I've been working on a few commissions lately. I enjoy making things to order, I like how it makes me step outside the confines of what I might usually do. But, I'll often find myself getting quite nervous when I make them: will the person I'm making for like it? Is this what they had in mind when they asked for "bright & cheery"? What if my idea of a nice colour blue is different to theirs?? It's the same kind of angst I get when I'm buying a gift for someone who I don't know very well, or whose taste is different to mine. I guess it's normal when you're making something for someone who you've never met? I'm starting to sound like Woody Allen now, but you get the drift I hope. How do you all feel about taking orders for your work, and how do you go about it? I'd be really interested to hear.
Fortunately, I've been very lucky so far with this kind of work to have met some lovely people who are largely happy for me to do what I like. These two are a couple of finished made-to-orders, both for little girls. Kaya cat is heading off to live in Florida with a baby girl. Her Mum asked me to make a very feminine white cat, and to include the colours lilac, yellow and pink in her dress. I don't use a lot of lilac or yellow, but when I found this reproduction print I fell in love with it. I like that I wouldn't have found this print or put these colours together if it wasn't for this cat. I'm going to have a little bit of trouble letting go of her now.
Similarly, this little monkey is going to a little girl whose mother loves all things pink, pretty and Laura Ashley. I called her Lally, which according to my baby name book is a derivative of Laura. I hope my interpretation meets her approval.