Tuesday, 12 May 2009

The Snag...

... about making something to give to a special friend, is that other people, on viewing said gift, occasionally come out with the dreaded saying, 'Oh, do you think she would make one for me? I'll pay, of course!'

Dilemma. The time taken to create any handcrafted item is unlikely to be recompensed by any monetary offering. A labour of love, on the other hand, requires no payment.

After spending the best part of two days on the project of which I speak, you may understand, I was not over the moon to receive such a request. But this is where things become tricky. I know the person who asked is a kind, caring, compassionate being, who has had her share of difficulties thrown at her by life. If anybody deserves a little kindness, she does. So I will willingly make her request come true, but without asking for payment; instead, I offer to teach her how to produce similar objects herself, as her interest appears to have been caught by my handiwork.

I wonder how my Blogland buddies would deal with a similar situation?

Obviously, I don't have time for a longer post today - I have to get back to the production line!

15 comments:

lime said...

it is a sticky situation. i like the idea of showing her, maybe even doing it together so you get the joy of sharing time and skills together.

Sniffles and Smiles said...

You are wonderfully kind! Bravo to you! I love your heart! ~Janine XO

Rosaria Williams said...

Yes, it is tricky, indeed. You are kind to volunteer to teach her.

Jewels said...

I understand completely! I'm a scrapbooker. Now I have friends handing me stacks of photos saying "Can you make this into an album for me? I'll pay of course!" It takes me several hours to complete one page. Nevermind the expense of the materials. If I were to charge a stranger for a completed album, it would be somewhere around $500. Of course, nobody wants to pay that, it's ridiculous! So now, I simply invite them over, with their photo's, to a scrapping party where I guide them and teach them. In the end, they are proud of their work, I have drank copious amounts of wine, and lots of fun was had by all. A good solution I think!

Carolina said...

I've trained myself in saying 'no'. Really. It makes life so much easier.
Although, I'm still in training. The occasional 'yes' escapes me sometimes.
Your solution is a good one too. And much nicer. I would also like to attend one of Jewels' scrapbooking events. But not for the scrapbooking. Cheers ;-)

Patty said...

If I have the time, and if I enjoy doing the project, I have told some, just buy the yarn I will need and I will make it for you. BUT once I start the project there will be NO changes made. If I am making it to give to a friend, that's different. Buying the yarn and making the item is all part of the gift I am giving them. About the only hobby I do anymore is crocheting.

Teaching the person sounds like a wonderful idea. Like you said, they would make it and have the satisfaction of knowing THEY did it themselves.

Anvilcloud said...

I think you've hit on a great solution. You might want to add that this is a one time labour of love on your part -- just to preclude other requests from her or even others.

Hilary said...

I think your solution is ideal. And very kind. :)

Garnetrose said...

I can agree with this post. I make quilts and I love doing it for family and friends. You would be amazed at the number of people who ask me to make them one without realizing they are handmade and I cannot whip one up in a few days. I do the quilts because I love doing them for relaxation. I enjoy creating them but for me it is a slow process. If I know one of my friends really wants one and I can do them in my own time, it is no problem for me.

I never tell them no I will not do one. I just tell them it has to be within my time limit as I have other quilts I am making. I often have two or three going. Right now I have on I am quilting and another I am piecing. One is for my nephew and his wife and the other may be for my daughter. I would love to be able to give them all something they can keep to remember me. Just because.........

Rinkly Rimes said...

Not being 'crafty' I never have this problem! No-one ever wants anything I've made!

Jinksy said...

I see Carolina and Rinkly Rimes have the easy solution! Jewels, Garnetrose - welcome to my club and Patty, you probably are a member too, as even if you're provided with materials, you still have to give your time free. Though the pleasure of holding something you've made yourself is really payment of a kind...

jay said...

Oh, yes, I know this problem too. In particular I have a friend who makes little craft items of such uniqueness and charm that people often ask for one. And she often agrees to make them one against her better judgement. She then gets caught in the 'must do' trap, where something that was fun and a challenge, and a labour of love (as you say), becomes merely a chore.

I don't really know what the answer is.

Woman in a Window said...

um, I'm afraid I'd promise with good intentions and then never get to it. I think your way is much better.

A Woman Of No Importance said...

I know that what we are paid for our hand-made art can never fully be recompensed, la Jinks - When I work out how much it costs me to make, say a stained-glass mirror, people would faint at the cost, quite literally!

All very well as pressies, I always think, to people who will appreciate your art and your effort, but as for a cottage industry, 'you'll ruin your (lovely, cheeky) eyesight'! xox

Susan English Mason said...

Not much of that happening to me. The only thing I can do is scrapbooking/photography type projects and the opportunity to do something with that has not presented itself to me often enough. Your way of handling it was perfect though. I'd rather learn how to do something and spend time with you, than to just have you do it for me.