Cycling enthusiast or not, many people will be aware of the Tour de France in the Summer months. Especially the festive start in Utrecht this year, the Grand Départ, has brought many Dutch people to active cheering. What is less known is that at the same time with the Tour de France another international event takes place: The Tour de Fleece, abbreviated TdF.
What is the Tour de Fleece?
The idea is simple, for the duration of the Tour de France spinners from all over the world get together both online and offline to spin wool and other fibers into yarn. Cyclists have their wheels spinning in the round and we let our spinning wheels and spindles spin. It is actually more of a “Spin-Along” then a competition in which experiences and results can be shared. There are no hard and fast rules, the main thing is to challenge yourself and have fun!
Just like the Tour de France participants of the Tour de Fleece are organized into teams. There are several “official” teams that stay connected through the Tour de Fleece group on Ravelry. There are also a lot of “wildcard” teams that share experiences and progress in other groups. I myself join Team Karma, from the Karma Swap the Dutch group on Ravelry.
For me, this was the first time to join the TdF, which of course makes it extra special. I have not set myself targets of the type of “spinning x meters” or trying out specific techniques. That’s largely because spinning is for me pure hobby. Knitting and crochet I usually do for my own designs and patterns. So if I want to do something different, which is also finished fairly quickly, then I go spin myself some yarn. Making yarn for me is much faster than knitting it!
During this TdF I have therefore only set the target to just spin than usual and enjoy the social element. Not just online but also offline. For Team Karma we got together for a kick-off spin-in in the backyard of one of the ladies. It was very relaxing and fun!
The photos show what I’ve made during this Tour de Fleece. A lot less than other folks, but I sure had fun. Next year I’m certain to participate again!