My sister-in-law commissioned me to do this 8" x 11" art quilt of her daughter, Annie. She gave me a tiny photo, about 2" x 3" to work from. I scanned the photo, played with the color in photoshop, adjusting the lights and darks and adding a sepia tone, then output it on Avery printable cotton.
I knew it needed some soft lace at the edges, but didn't have anything on hand that was quite right. I love lace, but the wrong one can be either tacky or garish, and cheapen a piece. The right one can be magic. So, I paid a visit to M&J Trim after work to see what they might have. I hadn't been in the store in a few years--I remembered that it was wonderful, but had forgotten just how wonderful. I nearly cried when I saw the incredible trims and laces in there, one more beautiful than the next. I bought 4 or 5 and took them home to try out. I also got little rosettes for the corners. Possibly schmaltzy, but still--so sweet.
I was a little afraid of the actual quilting. I am not a super skillful quilter, and don't have a high-tech machine. So, I pretty much left the face alone and accentuated the dress and curtains with stitch. I added chalk pastels and watercolor pencils to enhance some of the details and set it with fixative.
So why am I MADD about Annie? Well, she was killed by a drunk driver in 1993, just after her 12th birthday. She was on her way to a small birthday celebration with a couple of good friends when the drunk driver blew through a red light. My brother and sister-in-law worked to get the laws changed in Maryland to get stiffer punishment for drunk drivers. Not much has changed. The driver only served a few months in jail, and Annie's remaining family is sentenced to a lifetime of sadness and loss.