Thanks to the magic of mass-produced products, our perception of the value of individual items has forever been altered. For example, back in the day, to have furniture with a bit of design or flourish would cost a heck of a lot, because someone was doing all of that work by hand.
The same went for any type of formal clothing. The cloth had to be purchased and cut to fit your exact size. If you were a dude strolling around '20's New York whacking beggars with your cane, with a different suit each day to do it in, you were obviously making some serious coin.
Nowadays, you can head to some men's outlet off the highway and get an entire formal wardrobe for a few hundred bucks (along with the price of your car and insurance) and still have some money for lunch afterwards. And we're so far removed from the manufacturing process that makes this sort of convenience possible, we've lost sight of how much time and energy goes into making an item of clothing by hand.
So when people go online and find something cute on Etsy, or inquire about the pricing of a custom item, they're usually shocked by how much it costs. What most people do when they find they can't afford something is thank the individual for their time and politely tell the seller it's out of their price range.
That's what this guy should've done when he didn't like the quoted price of a crocheted blanket he asked someone to make for him. I mean, the freelancing life isn't exactly easy, as anyone who's tried it themselves can tell you. Instead of politely declining, he lashed out at the poor fiber artist. Unfortunately, the Twitter account @forexposure_txt — which posts conversations of customers who expect artists to work for free — caught sight of it.
The account posted a full text exchange Instagram user and crocheter Krafty.Katt had uploaded to Reddit after a particularly nasty encounter with a prospective client who balked at what she was charging for her handiwork.
First, we should note that she's clearly no amateur. A quick perusal of her Instagram account shows she's pretty darn good at what she does, but apparently that didn't matter to this guy, who thought he could not only treat the fiber artist like dirt, but threaten to ruin her entire business just because he didn't think her prices were realistic.
Right out the gate, the guy's upset that the crocheter didn't respond to their inquiry right away, which I think most people could agree is an unrealistic expectation of an independent artist you're reaching out to on Instagram. It isn't like you're calling customer service for The Gap or something, where you might expect rapid response times.
Aside from that, the tone of the prospective buyer isn't very pleasant even before they get to discussing what it would cost to make what he's requesting: a queen-sized blanket, hand-crocheted out of natural-fiber yarn, which costs much more than the "acrylic s--t" the buyer loathes so much.
With their choice of words, you can tell they're not exactly the classiest individual.
But, once they get to talking about price, the tone gets ruder, which we didn't think possible. We've all experienced sticker shock before, but I think most of us would stop short of cursing out the seller for being out of their price range.
The guy just couldn't believe that someone would charge that much for a blanket, but the fact is, the crotcheter in question was probably offering less than minimum wage for their work. A blanket of this size would likely take several days, and that's if they're not working on other projects.
So yes, $400 does sound like a lot for a blanket, but this one is being made by hand, and, like the guy said, he thought her work was "amazing" before he learned how much it would cost him.
Rather than walk away, he called the crafter "insane" and continued making demands.
The crocheter wouldn't budge, however. Then he started threatening to destroy her "business," but, as it turns out, crocheting is just this seller's hobby — so she could care less about the probably empty threats from this cheapskate.
Once he found out making blankets wasn't her full-time trade, he suggested she should just do it for the fun. However, after seeing how unpleasant this guy was, she doubled the price instead.
People couldn't believe the nerve of the guy and started sharing their favorite ridiculous quotes of his.
Fellow artists nodded in agreement and recognition of the struggle to get people to see the value of their hard work and creativity.
It isn't just crafters who experience this kind of sticker shock. Even textile artists like @bdragon74 can sometimes underestimate the cost of a commissioned piece of art and feel that bit of uncomfortable surprise when the thing they want turns out to be almost prohibitively expensive.
I'm not saying you need to always agree to the price, just don't fly off the handle when it's a value that you don't think is up to par with your expectations, you know?
There are also some other horrible deals the Twitter account has exposed, like this guy who thought $25 was sufficient to basically own an artist's work forever.
A costumer on the thread shared an email so out there they felt the need to preface it with "this is a real email" in case readers thought it was a bit of creative writing.
It's pretty funny when somebody thinks they're doing you a favor by asking you to commit several hours of your time and energy to a project for no pay. Exposure doesn't pay the rent!