My first mention on this blog of The Milkweed Project was in January 2009. I have only mentioned it twice more since then. I am really bad with long deadlines. I always have been and I acknowledge this fact. Having a year to knit a strip of white fabric of indeterminate size was always asking for trouble.
I bought the yarn in February 2009, RYC Luxury Cotton DK, but didn't cast on until June 2009. And then it sat in a bag...... for months. I just couldn't seem to find the right stitch for what I wanted to produce.
My first efforts involved using large needles, which was very boring. Then I tried randomly looping stitches and then dropping them on the next row.
Looking at this technique closely, I liked the effect, but looking from a distance is didn't seem right. It just wasn't wispy enough to conjure up the image of milkweed seeds.
I'm afraid at this point I sort of gave up. Then once the chaos of Christmas was passed, and I was searching around for something new to tackle, I received an email from Shan, the artist creating the project. She was sending out an extension for submissions. This gave me the kick up the backside I needed, plus I now had a SHORT DEADLINE, just what my adrenal glands needed. I needed to have posted my piece by 15th January 2010, almost exactly 12 months after deciding to take part in the project.
I spent some time looking through my craft library and found the perfect stitch. It wasn't knitting at all, it was crochet. It was Broomstick Crochet!
I used a 20mm needle and 4mm crochet hook, with a starting chain of 25 stitches. I alternated rows of loops with a row of double crochet until I ran out of steam and time.
I finished off the piece and blocked it out to open up the loops a bit more and stretch the cotton and make it more even. The size of the completed piece is 5" x 38" which I feel is a reasonable size. I wish I had started it a few days earlier so I could have made a longer piece, but I was too busy working on the captivating Ishbel. It is now too late for regrets, so I will just package up my drapey fabric and send it to the US to take part in a project that has pieces from all over the world.
I'm glad I didn't let this project beat me, I think I would have really regretted not completing what I set out to do and having my work join with others to produce something extraordinary and beautiful. I can't wait to see what the finished construction looks like. I hope you watch "The Pod" where Shan will be showing some of the pieces as they are received and the project as it is put together.
Now all I have to do is find an envelope and write up a label.