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Distinctive Fabric - beware

WHO: Distinctive Fabric, DF

WHERE: http://www.distinctivefabric.com/

WHAT: Two separate orders of long haired faux fur (6/27 & 7/15)

WHEN: First had email communication with Distinctive Fabric on 6/27 regarding whether swatches were current, and first sign of trouble was when package was taking longer than necessary, 7/5.

1)Told that swatches are current: https://www.diigo.com/item/image/43t6z/3wo4
2)1st package tracking: https://www.diigo.com/item/image/43t6z/r7yp
3)swatch compared to fur received: https://www.diigo.com/item/image/43t6z/2mtr
4)acknowledging they made a mistake (finally): https://www.diigo.com/item/image/43t6z/pjei
5)discount offered: https://www.diigo.com/item/image/43t6z/mxgv
6)email stating refund would be immediate: https://www.diigo.com/item/image/43t6z/sbax
7)UPS delivered: https://www.diigo.com/item/image/43t6z/mi8c
8)second order returned: https://www.diigo.com/item/image/43t6z/jiye

1)I was making a bodysuit to go with a partial fursuit I bought from a fursuit maker, and I was trying to match up the gray fur used. I ordered swatches all around. And the swatch I received from Distinctive Fabric was the closest one.

2)Since I was working on a timeline that involved a con I wanted to make as little mistakes as possible, so I contacted DF and asked them, just to double check, that their swatches are current, grey in particular. They wrote me back and assured me that they were. (screenshot 1 above)

3)I contacted DF on July 5th when I had not received my package. They provided a tracking number, and that showed some of the problem. Despite paying for Priority mail it was 7 days before the status went from "electronic shipping information received" and entered the USPS system. And on top of that there were 5 more days before it was delivered. (screen shot 2 above)

4)when I opened the box the gray was MUCH MUCH MUCH lighter than the swatch they had sent me! So, apparently someone didn't bother to check it before responding back to me that they were current. (photo 3 above)

5)It took alot of back and forth through email before they started to realize what they had done wrong, admit to it, and then offer a solution. (screenshot 4 above)
I was fortunately able to find another match (thank you fursuitsupplies.com!!!!!)

6) since I had to return the grey they offered me a discount off of a future order. I planned on never ordering from them again, but I was trying to match up another bodysuit for another project and the maker of this partial recommended getting the fur from DF to match.

7)So, I placed another order with them, it was then that I discovered that the discount they were willing to offer me for all the trouble they caused was only 15% (screenshot 5 above). That is barely above the discount they offer any and all customers that happen to have a 10% code that they frequently run.

8)I received this second order, of 4 different colored long haired furs. I bought all the same 2" pile style, just different colors. When I opened it, I was horrified to see that they had sent me 2 of the colors in the right pile length, but the other 2 were a completely different length, they were 3" pile! I called them, and told them about the mistake and they sent someone to the warehouse to confirm the mistake. And after frustratingly back and forth-ing it was discovered that they really just could not get me what I had ordered, the correct fur, in time for what I needed it. So they sent another label to send this second order back. So, that is 2 orders now that they are holding on to my money, while it gets sent back and then having to wait for them to process my refund. Two separate amounts of money being held up by their mistakes.

9)Both orders have now been sent on their way back to them. I had been assured that a refund would be immediate (screenshot 6), but the first order was delivered on Monday 7/29 (screenshot 7) and still no refund has been received. (I am writing this on 8/1)
I opened a dispute on 7/31 through paypal for this, they have yet to respond.

I just want my money back as promised. And when the 2nd order gets back to them on 8/6 I want my money back immediately as promised. (screenshot 8)

This whole experience has been very frustrating as Distinctive Fabrics has made numerous mistakes, and have consistently shown that they cannot be trusted (inaccurate swatches, faulty customer service, wrong fabric, no refund).

Today (8/3) Distinctive Fabric "settled" the dispute I opened through paypal for the first order, (I had not escalated it to a claim) by refunding me. Thank goodness! Sad that "immediately" refunded really ended up being 6 days, but still very happy to have my money back. So, one bad order/returned money down, one more to go!

*****UPDATE 2*****
Just opened a dispute on paypal for the 2nd order, as they recieved the fur back on Tuesday (8/6) and have still yet to refund me, again. I find it laughable now that she even promised me "immediate returns". Not sure how long to give before upping it to a claim, we'll see.

*****Final UPDATE*****
After I upgraded the paypal dispute to a claim, they dragged it out to the last possible day they could respond before paypal would have automatically awarded my claim in my favor. I can't help but feel this was a personal attack/attempt to keep me from getting my refund as long as possible. But I digress, I have my all my money back, they have all their fur back, it has been a very frustrating, and lengthy, and expensive lesson to never EVER order from DF again.
Artist's beware has moved!
Do NOT repost your old bewares. They are being archived.


