Post # 1
I made a winter coat for myself a couple of years ago because I couldn’t find one I liked. A friend of mine was really impressed and he has asked me to make him one, as he’s quite short but with really long arms and finds it difficult to find clothes to fit. I really don’t mind doing it between finishing law school this summer and starting my traineeship in November, but my question is how much should I charge him for it? He’s already said he’s happy to pay for the materials, as well as some extra for me. I don’t want to rip him off because he’s a good friend, but equally it’ll take me a fair amount of time to make it, he’s getting a personally tailored coat and he earns a fairly good salary for his age.
I’ve calculated that the materials (including the pattern etc) will probably come to at least £70. I’m not sure how long it will take me to make, but my own coat took a couple of weeks of evenings and weekends while I was working full time.
Post # 3
@clumsylawyer: I would feel weird charging a friend anything beyond the materials, but that’s just me. What if you charge the materials and then tell him he can take you out to dinner at __________ or you could barter if he has some skill you could use?
Post # 4
Whatever the materials cost plus a little extra. My brothers commissioned a friend of ours to do a painting for my other brothers birthday. She said just the materials but it was really awkward. He gave her a bit more in the end, but probably not nearly enough to cover how long she spent on it.
Post # 5
I feel like if you are asked/commissioned to make something you should be able to charge a resonable amount and not feel like you should be giving it away. If you offered to do it, that would be different, in my opinion.
I would let him know what you would typically charge for it, if you were to sell it to anyone else, and let him know how much just the materials cost. That would at least open up the conversation and hopefully he would be willing to pay you a decent amount.
Post # 6
People don’t realize that custom work and comissions take TIME. Some costumers I know charge $10/hr, and that’s on the low side. I get that he’s your friend, but it all comes down to a) how much do you value your time, b) how soon does he want it, and c) are you willing to work for free?
I would charge at least $5/hr for each hour you work on it.
Post # 7
I think you should really evaluate how long you think it’ll take, and let him know the total when you give him an estimate. He may not realize that making a custom coat takes so long.
As for what you would charge, either work out an hourly rate and then multiply by how long you think it’ll take, or charge the equivalent of a similar coat’s retail price. Custom coats are EXPENSIVE so either way he’s getting a great deal.
PS good for you for working out a price beforehand rather than having a nice awkward situation down the road.
Post # 8
Thanks all for your comments. I guess I’ll have to sit down and work something out!
Post # 9
How much did you end up charging him?