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Not sure what to do here.

So I have a problem.

A made a suit for a guy. He was one of the most picky customers I have EVER worked with. I have had people who fussed more over tails and things (heck, I've re-done a tail three times for one guy,) but this is the first time I've had such a problem with a full suit. There were a million details to try to get right, and honestly I was sick to death of the thing by the time I finally got it finished and sent out.

So it arrives, and it seems there are some problems. The foremost of which is the zipper/velcro arrangement.

The character design has a long fluff of fur running down his spine, kind of like an extended mane. I was going to put the zipper right down the back, under a flap of that fluff, and the fluff would just sit over it, like the fly on a pair of pants, and hide it completely. But this guy insisted that he must have the zipper in front. The problem with that was that the chest has muscle padding, so I can't run it down the middle, and putting it on the side was giving me fits. A zipper has to run in a straight line, I've never found a way to get one to curve. What I ended up doing was putting an under-panel, underneath the muscles and fur, and running the zipper up that, with the chest part with fur and padding on it as a kind of flap, that velcroed down along the shoulder and side.

Now he doesn't like this. Some of the velcro pulled up, which is totally my fault, and which I said I'd be happy to fix that for him, but he wants the thing completely redone, with a zipper and snaps arrangement. I don't want to do it! I really don't! I'm fixing the hands already, because of a fitting issue that's also my fault, so I'm happy to do it, and I'm also repairing the head where one of his friends damaged the jaw (he's had this thing for just a couple of days now!)

I never wanted to look at this again, and now I get to redo the head, and the paws. I don't want to have to redo the body as well! I don't want to just tell him to take a flying leap, but I'm really not sure how to handle this. He wants it just so, and I don't feel it's my responsability to fix a problem that really is his fault for insisting on the front zipper, but I don't want to piss off somebody who was otherwise a fairly decent customer, and who has admittedly paid a great deal for this.

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( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 11th, 2006 11:44 pm (UTC)
Charge him extra for the extensive changes. Technically you did more work than you had set out to do and deserve to be paid for it.
Oct. 11th, 2006 11:51 pm (UTC)
I'd say charge him for the changes, as well, since he did not specify exactly where he wanted the zipper/velcro/etc. If he'd told you that in the first place, you wouldn't be making that change. Sure, he's paid you a good sum of money for the suit, but if he nitpicks once it's done, and about things he never mentioned wanting you to do at first, then it's pretty much on his head to pay for the extra labor.
Oct. 12th, 2006 12:21 am (UTC)
You're already fixing things that were mistakes on your end, plus damage that was most certainly not your fault. Unless you have a warranty thing going on for damages done to the suit, you've already gone above and beyond the call of duty by fixing the head. If he wanted the zipper in such a specific arrangement he should have made that clear from the get-go.

So yeah, I agree with charging him for any further changes, especially such a big one like completely redoing the closing panel and whatnot.
Oct. 12th, 2006 12:40 am (UTC)
I'd definatly charge for further changes and let him know that THIS IS IT, no more.
Oct. 12th, 2006 12:44 am (UTC)
A lot of this hole you have to admit you dug yourself. If there is a method you do not feel comfortable engaging in you have every right to say "No, I cannot do it in the front because of [insert reason here], and I only do it on the front or back for [insert reasons here]." Take it or leave it.

That's just an example however. At anytime if you are unsure of your ability you have full right to tell the person flat out you will not do something you don't think you can do correctly. Yes, it's good to be challenged, but If you decide to make a challenge for yourself then you really can only fault yourself when it doesn't work.

You should fix the things you know are your fault but you are under no obligation to "change" something for him when you already did the work correctly the first time. If he wants it changed he needs to pay for your labor.

As for the head damage I would fix the head out of just being nice but again you are under no obligation to. Infact you could demand money for it if you wanted. It's not your fault he let a careless friend brake it.

Sorry for all the trouble though.

Oct. 12th, 2006 01:04 am (UTC)
If it were me, I'd fix the head and paws (as you're saying you're doing), and offer to also fix the velcro/zipper arrangement at no cost as it's only been a few days.

As for the rest, if he didn't say he wanted a snaps arrangement from the beginning, and you've never offered to do things that way -- you're not obligated to provide. Tell him you'll repair the front panel with velcro, and if he wants extra (if you're willing to provide), he can pay for extra. Explain to him the logistics behind it if you haven't. Sometimes you just have to put your foot down and move on.
Oct. 12th, 2006 01:05 am (UTC)
Yeah, that's pretty much what I've decided to do.
Oct. 12th, 2006 01:58 am (UTC)
That's a tricky issue. I mean for one it really isn't fair for him to insist the zipper be in such an impossible place, but if he has paid a lot of money for the suit you only have two opitions: give him a refund or just grit you teeth and do the suit again. I mean if it is enough money for him to take you to small claims court you don't want it to lead to that. So I can't think of any options other than that, Bladespark.

Oct. 12th, 2006 03:08 am (UTC)
I'm sorry but I am just cracking up. I mean, not at you. Just... laughing... at him. Because I did a measly conbadge for him and it gave me the WORST grief, that I don't even want to bother ever doing conbadges for commissions again. If someone is going to be that utterly uptight and obnoxious over their character just... ugh!

I'd pull up the post I made about it, but I think you commented on it so you must recall it? I don't know... but wow. This just makes me laugh.

Oh, and I say don't fix the head. It's not your fault it's broken. That's his for letting his friends knock it around. If he wants you to fix it, he better be paying you more for it.
Oct. 12th, 2006 03:35 am (UTC)
Yeah, I remember the badge thing. I figured at the time it was just an isolated incident, but now I know better! It's how this guy is, I guess.

Oct. 12th, 2006 04:18 am (UTC)
Yeah, guess so!

Have you figured out what you're going to do about him, yet? How much did his suit cost, anyway? (I still say charge extra for repairs on damage done by him and his silly friends!)
Oct. 12th, 2006 04:22 am (UTC)
Eh... fixing the jaw would take like two minutes, except I have to wait for it to dry overnight, but it's not much real work. It's the stupid velcro thing that's driving me nuts.
Oct. 17th, 2006 06:26 pm (UTC)
I bet I know how the head got broken. Lol. Gross!
Oct. 13th, 2006 12:41 pm (UTC)
... Yeah, I thought it was that guy.
Oct. 12th, 2006 11:55 am (UTC)
Fix the velcro for free, charge him extra if he wants extensive changes to the suit. :P
Oct. 12th, 2006 03:55 pm (UTC)
I would fix the damaged velcro, the hands, and the head, as you've already mentioned those are not a big deal. I would NOT offer to fix the body-suit, and would tell him you did it a certain way based on his ideas, and typically you do not even do bodies that way. If he doesn't like it tough-- it's the way he wanted it.
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )


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