Friday, 23 November 2012

Customising Creations

One of the hardest things I find about creating handmade items is deciding which colours and styles to focus on for my stores.  Because, while I would love to make each item in a rainbow of colours or make matching earrings for every necklace I create (or vice versa), it is just not practical for me to do so.  Which is why I love it when customers ask me to create something I might not have otherwise had a chance to make!
image trephina necklace black red pink green two cheeky monkeys
A pink and green variation of the Trephina necklace.
Sometimes a custom order is very simply a colour variation of a pre-existing design.  I love these kinds of custom orders because I often get to use colour combinations I might not ordinarily stock.
image chantal glass pearl earrings and bracelet set gold rhinestone rondelles bridal
A bride-to-be requested a matching bracelet to go with the Chantal earrings she purchased for her bridesmaid.
Another favourite kind of custom order is when I am asked to make a piece of jewellery to match a creation a customer has previously purchased from me.  These kinds of orders often allow me to work on an idea which was already in my head or they can force me to think outside the box a little (such as the time a customer asked me to make non-dangly earrings to match a chunky ribbon and onyx necklace).
image pride and prejudice rings mr darcy mr wickham jane austen upcycled book page
A Mr Darcy ring inspired by a Mr Wickham ring!
And while many of my creations are of a limited edition or one of a kind nature, there is always the possibility for a customer to request a bespoke item inspired by something instore or an item which has already sold.  In this way, customers can obtain a creation which suits them and their needs even better than the original piece might have, due to the extensive discussions I have with them.
image vintage dictionary page art print grand piano vintage sheet music print violin
A sheet music and violin art print inspired by the grand piano dictionary page print.
Of course, my dictionary page prints are the items most commonly requested as custom creations!  Bespoke requests can range from simple requests for specific word definitions on the dictionary page to using sheet music or other vintage papers to adding images of a customer's favourite animal, instrument, vehicle, etc.  I have even had a customer request a quote to be added to the image design!
So let me ask you, when you see an amazing handmade creation which has already sold or isn't in your required colour scheme, do you discuss a custom order with its creator?  Or do you keep looking in other stores in the hopes of finding what you want somewhere else?  I'd be interested to hear your thoughts.   :)

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