( 26 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 1st, 2013 08:06 pm (UTC)
A while ago I ordered some white Mongolian shag and found that it didn't match with some other colors (my mistake). I emailed them about a refund/return and they never got back to me.

If the mongolian shag didn't fit another suit I planned to make I would've been more active about it, however it's still disappointing.
Aug. 1st, 2013 08:25 pm (UTC)
Not sure if this is OT or not. But even though they've always been an option, I've always considered the last resort due the setup and design of the site. I bought from them once, when I really couldn't find the right colour anywhere else, but it came as a complete different shade. Since I was on a tight schedule for a plushie comission and it was a light colour I managed to colour it myself to the right shade. (not a huge difference, but enough to look "off" and not good for the character).

Haven't had any contact with their customer support, but If they write like they do in their item description I would be put even more off. I feel the "buddy buddy" tone of the site doesn't mach it being a big business.
Aug. 1st, 2013 08:37 pm (UTC)
Distinctive fabrics representatives have gone out of their way to stalk/harass me on FA and on my facebook. They are extremely nasty people if you cross them and will blackmail customers who come forward to shut up about it.

A similar thing happened to a friend of mine and I went to their facebook page and told them to get it together. 200 dollars of furs never showed up and they gave a fake tracking number and the customer ended up filing a paypal dispute. The absolute rage that was rained down upon me was baffling.

They 100 percent do. not. care. It's not just some random cutter messing up an order. It's the management.

Aug. 1st, 2013 08:38 pm (UTC)
And I absolutely have the screencaps to back that up.
Aug. 1st, 2013 08:44 pm (UTC)
Honestly, I've always been curious about this. I'd love to see the screenshots.
Aug. 1st, 2013 08:59 pm (UTC)
When I first heard she was having problems with DF I was like, it's DF, they will totally fix everything immediately. It was just some worker that messed up an order they are lagging on.

Then I was told that they were really sorry about how things had went down and they made a account on FA specifically to make a public apology.

Here is the best one. CCO of DF.


There is a lot of stuff that didn't get screencapped. DF convinced her to delete her FA journals. I just....don't put up with people taking advantage of other people and as a customer I felt entitled to speak up.

I hope she will come forward and tell her side of the story.

Aug. 1st, 2013 09:14 pm (UTC)
Aug. 1st, 2013 11:08 pm (UTC)
Wow. Dang. I had decent service from them in the past, and I can say that customers can be a huge pain (from personal experience). I was also about to go into how 15% is decent considering that they sell it pretty cheap, but...


that's pretty gross. As much as my customers drive me completely nutters and can be down right malicious sometimes, I would never go off on them like that. Ever. Terrible.
Aug. 2nd, 2013 01:24 am (UTC)
Oh gee, I hear you on bad customers. I used to work retail, so I always try really really hard to be a good customer.

I would have been entirely 100% happy if the swatch had matched current stock and so I had gotten what I wanted. (again, I had written them right before I placed the order to have them double check that the swatch I had just got would be the same as current stock, and for some reason they didn't bother to go actually check before replying it would)
And then if I had just gotten what I had ordered the second time, would have been completely happy.
Not hard to please, just wanted what I paid for. lol. :)

The only reason I was thinking 15% is measly discount is because of how much trouble they had caused me by a mistake that was 100% there fault, and a really stupid mistake at that. And at the same time I placed my order they were already running a 10% discount good for anyone that saw it on their facebook.

Not nitpicking, and I know you were on "my side", just saying, I really am not that hard to please. :)
Aug. 2nd, 2013 12:04 am (UTC)
I ordered swatches from them twice and they somehow always messed the order up. And when I said something the second time they asked me why I was complaining because they were free...um no I paid a dollar each for them.

It's been a couple years since then and I no longer have the email exchanges - but it was then I decided not to order from them :/
Aug. 2nd, 2013 11:01 am (UTC)
So they complain that they need more than a day to reply to emails but have time to make an FA account and to post back at you there and on FB. Right...
Aug. 2nd, 2013 06:47 pm (UTC)
DUDE there are some crazy people in the world.
Aug. 2nd, 2013 06:49 pm (UTC)
Very intense people. Do not use "crazy" its inappropriate and again comm rules.
Aug. 2nd, 2013 11:58 pm (UTC)
Aug. 4th, 2013 02:41 am (UTC)
"Crazy" is a derogatory term directed at mentally ill or disabled individuals, even if the people who use it don't always mean it in a rude sense (:
Aug. 4th, 2013 03:11 am (UTC)
Aug. 1st, 2013 09:50 pm (UTC)
Well, crap. I just placed an order with them because Fabric.com's given me similarly bad service. x_x
Aug. 1st, 2013 10:12 pm (UTC)
As an Aussie I can't order from DF, however I've seen numerous complaints on LJ Fursuit about them and Fabric.com over the years. I honestly believe it's because their employees don't understand how makers require specific colour/texture/length/non-crumpled furs.

