So, it doesn't seem this is going to work. Which is unfortunate, because I think Charlie's work is wonderful, I like to show it off, I think hand made gifts are the best kind to give, and I think it's nice to let others share the joy I find in his work. But sending him (only) a gushing note along the lines of 'We love them. You are a great artist. Tell the -the redhead- we love them.' isn't going to work for me.
I suppose this is a lesson that other people in similar situations are already aware of. It's a new lesson for me.