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This archived content is from Mary Wilkins’ sewing and quilting message board “Sew What’s New,” which was retired in August 2007. It is being provided by “Sew What’s Up,” which serves as the new home for many members of “Sew What’s New.”
From: MaryW
Date: 10-28-2003, 12:09 PM (1 of 4)
Just posting for first time! I have been suppling pattern information to a friend that has started a retail business. She comes to me with what she wants, such as a customer wants a set of queen sheets of a queen size duvet. She will supply the fabric and tells me how she wants it to look. I have to figure out the dimensions, and cutting and sewing instruction. Now she will use these items marketing tools. She takes pictures of them and puts it in her catalogue. I have just been giving her this information. What should I be charging her for all this information?
owner/editor of Sew Whats New
User: MaryW
Member since: 06-23-2005
Total posts: 2542
From: MaryW
Date: 10-28-2003, 12:11 PM (2 of 4)
The above post was moved by me from a different forum. This gal is doing some super design work and needs to have some good advice on how to charge the company that has her working for them.

If anyone has suggestions, please let's hear them.
owner/editor of Sew Whats New
User: MaryW
Member since: 06-23-2005
Total posts: 2542
From: Linda in Colorado
Date: 10-28-2003, 12:47 PM (3 of 4)
Are you actually doing the sewing for the sample items? If you are, definitely charge her for them! After all, she is using your time and expertise.

Also charge her for any instructions you write out and copyright them yourself, then charge her for licensing your instructions. (The licensing would act sort of like those people who make Disney items. Disney owns the original copyright, but they license the design to certain companies to be used for products.)

You could also work out some other arrangement between the two of you that is beneficial to both.

The two of you really should have some kind of contract in place, stating what you will do, what she will do, what each of you will not or cannot do and so forth.
User: Linda in Colorado
Member since: 03-27-2000
Total posts: 102
From: yeepers
Date: 10-28-2003, 05:06 PM (4 of 4)
This is an interesting thread and I'd been lurking around wondering if anyone else had any input.

It's so hard to put your finger on what things actually cost. Especially intangibles like your skills etc.

It sounds to me like you are doing a multitude of things: create a prototype, produce the pattern, provide instructions. These are all things that would cost an arm and a leg if you were to go to a contract sewing company!!

I got a quote one time from a company to produce a product that I was interested in selling. As I did not have a pattern they would have to take it from design to finished product. For them to create the prototype alone was going to cost in the range of $1500-$2500 (man hours, design, materials, etc.) Now, that may be in the high range considering that this is a large company and they have set pricing and it's the business they do everyday. Still, don't sell yourself short.

If you're producing the design you should copyright and license it. If you're creating the prototype make sure you're getting the proper remuneration for it.

I know that sometimes it's hard to charge a friend but remember that business is business. Not to be a sour puss but it's really easy to get taken advantage of and you have to look out for yourself. You have to figure what you think your time and expertise are worth. Designing and prototype making are worth more to me than just following a pattern or doing alterations.

I would definitely agree with Linda in saying you should put everything down on paper that way there's no misunderstandings. It's what you would do if you were doing business with a stranger.....even more importantly if you're doing business with someone you know!

Best of luck to you :smile:
Two Turtles
User: yeepers
Member since: 03-29-2002
Total posts: 52
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