Glad to see you managed to find another source. I've purchased from them before and it's always been a pleasant experience, I assume because (she?) too is a maker and knows what fursuit creators need.
Aug. 2nd, 2013 01:26 am (UTC)
I would have pimped fursuitsupplies.com more in my post if I thought I could. She is AMAZING! She not only fixed my problem with the gray, but with getting the colors and right fabric that I should have gotten from DF the second time too. She totally fixed their mistakes. She was really helpful through everything, sympathetic and everything. What an amazing business and I know I will turn to her first now.
Aug. 2nd, 2013 01:32 am (UTC)
I actually wanted to use them... They had a perfect burgundy micro-suede at a good price(hell atm its even cheaper) I had wanted to use for a sorcereress cosplay. Taking a pass on using them now definitely.
Aug. 2nd, 2013 06:44 pm (UTC)
Everyone knows that dye lots will differ- bolts of fur come in 10-20 yard rolls, and if they run out there's not much they can do. Given that they do A LOT of business, I wouldn't have expected them to check every orders dye lot.. that wouldn't be practical. You ordered a month after you got your swatch? And you expected that same roll to still be in their warehouse? If you're trying to perfectly match dye lots you're going to be shit out of luck.

I'm not trying to defend their shit cust service, but this really is common sense >.> There've been about a hundred posts on the fursuit LJ community about this exact question(Dye lots). A good rule of thumb for dye lots is "If you buy within a week of recieving your swatch and there are no delays, you will probably get material from that bolt". You can always dye it up to a darker shade with a minimal amount of leather brown or slate gray in the water, because DF almost never refunds so you're probably stuck with what you've got. You might be able to resell it on a list or auction site.

If you want a fur company who is on top of that shit, try imstuffedfur(Run by one person with 2 employees, so they're much more on top of the small stuff). They're woefully expensive by comparison, but usually she will check to make sure she cuts swatches from the same bolt as she has the most on. And if she runs out she will tell you. But them's the breaks.

Personally I've never had an issue with them(But I'm too busy to mess aroudn with swatches)- but breakspire ordered 5 yards of black and ended up with 5 yards of hot pink. Because I guess those look the same. I don't think she got a replacement or a refund, either. Because she was stuck with ALL THIS HOT PINK forever.

Edit: Or maybe she got it through fabric.com I don't know, they both have shitty service.

Edited at 2013-08-02 06:45 pm (UTC)
Aug. 2nd, 2013 08:50 pm (UTC)
It was more of a couple weeks between getting swatch and then ordering. And I know dye lots change. That is why I wrote to see if they had or if it would still be current. Given my order number for swatch I would assume it not hard to look and see if it would be the same still in stock. In either case, they told me it would be. Then it wasn't.

The second time they sent me the completely wrong fur.

I can't really be stuck with what I got. They sent me return labels and I sent it back. They have the grey fur already, have had it for awhile now. The others haven't gotten there yet. The problem now is they are not returning the money for the fabric they already have (wouldn't expect for the others yet ofcourse). They had promised me an immediate return.
Aug. 3rd, 2013 12:00 am (UTC)
If you returned the product, I hope you get a refund because my initial thought is that you probably won't :/ Not with this much bullshit hassle you've already put up with. Keep us posted on this, though.
Aug. 2nd, 2013 10:54 pm (UTC)
honestly I'm glad I've never ordered from them. All of the places I've ordered from have been wonderful :). I actually personally a big fan of Mendel's (I know, not everyone's favorite). Fabric Empire was fabulous too with my first order. I plan to go back to them for future business
Aug. 5th, 2013 07:16 pm (UTC)
Yes all of their solid color furs have gotten lighter in the past month. It has to be the silicone coating on it as all of the fur I have received has a lot more sheen causing the color to look faded or lighter. Not sure if all suppliers are going through this but as its become a pain in the butt, I may have to try someone else to get the colors the way I used to. They never supply tracking even when I pay extra for 1-2 business day shipping which I have complained about constantly.
A real shame.
Gisrel Laude Sullivan Dorio
Sep. 3rd, 2016 12:07 pm (UTC)
Oh actually I've purchased fabrics from them how many times and never did I encounter a problem. Actually they've always been very helpful and the shipment has always been fast. That why I keep ordering from them.
( 26 comments — Leave a comment )


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