Author Topic: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)  (Read 187508 times)

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Amara

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But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« on: June 24, 2013, 09:57:34 AM »
LadyJaneinMD had a great idea in the Beggars & Moochers thread of starting one specifically for those who craft and are constantly begged for work to be done cheaply or even for free. Happily, here it is.

I write. Not surprisingly, I get asked (more accurately, it's assumed) to write for free because "after all, you like to write so it's not like it's work for you." Closely related to that is the "you like to read so you can edit my book (note: for "royalties")," followed by "you can review my book on Amazon!" Ugh. I also love the "I have this great idea for a book! I'll tell it to you, you write it, and we'll make lots of money!"

How about you?


*edited to add one more example*
« Last Edit: June 24, 2013, 10:01:28 AM by Amara »

*inviteseller

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2013, 11:15:11 AM »
Oh, my friends step daughter's niece's dog groomers vet is having a baby..can you make that scalloped baby blanket by Friday?  You must have the 8 balls of the special yarn in just the right color I want.  What?  You can't make a blanket in 2 days?  What????  It will cost me the yarn plus a fee for your time?  But it is your hobby!!  You love doing these things!  How hard can it be?

Conversation slightly (and only slightly) exaggerated but it happens so often that it almost has made me quit telling people I knit. 

My sister is in public relations..oh, the people who just want to 'pick her brain' (i.e. get her to write brochures, proof their promo materials, give them ideas how to run an event).  Of course the brain pickers don't want to pay her going rate because, ya know, they're friends and that is what friends do. 

VorFemme

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2013, 11:18:58 AM »
I sew.  I can also knit, embroider (machine and hand), quilt, counted cross stitch, and simple reupholstering of chairs & benches.  Also some home repair things like replace the screens in window screens or build replacement frames and install the screen in them, replace light switches, and so forth.....I also LIKE to upgrade & refurbish working laptops and computers and troubleshoot non-working ones for myself or close family.

I have had a SIL more or less demand a counted cross stitch Bible cover for her birthday (did the counted cross stitch on flat Aida cloth and then made the cover to fit her Bible).  It's been over twenty-two years and I have yet to get a thank you or a birthday present from her (or them).  Apparently since I was making one for my own mother, it shouldn't be that much trouble to make another one, different design & size for her....

I mentioned having made an outfit for myself at work (odd size) when another coworker who was pretty much the same size and found ready-to-wear didn't fit thought that she could bring the fabric to me and I'd make her one, too.  Ah - I sew for myself & close family who will make dinner while I sew and clean house (depending on how long the project takes) - if I sew for others, I have enough experience that I think I'm worth MORE than minimum wage.  I did offer to teach her for free one weekend....she didn't want to drive 30 miles but did seem to realize that she was asking for a lot more work that she'd first thought.

I've worked on computers for my mother, sister, daughter, husband, son, and an older woman who had bought the computer from me & was having trouble with it (long story - we are in a social group together, as well - so more than mere acquaintance, less than BFF).  Turned out it needed to be moved to another room to reach her DSL outlet and she was afraid that she'd never get all the wires hooked up correctly.  I've replaced hard drives, added extra RAM, added a Bluetooth radio card, and replaced a monitor screen in a laptop.   I've also done a lot of malware removal, reinstalling of the factory image, and learned which of several free shareware programs will get a laptop "working" reasonably well again without doing a complete factory image recovery (no way to back up the personal information or the install disks for some additional programs had been lost). 

But I don't do any of it for a living - I do it for FUN!
Let sleeping dragons be.......morning breath......need I say more?

cwm

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2013, 11:27:45 AM »
I made my niece a blanket and several hats when she was born. (December baby, it was COLD out.) I actually made her one hat while my sister was in labor, and the hospital was nice enough to let sis use that hat on her for her first day. I've made fingerless wrist warmers for people, and scarves and such, but I haven't for about a year or so.

I still have people ask me if I can make things for them. Um, no. I can barely crochet or knit a single row in a scarf without paying for it for several days, my wrists are that bad. I mean, if they want to come to my job and do it for me since I won't be able to use a computer, that's fine, but it's amazing how nobody is ever willing to actually do that.

Sis has had people ask her for drawings that they can use online for various things, and while she does love drawing, she doesn't think she's very good at it and it takes her a long time for her to determine that something is good enough to be shared. If she responded to all those requests of artwork, she'd never have any time to actually do anything else. It's slowed since she left that online community and had a child, but there are still people who ask her to draw something for her with ridiculous stipulations.

The only time I feel okay asking for something from someone is if they offer a gift of a craft and then ask what I want. I had a friend offer me a drawing for my birthday because she was in tough financial straits but still wanted to get me something. She's also offered to do any perpetual makeup on any ball jointed dolls I get, and offer her services at making me a ring if I ever wanted it. I've taken her up on the art so far, but I'd never imagine going to her and demanding things just because she likes to do them.

