Custom Creation Complications

Some other artisan sellers may consider my approach to taking custom orders as “too nice.” I beg to differ. I try to handle my custom orders exactly how I would want them to be handled if I were on the other end as a buyer. I do not require a deposit of any kind, and I show the customer pictures of the finished pieces before they have to commit to buy. After all, I want to make sure they will absolutely LOVE their personalized creation before having to shell out their $$$. To me, it just seems like poor business taste to force someone to buy something that wasn’t what they thought it would be, or perhaps isn’t quite what they were looking for. I’m not exactly hunting down reasons for negative feedback, to say the least.

A result of this method does leave me with some trial and error pieces. Sometimes the finished product isn’t exactly what the customer was looking for, so I chalk it up to experience, list the item in my Etsy shop for the public to decide on, and create a different version for the original customer. If I’m lucky, it won’t matter that the original customer changed his or her mind, someone else will fall in love with the piece and purchase it for his or her own. Being a custom creation, it wouldn’t have existed otherwise.

Some of the “rejected” custom creations in my shop right now:

Does this discourage me from taking custom orders? Nope. Do I answer my own questions? Yes.

I’m even not at a point where I would consider taking a deposit or a down payment yet. The majority of the custom work I do get purchased by the happy customer, and I love making that something extra special just for them. Some complications may result, but most of these will simply end up getting picked up by someone else, so I’m not too worried about it.

Have you ever ordered anything custom made? Were you happy with the results?


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11 thoughts on “Custom Creation Complications

  1. Barbara May 14, 2012 at 12:34 pm Reply

    They’re all beautiful, I can’t see you having any problem selling them. Just out of curiosity, why were they not wanted?

    • MegansBeadedDesigns May 14, 2012 at 2:04 pm Reply

      One one the person simply never purchased or got back to any of my communications, and the other simply weren’t what the person was looking for style-wise. (The bear amulet wasn’t simple enough, for example.) Reasons for rejections can vary.

  2. MaggieMays Fine Jewelry May 14, 2012 at 2:36 pm Reply

    The remarkable creativity of your design’s is outstanding. I don’t see any reason why a customer wouldn’t want or appreciate such beautiful item’s. Your right in saying that you will have not problem selling to a customer that appreciates quality and your design’s are definitely handmade quality.

    • MegansBeadedDesigns May 14, 2012 at 2:50 pm Reply

      Thanks Maggie. To be fair, it’s not always a matter of someone not appreciating something, but rather, looking for something a little different, which I am always happy to try to make for them again! :-)

      Only a couple of times have people requested custom orders, and then not gotten back to me. They either changed their mind or forgot. Such is life… lol

      • MaggieMays Fine Jewelry May 14, 2012 at 3:02 pm Reply

        You have a heart of gold! You really show your appreciation to your customer’s as a quality artisan. Your design’s are not only quality they are a true “Piece of Art.”

  3. mycraftcave May 14, 2012 at 3:43 pm Reply

    i like and agree with your business style and your stuff is beautiful.
    i’m the same with my custom orders. a lot of my stuff is personalized with names. i figure if they don’t like it when i’m done it can usually be made over. i’d rather have happy customers too.

    • MegansBeadedDesigns May 14, 2012 at 5:00 pm Reply

      Exactly! A happy customer can do a lot more for a business than a single sale can.

  4. Nichole May 14, 2012 at 5:02 pm Reply

    I never ordered custom orders, but almost all my work are custom orders. I provide sketches to control misunderstandings before beginning my work. With paintings, I’m able to make changes if needed.

    Meanwhile, your custom interpretations of the potential customers ideas are gorgeous!

    • MegansBeadedDesigns May 14, 2012 at 9:38 pm Reply

      An excellent point Nichole, give them a small taste of what to expect beforehand, that way there are no major misunderstandings afterwards that could have easily been avoided!

  5. Sartenada May 14, 2012 at 10:15 pm Reply

    The first one is awesome.

  6. salla May 15, 2012 at 9:47 am Reply

    I have done some custom work locally, and I have followed the same path – no upfront deposit needed…. with one exception. With a bracelet I was making where part of the customization she wanted was to add sterling silver findings. I didn’t have any on hand and thus would need to order them. I did request that she put a deposit in up front to cover the cost of the specific findings she wanted. She felt this was fair and had no problems with that.

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