By mid-May, 140 completed signatures had been returned. The design was finalised and the top put together over the following couple of weeks. It was then mailed to Lilian Hedley in Chester-le-Street who marked the quilting patterns and returned it in double-quick time. One day later it was loaded onto the frame. I managed some quilting on most days, and several hours on quite a few - no hardship as Lilian's design is lovely and a joy to quilt. Nonetheless, by mid-August it was clear that, barring a sustained visit from the quilting fairy, it would not be completed in time for the exhibition in September. The fairy (in the form of my good friend and dedicated hand quilter Mary Jones) did materialise for a while in August. Mary was able to give me 4 or 5 afternoon when we had our own quilting bee and progress picked up considerably. Inevitably September arrived and the work was still not done, so the decision was made to hang the quilt as a "work in progress". It came off the frame on Monday 2nd Sept. followed by a day's machine-stitching in the ditch around the centre logo applique, and careful packaging.
The good news is, the quilt was delivered to St Anthony's Hall on Thursday 5th Sept, just in time for the opening of the exhibition. Even better news is that the final sum raised £1385.00, so thank you to everyone who supported us with generous donations.
And the story doesn't end there. As well as the 140 squares on the quilt, an additional 80 were sold but not returned. If those sponsors can be persuaded to return their finished squares and we can sell some more in the next few months, we can make another quilt. So, if you are one of those 80, please get out your needle, find your square and get stitching! If you mislaid the square, let me know and I'll send you another one - no excuses please!! If you haven't bought one yet, please get in touch and I'll be more that happy to include you. I have loads of calico left. If you are coming to the Seminar in York, I'll have some packs for you to buy there.