For the past few months I’ve been pouring out my thoughts here about building my first commissioned work. It has been a wonderful learning experience about balancing my own capacity with efficiency, cost and the knowledge that I was also working to someone else’s sense of style and design. There are things I would do differently next time, but none of them make me feel like I have delivered anything less than my best work. I was proud to load up the car and make the delivery last Saturday morning.
One thing I should say, however, is that this person I have called a “client” for the past few months is actually a good friend.
John and I spent a few years playing together in a band in Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill. Even though we only see each other occasionally these days, I count him as one of my best friends in North Carolina. He’s a genuinely good guy, and when he contacted me about building these pieces for him I jumped at the chance not only because I wanted to build them, but because I knew it would be an excellent opportunity for learning to interpret someone else’s ideas and vision into a finished product.
When John and I started talking about design it wasn’t long until abstract terms like “modern” and “simple” began to take shape. I had just finished reading The Anarchist’s Design Book and I was in love with the staked worktable/desk design so I sent a photo of the design to John. We decided on walnut to give it a “mid-century” feel and, well, if you’ve kept up with the blog you’ve already read the rest of the story.
When we moved it into John’s office on Saturday, it looked as if it was always meant to be there.
John was happy. I was happy (and a little relieved), and after getting everything set up, John handed me a little thank you gift. That’s the other nice thing about working with a friend. They just get you.