La modiste (the hat maker)

La modiste. Pen and ink, acrylic and hand embroidery.

She was invited to the back room of La Voix du Nord where a photographer made her pose under her tilting hat. She had won first place in the annual Saint Catherine competition where girls under the age of twenty-five were encouraged to submit a hat crafted entirely from the paper’s pages.

A photo of the top three entries was published in the paper and each girl would receive a framed copy of their portrait.

“Will you come for a drink with me afterwards?” the photographer asked.

She had just turned twenty four and was in love with an accountant. She had better plans for herself than a drink with the photographer.

“The winner” is the 8th story of Project 105 — illustrated flash fiction. All 105 hand-embroidered original illustrations of Project 105 are being gifted to individuals who express an interest in art and fiction. Preference is given to first time art owners and to those who might not otherwise have access to art, fiction or both. Each art recipient is also given a free original copy of the story. To learn more about Project 105 or to sign up and become eligible to receive a Project 105 illustration visit