Tour de Fleece 2021

Tour de Fleece 2021 starts June 26, 2021. Like, tomorrow. This year, I’ve decided to focus on finishing my supported spinning works in progress (WIPs).

Unfortunately, this required inventorying my WIPs.

The results are not pretty.

… I take it back. My WIPs are positively beautiful. But I had no idea I had six. SIX. Six WIPs. Just for supported spinning. There’s also a EEW6 WIP, but we’re not talking about that.

(OK, technically I have seven supported spinning WIPs. But the Tour de Fleece spin from last year doesn’t count.)

Here then, in order of priority, are my supported spinning WIPs slated for TdF this year. The main objective is to finish spinning; plying would be great, if/as time allows.

One: What remains of a 4 oz braid of merino / tussah silk blend, from Hobbledehoy Fibers.

WIP Priority 1: A Merino-Silk Hobbledehoy Braid
WIP Priority 1: A Merino-Silk Hobbledehoy Braid

I literally have less than one ounce of fiber still to spin. Don’t judge! Once I finish spinning, I will probably chain ply the singles yarns using Evie, my EEW6 e-spinner. I’m still practicing for the aforementioned TdF 2020 project!

Two: One of my precious Gourmet Stash punis hoards. Also less than an ounce to spin. No idea what the fiber blend is.

WIP Priority 2: Vintage Gourmet Stash Punis
WIP Priority 2: Vintage Gourmet Stash Punis

Wrapping a pretty turtle on a Turkish spindle is fun and meditative but SO slow. I will probably find a regular supported spindle to push through the rest of these punis. Maybe I will ply them with the two singles from WIP Number Three, for a dominantly white yarn with flecks of pink.

Three: A wool-silk blend from the vendor formerly known as Phoenix Farm Fiber. (Now Stringtown Fiber, apparently.) I think the wool is romedale/CVM, but that’s a guess. And it probably started as 4 ounces. And I believe the sheep’s name was “Big D” because it cracked me up. Clearly I need to improve my habits around keeping track of fiber information!

WIP Priority 3: Romedale / CVM - Silk Blend
WIP Priority 3: Romedale / CVM – Silk Blend

There’s over two ounces of fiber left. No real plans yet for plying, once I finish the spin. If I make a three ply with two singles of this one, and one single of Number Two, then I will still have a fair amount of mostly-white fiber left.

(Confession time. I have never plyed two different fibers before. All my yarns were created from singles from the same fiber.)

Four: my Allons-y In Search Of merino-silk blend two-ply fractal spin.

WIP Priority 4: Allons-y Fractal Spin
WIP Priority 4: Allons-y Fractal Spin

Remember the fractal spinalong a while back? This was the gorgeous braid I was afraid to use while learning. I finally started it, and it has been just as dreamy to spin as I expected. I kinda feel bad prioritizing this one as “Four”, because it is my current WIP (pre-TDF). But rather than continuing to work on it, I’m putting it on hold to finish other things. Hmmmm.

Five: These beautifully colored merino rolags from Cat and Sparrow, which perfectly match my some of my favorite supported spindles.

WIP Priority Five: Beautiful Rolags ... A Lot of Them!
WIP Priority Five: Beautiful Rolags … A Lot of Them!

Thing is, there is over 100 grams / 3.5 oz of rolags left to go, and like the Turkish turtle wrap, these colors beg for a beautiful, thoughtful, meditative wrapping approach. Which means a s…l…o…w… approach. I’ve been chain plying this one, in order to preserve the color repeats, using a coordinating Turkish spindle. Which makes everything even slower. This is a labor of love … and I honestly don’t know if I will even a) get to it or b) finish it by July 18th, the official end of TdF. (Well. Last year had TWO scheduled tours, and I didn’t finish my spin until three weeks after the second one ended!)

Six: A black singles to match this spin from my small hoard of Gourmet Stash punis.

WIP Priority Six: A Black Singles to Ply With
WIP Priority Six: A Black Singles to Ply With

I need something black for a second singles, and the only black in my stash is actually a dark brown merino-alpaca blend. Nowhere near worthy of these vintage Gourmet Stash punis. And I am currently disinclined to purchase new fiber, just for the sake of finishing a yarn. I briefly thought about plying with a commercial yarn, like a fine silk, but I spin Z on supported spindles and most commercial yarns are spun S. It would be a real challenge to get the two to play (ply) nicely together. Plus I’d still have to buy the yarn.

I definitely have my work cut out for me over these next few weeks!

PS, if anyone was wondering whatever happened to the peach gummies combo spin, I was REALLY unhappy with how the singles turned out. I was going for an “energized” single and ended up with a overtwisted mess. I have an equally overtwisted merino singles I could try plying it with, but I’m not sure I need that kind of stress in my life right now!

What are your plans for this year’s Tour de Fleece?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.