BarensMom

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2013, 11:29:33 AM »
A friend asked me to "help" her alter a jumper dress.  I sew well enough to make simple repairs, so thinking it was just a bit of taking in the side seams, I agreed.  I ended up having to take the stupid thing apart and basting it back together 4 times before friend proclaimed herself satisfied.  I did the final sewing 3/8" out from the last basting line, returned it to her, only to have her say, "It's too tight."

The dress had originally come from a standing kiosk near the Russian River for $25, so I told her to go buy herself another one in the correct size.

I don't sew for friends anymore.

LadyClaire

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2013, 11:34:24 AM »
I get a lot of people who think because they're a friend/relative/co-worker that means they should get a discount. My SIL asked me how much one of my reading dragons would be for "a sister-in-law". Answer: same that it costs everyone else. Especially since this SIL is DH's half sister whom I have met exactly once in the 15+ years I've known my husband.

Then there are the "can you make this, for cheaper?" people who bring me a picture from a magazine or website of a piece of jewelry they want, but don't want to pay $$$ for. Instead, they want me to make it and pay me $ for it. First, I do not replicate another person's work. I have a limited amount of time to sit and work on jewelry, since I work full time and have a husband who occasionally wants attention and such. I wouldn't sit and make a knock-off piece that the person isn't wanting to pay me much for when I can sit and make an original design that I can sell for a lot more.

Then you have the "Ooh, can you teach me how to do that??" people, who want to come over and learn how to make metalsmithed jewelry while using my tools and supplies and torch without offering me a dime for it. There's a reason why so many jewelry making classes require you to purchase the supplies as part of the class, and charge a bit more to cover the use of their tools, which are usually not the super high quality ones because, well, people who are still learning tend to screw up and possibly break/damage tools. I replaced my beginner tools over the years and I'm not handing someone my $60 pliers and letting them have at it. Not to mention handing a torch with a big flame to someone who has never handled one before, inside my house where they could possibly set fire to themselves, me, or my home.

Thipu1

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2013, 11:54:29 AM »
Several decades ago I was interested in Bargello and was pretty good at it. 

Aunt X decided that recovering her dining room chairs would be a good family project.  She chose a fairly simple basket weave pattern to be done in three shades of tan and three shades of green.

Because I was the one who knew what was needed, I would buy the canvas and the yarn and be paid back when the seats were installed.   I would teach Mom and Aunt X how to do the pattern.  Each of us would do two seats. 

You can already guess where this is going.

I was a college student swatting for exams but, since this was a hobby  for me and I was SO GOOD at it, I wound up making all six seats in my spare time whatever that was supposed to be.   

The seats were never installed because Aunt X considered the upholsterer's fee too high.  Of course, I never got paid for the canvas, the yarn or my time because this was for family. 


LazyDaisy

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2013, 12:10:58 PM »
Why is basic sewing such a novelty to some people? I have basic skills like buttons and hems, and I can follow a Simplicity pattern. People act like I can spin gold when they find out. I know so many people who throw away or donate clothing when a button comes off or a hem unravels. One time I was up until midnight hemming a groom's pants the night before his wedding because he forgot to get it tailored (not a tux thank goodness -- just a nice off-the-rack suit that was too long because he's so short and stout). The bad part was that I had just flown in to town for the wedding, so I first had to find a store that sold those little mending kits for a needle and thread (only time I was happy to find a Walmart). Good thing the motel had an iron and a pair of extremely dull scissors. I wasn't even a member of the family or wedding party -- just a guest who was meeting the groom for the first time. What an introduction. "Give me your pants"  >:D
"A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools." Douglas Adams

Shoo

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2013, 12:14:56 PM »
Why is basic sewing such a novelty to some people? I have basic skills like buttons and hems, and I can follow a Simplicity pattern. People act like I can spin gold when they find out. I know so many people who throw away or donate clothing when a button comes off or a hem unravels. One time I was up until midnight hemming a groom's pants the night before his wedding because he forgot to get it tailored (not a tux thank goodness -- just a nice off-the-rack suit that was too long because he's so short and stout). The bad part was that I had just flown in to town for the wedding, so I first had to find a store that sold those little mending kits for a needle and thread (only time I was happy to find a Walmart). Good thing the motel had an iron and a pair of extremely dull scissors. I wasn't even a member of the family or wedding party -- just a guest who was meeting the groom for the first time. What an introduction. "Give me your pants"  >:D

I know!  I sew quite well, and am teaching my daughter to sew as well.  When people learn I have a sewing machine, they look at me like I'm a wizard or something!

TootsNYC

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2013, 12:17:23 PM »
I too am sort of teaching my daughter, and as I do so, I realize that there are a TON of little fiddly "secrets to success" involved in learning just the machine.

It's not that hard--but it's also something that I took a *class* to learn. And few people have that option. So it seems very overwhelming from the outside.

