That’s Some Top-Notch Top

Of all the yarns I’ve recommended to other knitters over the years, Mountain Colors’ Crazyfoot has hands-down been the most universally loved. It doesn’t really come as a surprise to me. This excellent sock yarn is often overlooked, but it has beautiful, rich colors and is as tough as it is pretty. The other yarns I’ve had the good fortune of using from this company are just a fabulous, so when I had the opportunity to try out their 100% Targhee Top for spinning I couldn’t wait to give it a go. This, of course, was partly because I knew this fiber would be top-notch quality with beautiful colors, but also because I’d never tried spinning Targhee Top before and you know I can’t turn down a spin with a new-to-me breed of wool.

When it arrived in my mailbox, the colors certainly lived up to the richness I’ve come to expect from Mountain Colors…

mtnclrThis colorway, called Trading Post, is wonderfully vivid in reds, purples, greeny-teals, and just a few hints of orange. My first impression of this Targhee wool was that it is very reminiscent of the airy softness of Rambouillet with the crispness of Corriedale. This makes a lot of sense since the Targhee breed is descended from Rambouillet, Corriedale, and Lincoln sheep. I decided to try to create a traditional 2-ply at a slightly heavier weight than I usually spin. Normally I spin a lightweight single that eventually becomes a 2 or 3ply fingering weight yarn, but something about these 4ounces of fiber convinced me heavier would be better. So I went for it…

mtnclr2I was shocked and incredibly pleased with how easy this fiber was to handle. As you can see, spinning a heavier weight single — which is usually a challenge for me — was as easy as pie. I quite literally could not believe how easy it was to keep this single nice and even.

When it came time to give my new yarn a bath and set the twist, I opted to include a generous glug of vinegar just to be sure that saturated red would set nicely.

alluremtncolorsAnd it did…

targhee2Oh, how it did!

targheeThis is hands-down my best attempt at an even DK/light worsted yarn and I give a lot of credit there to the wool and how easy it was to handle. The colors, obviously, are just to-die for. In fact, I’m currently searching for the perfect project for this 135-140 yards of yarn for my dear mum. She fell in love with it over the holiday, so the least I can do is knit it up into a nice little something for her. I think it’ll make a beautiful hat. I have a couple pattern ideas that are ruminating and I will probably settle on one and wind the yarn once my new swift arrives in a few days (I highlight new swift because after 10years with a really not-so-spectacular swift that I bought for $1 at a garage sale, the arrival of a new one is kind of big news in my house. But more on that later…).

targhee3The Mountain Colors Targhee Top is a fiber that I would definitely recommend for novice spinners. It has that Corriedale feel that is very easy to handle for newbies, but the Rambouillet softness makes it — I think — maybe a little more appealing in how the finished product feels (not to diss Corriedale because I love it, too — Targhee is just a little softer). If you are like me and you have some experience under your belt, but are looking to enhance some of those fiber-handling skills, obviously this fiber earns my sound endorsement for those endeavors, too. All things considered, I have to say I had high expectations for this fiber based on my past experience with Mountain Colors and those expectations were surpassed. This is a very fine fiber in those signature Mountain Colors that everyone loves. I’d say that’s some top-notch top!

7 thoughts on “That’s Some Top-Notch Top”

  1. Oh, Sarah, that is just so beautiful, and I am impressed with your spinning. If you are anything like me, you will have that where you can see the beauty all the time until you start knitting it up. Aren’t you the tiniest bit tempted to buy more to make a hat for you?
    Happy New Year!

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