Another hobby of mine, besides gardening, is quilting. I'd spent a year or so admiring the skills of quilters in blog-land when big sister Helen gave me a roll of different fabrics and a quilting book for Christmas 2010 with the words 'there's no excuse now not to get on with it!'
I started a blog (frankly, so I could ask for help when I got stuck), and since my first project of place mats and a table runner where I learned to find my way around a sewing machine early in 2011, I've completed three full quilts, and three baby play mats.
The fourth full quilt has been in the making for twelve months - it was part of a monthly quiltalong day where a number of quilters from around the world worked on a 'mystery quilt' which was put together by quilt designer Sue Abrey.
It's been terrific fun - not least to see how all the other quilters have got on from all corners of the world, showing how they have laid the design out with their own choice of fabrics. Mine is a combination of Christmas prints, with a checkerboard backing; quilted with a holly leaf motif in a variegated metallic thread.
But I've fallen behind with the quilt - everyone else had their quilts done and dusted by Christmas, and I've still had some way to go. I have had a little leeway, though - I'm giving the quilt to my Godmother, who is not well at the moment and does feel the cold, so it's coming along with mum and me when we next go to Bedford to visit in a couple of weeks.
I had underestimated the amount of work left to complete the project, and have had to work like mad to get the binding sewn down, and even now, a day late on the challenge it still needs a label and a good wash and air, but then it'll be wrapped and ready to go.
So, week 7 challenge: done.