Even as you are learning it--there's a lot going on!

siamesecat2965

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2013, 12:27:36 PM »
I can't sew, aside from putting a button back on, sewing up a seam, or in the case of not fancy pants, a simple hem. I could learn to hem pants if I wanted to, but I don't have either the time or patience. So I either let them sit forever or pay someon to do them for me!

I have friends who sew, very well, but it would never occur to me to ask them to do anything for me, and they'd never take any $$ if I offered. My mom also sews and while I have asked her to help me out on a couple of things, its nothing major.

I do needlepoint, although its been a while since I've really done anything major. One year, while unemployed for a number of month, I bought and started Christmas stocking kits for both of my parents. One was identical to the one my mom made me, for her, and the other slghtly different, for my dad. It took me from Jan-the following Dec to finish them, and I was quite proud of my efforts.  I had a friend see them and she wanted ME to make her one. Um no. first of all, the kits, while not super expensive, were about $50 each. let's not mention the hours i put in on them either. I declined saying now that I was working I dind't have any time.

rose red

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2013, 12:41:54 PM »
This isn't a craft, but I think fits here.  My family has a friend who is handy around the house.  We ask him to come whenever we need something fixed.  One time, another of his friends ask him in an annoyed tone "Why do you always drop everything when they call?  You always take forever when I need something!"  His answer?  "They pay me."

RebeccainGA

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #12 on: June 24, 2013, 12:46:47 PM »
I forgot one of my pet peeves that actually put me off my hobby for a number of years. When I was working in call centers, supporting web sites (so 90% of my day was 'let's reset your password! let's clear the temporary files!') i started teaching myself origami. It was easy, fun, silent, and something I could do with my hands while I was doing boring work. I actually have gotten quite good, and love making complex multi-part forms (and have a basket of them on my desk at work, my only decor). 



So when a friend asked me to make her some flowers for her desk, I has no problem doing so - it was fun. Then another friend asked me, and I did that batch too. Then strangers from around the floor started asking for them. Then strangers from other floors. I finally had some random person from another building come up to me in the cafeteria and demand that I make her a couple dozen for a party she was having. Mind you, I had exactly ONE person offer to pay me - he wanted me to make him a dozen red tissue paper roses for his girlfriend, as she was allergic to real flowers and he didn't want to just get her cheap plastic flowers. That request I jumped on, and really only charged him for the materials (it was such a sweet story, and a sweet person asking). The lady I'd never laid eyes on demanding a dozen metallic gold (think $$$ paper) roses and two dozen silver metallic roses for a party? Not so much.

I put the origami paper up, and started making quilled designs in paper boxes, shredding my notepaper. No one asked for those, since they weren't pretty, just something to keep my hands busy. I just started making flowers and such again in the last month (made a gorgeous big gold star for a coworker who had a great professional day and a lousy personal one coincide). Luckily, I've only given a few of them out, and no one asks for them - but then, I have enough of a polite spine now that even if they did, I would know how to say no, politely.

cwm

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2013, 01:11:15 PM »
Why is basic sewing such a novelty to some people? I have basic skills like buttons and hems, and I can follow a Simplicity pattern. People act like I can spin gold when they find out. I know so many people who throw away or donate clothing when a button comes off or a hem unravels. One time I was up until midnight hemming a groom's pants the night before his wedding because he forgot to get it tailored (not a tux thank goodness -- just a nice off-the-rack suit that was too long because he's so short and stout). The bad part was that I had just flown in to town for the wedding, so I first had to find a store that sold those little mending kits for a needle and thread (only time I was happy to find a Walmart). Good thing the motel had an iron and a pair of extremely dull scissors. I wasn't even a member of the family or wedding party -- just a guest who was meeting the groom for the first time. What an introduction. "Give me your pants"  >:D

I know!  I sew quite well, and am teaching my daughter to sew as well.  When people learn I have a sewing machine, they look at me like I'm a wizard or something!

I can sew freehand and use a sewing machine (when it's not throwing a tantrum) but patterns will be the death of me. I don't get them, I can't look at anything and put it together how it's supposed to go. Everything is lumpy and weird and not quite right. To date I've managed to make one skirt (poorly, had to fix a lot of the holes by hand because the stinking machine didn't want to let me hold the stitch straight) and some pillows on the machine, but my grandma's mind is boggled when I pull out some measuring tape, measure the wood flute I carry with me to Ren Faires, and sew a drawstring bag perfectly fitted to it without a pattern. It's not hard, really. Two pieces of fabric, seam allowance, make a pocket out of it, and then fold the top over to make room for the string. I've made plenty more pouches to add onto Ren Faire costumes to carry things such as cell phones, wallets, keys, and such out of sight, but it's absolutely simple. Much past that and I'm lost.

Shoo

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Re: But ... But ... It's Not Like It's Work! (Craft Freebies)
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2013, 01:14:13 PM »
My specialty is "deconstruction."  I can take something apart, make a pattern out of the pieces, and then make a new garment.  It's handy when you have that favorite whatever that you could never find again, but it's wearing out.  Just take it apart and then make a new one!