About 5 years before the dementia really set in Nana was called by a company that bought an estate in her home town here in Georgia. They were told she loved old laces and wondered if she would like to come and see some they had. This Estate was quite a big one as the same family had lived in this home before the Civil War and had thrown little away. She bought a trunk full of laces that were mostly before the Civil War. She never did tell us how much it cost but she was like a kid in a candy store and we lovingly went through each piece and salvaged what we could. She used quite a bit of it in Christening gowns and I got some to use for my crazy quilting. I treasured each piece and share some with folks that also loved to use laces in crazy quilting. About 3 years ago we lost all we owned due to toxic mold in our apartment and so my stash is gone. (it sure is hard to build it up again)
After her death I tried to make something for each of her 6 siblings that would be a heirloom to them and their family. This black lace was so very delicate and I had to mend a few places and so I played with it and as I was folding it I saw it could be a shawl. So I tacked it to a piece of fabric and began to embellish it. The black beads I used as fringe were from that stash too. They are wonderful fragile glass beads. The gold beads that are close to the neck were off of a sweater that was her Mil's and the sweater was full of holes and I cut the beads off of them. She loved when I made flowers with beads and so that is why the bouquet is mainly beaded. The crystals are red because this lady loved to wear bright colors and red was one she had a lot of. Her sister now has it framed in a shadow box with a picture of Nana in it also. It will be passed on to her daughter and she says her 4 daughters are fighting over who gets it next.
It is a wonderful thing to pass on special pieces to family that will treasure it and the work you did.