Today I was waiting for some friends for a Valentine’s lunch. We were meeting at Crave, a fabulous restaurant with an extensive menu and awesome atmosphere. I brought my little sketchbook with off-white paper, intending to do a sketch with Faber-Castill Pitt pens. As I settled into my booth, I noticed a group of “Red Hat Ladies”. I don’t know if this is a national or regional organization, but I had a friend once who was in it. They go to special outings and events, and wear red hats with purple around the middle, or red accessories for their hair. I knew right away they were having a Valentine’s lunch. I saw their balloons over their table and red hats, and knew my theme for today. I noticed waitresses dressed in black shirts, so I drew one in, her blond pony tail bouncing around. I like the decor in Crave, and noticed I had a view of the dining room that included the server’s area, banquet area, flowers, volumes of drapes and fabrics, tables, and people in booths like me. So I began sketching as fast as I could. So much to sketch, so many fun designs and shapes. I started with the serving area on the left with the waitress, the Red Hat Ladies, then worked my way left. The last thing I added was the woman seated on the far left side. One of my favorite illustrators is Hilary Knight, the illustrator of “Eloise”, a precocious little girl who lives in the Plaza Hotel in New York. His children’s illustrations have always fascinated me, and one reason is because they are done with black pen and accented with shades of pink. So today, I present “The Red Hat Ladies” ala Eloise— a black and white sketch with pink and purple accents! Seems perfect for Valentine’s Day. Enjoy!