The year 1890 was a turning point for Auguste Renoir. Regular purchases of his work by his dealer had brought him financial security. During this happy period, he turned to French eighteenth-century painting by Watteau and Fragonard. He admired the supple brushwork that draws and colours in a single stroke, moulding shape and space simultaneously. Renoir created a sort of iridescent impasto lit up by gleaming whites and layers of glaze. The half-length paintings of young girls in hats, which he turned out for his dealer, appealed to a wide public. He sometimes ordered hats to be specially made for his models. But whether the girls were modern or sham, Renoir created wonderful posies of women and flowers.