinning skills on the days of the riders more challenging ascents. There are teams and events, tears, sweating, and lots of competition!
This year 2 of my favorite Ravelry users (Craftypuppylover and SavethePlanKnit) and I formed our own team "Team SavetheBohoPuppies", in which we gathered a total of 40 teammates of all different spinning skill and commitment levels. It was a long 23 days of spinning, and many of us succeeded in making a dent in our fiber stashes.
Me personally, well, somehow I always manage to go on vacation during the Tour de Fleece, challenging my determination to spin, and patience to wait until we return home to really get some spinning done. This year we were in Yosemite National Park and I promised my husband that I wouldn't try to fit my spinning wheel in with all of our gear. BUT- I did bring a drop spindle so my spinning could be documented throughout the trip and I could still feel like part of the team. I was gone for the first 10 days of the tour, nearly half, and only managed to spin one yarn- so I was left with a lot of ground to cover when I returned home. I think I managed pretty well.
When we returned from Yosemite I devoted as much time as I could to my spinning wheel. I planted it firmly in the middle of our living room, and I don't think I sat on the couch once in the 13 days left of the tour when I got home. I gathered together fiber from some of my favorite Etsy shop owners: Jazzturtle, LushMommy, AtomicBlue, CraftyPuppyLover, Extreme Spinning, Woolyhands, and Silver Sun Alpacas and got to work. I spun 2-plies and 3-plies, corespun and autowrapped and even surprised myself at how much I got spun.
In the end, in a 23 day tour of not resting on rest days I managed to spin:
3351 yards and then plied 948 yards for a total of 4299 yards- or 2.44 miles
46.5 hours- almost 2 full days
My yarns weigh a total of 89 oz- or 5.56 pounds
My longest and heaviest yarn was a 349 yard 3-ply that weighs 9 oz.
I think it's time for a break from spinning and some time for knitting!