“10 and 6” is my Tribute to the Mad Hatter, from Alice in Wonderland.
When I started this piece, I was working around an ‘Alice in Wonderland’ theme for my latest display at the Dragoncon Art Show in Atlanta Georgia. However, unlike my other artworks, I didn’t want to do a cut and dry representation of this character. Rather I wanted a more obscure reference that only true fans might get. Therefore I choose to 10/6 as my reference.
Because I believe that we all simply ‘stand on the shoulders of giants’ and that is important to always recognize and honor those that have inspired and lifted us. The 10/6 (which is seen as a card in the hatband of the Mad Hatter) was an idea conceived and perpetuated by the artists that have helped bring Alice in Wonderland to life. By incorporating 10/6 in my painting, it was a way for me to honor both Lewis Carroll for writing the book, and all the illustrators artists before me.
What does 10/6 mean anyway?
In many of the illustrations we see of the Mad Hatter he is wearing a hat with a card in it. The card says “In this style 10/6” Back in the Victorian Era, hatters used to wear their hats as a way of displaying their wares. (This is also why you might see an image of a hatter wearing multiple hats stacked on top of each other). So when the Mad Hatters card said, “In this style 10/6” he was simple showing that it would cost 10/6, or 10 Shillings and sixpence.