This isn't my original idea, but one by Eleanor Dugan which was featured in Quilter's Newsletter magazine in December 2001. The idea is that you make a list of everything you can think of about the person the quilt is for, such as jobs, hobbies, places they have been, favourite foods, star signs etc. then look through your stash for images. It's surprising what you have, and even the writing on selvedges can be useful. Cut the images with a half inch seam allownace and then start to arrange them in groups by size. Four small square ones can make a four-patch, several long ones can make a strip, etc. Try and make the shapes into a rectangle, ading plain or geometric fabrics to fill the gaps. Some shapes can be fused on, to break up the regularity. Border, layer, quilt and bind and then add embellishments, such as badges, buttons, charms.
This card has a picture of Stuart as a young man (in a nice hand knitted jumper!), his initials ST, writing because he's a teacher, tea and coffee motifs because he'll often make a cuppa for everyone, wood and stone fabrics and paintbrush for his DIY, the child on his shoulder because he's a dad, wine because ... well, you can guess that one, plaid because he wore a kilt to his wedding, horseshoes for good luck and the eyes (next to the teapot at the bottom) because he works with visually impaired children.
I had great fun making it, and I'm sure he'll like it too.