I've been given a great assignment. I met a silly woman named Laura, and she wanted a silly hat. That's the story simplified.
A longer version would tell you about us meeting at Paradise City in Marlborough, and her telling me her sad tale of having a small head. We tried various hats on and she chose a style she liked, told me the colors she wanted, and we measured her head.
Imagine being the artist and being told, "Make me a 'volcano'* baseball cap, throw some green and purple in it and have it keep my ears warm. Other than that, it's up to you." Wow. It's so nice to be given room to be creative. It makes you want to do more, to put in the extra effort for their faith.
Now, I've already told you that she's silly. She really is. And I adore silly people. She sent me reference photos of herself in different hats. Describing them wouldn't do them justice. Suffice it to say that one of the photos was of her on a boat wearing a couple pairs of goggles, swim fins and something like a ducky pool float. But Laura is also lovely. She looks an awful lot like an old friend of mine who lives in Louisiana.
Having those photos of her really made a difference. I really had a sense of who I was making this hat for. I wish I could get this sort of thing from all the people who commission me for hats.
About a week after our first meeting she called to tell me that she found the perfect hair piece in blond and purple to be attached to her hat.
We met one more time for her to give me the hair and then I got to work. Oh, the fun I've had. I started with some sketches and in my mind I kept her practical needs rolling around in my brain while I worked. I began building her felt and trying to come up with some creative accents.
I'm looking forward to shipping it out. I know she's planning on wearing it on a trip to Canada in January. Hopefully she'll send me some pictures and I'll post them to the blog.
In the meantime, here's a picture of a Denishé *volcano hat. It's one of my best sellers. Most people pull their own hair through, but Laura doesn't have hair long enough for it, hence the hair piece.
I'll keep you posted on the progress.