Spinning Tuesdays: Stumbling Over A Targhee Cowl

Sweet Grass Wool Targhee fiber

I spun my Targhee, fat and wooly. This bump had been marinating in my stash for mumble-mumble years and the shake and spin method didn’t work, since it was a little compacted. I split it lengthwise and fluffed it horizontally from tip to tip. Let me say that while I rarely attenuate my fiber before spinning I love to open it up by lightly pulling it horizontally. While I do this, I look for any vm, or lumps and get to know the color progression of a dyed roving or top.


Targhee yarn

My gorgeous Targhee fiber became chunky two-ply. A little more than 5 ounces became 60 yards of, 3-4 wpi, 2 ply. I set the yarn with a hot soak and it plumped up in the magicall way that Targhee (and Cormo) does.  It changed almost a a whole wrap with the  plumping – it was 4-5 wpi before setting and 3-4 wpi after.


Targhee Swatch

I did a little swatching. It came in at 1.5 stitches per inch on US 17 needles. I love how the big stitches look and the gigantic cable, but I didn’t love knitting with the 17s. They felt awkward and gave my hands cramps.

And the failed Targhee cowl

I fell in pattern lust with a couple stitch patterns put together and just started knitting, a fat cable and coin cables that would double as buttonholes. It’s a cowl, what could go wrong?  And the knitting goddess said “Fail!”.

It’s too short, really too short, and maybe a little too wide. Back to the knitting drawing board and those size 17 needles.

What has gone wrong lately in your spinning or knitting?

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Jillian is the​ author of the best-selling spinning book Yarnitecture. She is the editor​ of Knittyspin and Developmental Editor for PLY and PLY Books. She kinda loves this spinning thing and wants everyone who spins to love it too, so she teaches and writes a lot. She knits, weaves, and stitches and tries to do as much of it as she can with handspun yarn. She's always cooking up all kinds of exciting and creative things combining fiber arts. She likes her mysteries British, her walks woodsy, and to spend as much time as she can laughing. Spy on her on her website jillianmoreno.com

8 thoughts on “Spinning Tuesdays: Stumbling Over A Targhee Cowl

  1. Jennifer Crowley

    I have a stitch pattern that I just can’t seem to get right. In my head it should work, on paper it should work, when I work it up… *facepalm* Doesn’t work. I think I might have to totally scrap it and just let the idea marinate for a while.

    I think it might be a combination of the stitch pattern not doing what I want it to do, and the yarn not being a good pair.

    Again, I’ll just scrap it and see what I can do with the yarn that will work. Perhaps something in colorwork?

  2. Nan Scott

    I have been knitting the easy-peasyist cardigan. I have never frogged as much in my whole knitting life as I have with this project. I have put it down with the two sleeves being four rows out. Is the first the correct one? Or the second?

    It is now in the corner out of sight, but not out of mind.

    I really want to finish it but can I face more frogging??

  3. Tami

    Tried knitting the Eleanor de Toledo stockings on US 00 needles with lace yarn. Followed the suggestion of doing a double yo in the cuff. I must have done it wrong, but because of the previous rows couldn’t tink had to frog. Thought I could pick up the stitches above that. Nope. Tiny little stitches become tinier when frogged. So had to frog the whole thing. Thought I would rewind the ball and start over. In the rewinding it has become a nightmare of tangles on either end. I need to drag my husband the detangler in for help.

    So while that was sitting in time out, I decided to start a pair of socks on larger needles (US1) and bigger yarn (fingering), the Rivendell pattern. Thought I would get a jump on movie wear for The Hobbit. My calves widen before the pattern expects because if I do all 60 rows before starting my heel, its not going to fit. I came up with the idea how to fix this problem, but that means I’m going to be frogging another sock!! I’m going to cast on with a US2 and knit the first 10 rows with those and then switch to the US1 to finish the rest of the sock.

    I really should have put it aside when I finished row 35 and figured this all out, but optimistically kept going until by row 50 reality slapped me upside the head.

    Here’s hoping this solves the big calf problem. Thankfully the spinning is going really really well! Its helped when I’ve had to put these projects in time out to solve their issues.

  4. Dai

    just yesterday as i was finishing an Annis shawl I realized I has been plodding along with 2 whole pattern repeats less than the called for 29!

  5. brandi

    I’m working a color affection shawl….should be a no brainer knit each row. I just took out 12 rows because I had somehow purled 15 stitches in the middle of a striping row.

  6. Seanna Lea

    I haven’t really had any knitting problems to speak of, but I am missing a ball of yarn for a pair of socks which is driving me batty and am working off of a bad print out of one of my Ravelry patterns. The printer overlay the text and charts so it has this shadow thing going. Makes me vaguely nauseous to even look at!

  7. Amber

    I started a pair of socks requested by a friend. Made a whole one before figuring out it was WAY too small. Started a second pair instead of completely ripping it back. Made second pair to different pattern, and decided the pattern was ugly. Started with third pattern and got far enough to discover I hate the yarn because it pools like billy-o no matter what I do.

    Oh, and some baby trousers from yarn my mum-in-law chose for me. I don’t love the yarn but I wanted to do something nice and make them because she chose it. In trying to rush finishing, I seamed them wrongly and then, when undoing it, cut a wrong bit and unravelled a bunch of stitches instead of the seaming yarn. Fixing it took longer than knitting the trousers in the first place! I am hoping my next project will be both something I love knitting AND works out well.

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