Im building a number of projects decorative boxes for the holidays, and Im in a quandary. Do I make them to please me, or to please the recipients?
Youre probably thinking thats an easy answer. Of course you want the recipients to be pleased; isnt that the whole point? To that end, we endeavor to make something thats attractive, useful, pleasing and positively the best work we can do. But where do you draw the dividing line between what you like and what you have to guess they will like.
For example, a couple of the boxes Im making, although decorative, will be utility in nature. For these projects I prefer thicker stock because I like a heftier, solid feel for things like that but does everybody? Thinner stock would be just as useable, durable and attractive, and would provide the same utility. But to me, theyd feel light and somewhat insubstantial made with thinner stock. In short, they just wouldnt feel right when held in my hands. In the hands of those to whom Ive gifted these boxes, however, that feeling of heft and solidity I like so much may translate to heavy and clunky.
In the past Ive sometimes compromised. If my preference is for, say, 3/4 stock on a project to give it that heft I like, versus a more-expected 1/2, I might shave that stock down to 5/8 instead. Itll be slightly lighter than what I like, but still probably a bit heftier than what most people expect. Cant say this compromise pleases me because the results feel too light in my hands. Further, they might still feel a bit heavy and clunky to the giftee. If that happens, nobodys happy.
When requested for something specific on a project, it goes without saying that I always do what the recipient has asked for regarding size, overall dimensions, thickness and weight. But without being guided otherwise, Ive only got my instincts to go on.
In those cases, I think the best course of action is to go with what feels right to me.
Till next time,