Le Tour, c’est ici

Probably not correct grammatically, but you get my drift, I’m sure: the 100th Tour De France starts tonight Aus time,and with it the annual Tour De Fleece also begins.

As I’ve done for the last several years, I will be joining thousands of spinners world wide, in what is effectively a giant spinalong.

Allow me to elucidate.

For every day that Le Tour rides, I and other members of my team [ Team TARDIS on Ravelry ] will endeavour to get in at least 10 minutes, but hopefully much more, of hand spinning. As we watch those bicycle wheels being propelled all over the picturesque French countrycide, WE will be propelling our wheels … well … nowhere actually. They’ll mostly be staying wherever they currently are.

As I’ll be down in Melbourne tonight for a dance event and won’t be getting back until around 3am, I have done my prep work this morning.

First I removed the white cashmere/mohair that I’ve been working on sporadically since the Goat Show back in April.

Then I fished out the braid of Bendi Bingo colourway from Ewe Give Me The Knits, and the bobbin that was one of the two projects I started during last year’s Tour.


I’ve decided that there’s enough yardage on the existing bobbin, so I’m starting a new one for this year’s Tour with the probably vain hope of spinning enough to match the existing bobbin for what will eventually be a 2 ply yarn.

So I started the new bobbin

and spent more time repairing breaks and losing what I’d just spun, than actually moving forward. You see, if the yarn gets too fine / hasn’t enough twist to hold together, you don’t just lose the bit currently in your hand but also what is attempting to wind itself onto the bobbin. And it doesn’t just happen once.


Compare it to those first wobbles when you get back on the bike after a hiatus.

Even though I was spinning the cashmere only four days ago, this fibre handles differently and I needed to get my hand in


minimal forward progress


but at least I’m in the race




le mailot vert

It’s like that thing with buses.

You all know how it goes … you wait forever and then five come along one after the other.

That’s what July is like.

There’s the Wool & Sheep Show in Bendigo.

Two weeks later there’s the huge Quilt & Craft show at Jeff’s Shed

and if that’s not enough to cause your brain to end up somewhere in the vicinity of your knees:

there’s also the TDF:

the Tour De France Knit A Long

and its sister event the Tour De Fleece

It’s a Ravelry thing …

We get ourselves organised into teams and knit like crazy every day that the Tour rides.

For me, this was the year of the sprints.

In the three weeks Le Tour, I finished

two berets,

a pair of very steampunk black lace  spats,

a pair of legwarmers that I designed myself [ Bendigo Classic 8ply brick red ]

two beanies – a Melbourne storm [Rugby ] one for The Boy, but modelled here by The Girl

Rare Yarns Cocoon [ silk/alpaca/merino – and possibly the lushest footy beanie ever but it happens to be the only yarn in the perfect shade ]

and one for Pete-formerly-next-door [ hereinafter referred to as PND ]

in BWM Luxury 8ply

modelled by David

a pair of wristwarmers


two – that’s TWO people –  lace shawls

in ten days

the burgundy one is a Kiri for the Girl in Koigu KPPPM that I won a few years ago as a blog prize from the lovely RoseRed

I started it on the afternoon of July 14th so that I’d have something small and portable to take to the Ravellry WoolBaa Dinner that night.

It was finished on the 19th and I cast on for the navy one on the 20th

# 2 is about a quarter  the size of the burgundy one – but just as many stitches – in laceweight [2ply] baby peruvian alpaca [ Misti Alpaca Lace ] on 3.75mm needles.

This one was cast off, soaked, and blocked just  as the guys were approaching Le Champs Elysee.

and if I ever EVER mention the intention of knitting in navy blue lace weight AT NIGHT …

can someone please shoot me ?