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Finishing Carpenter
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got a call from a "designer" to do some work in her home. I went to the place, she wanted some crown (21') on one wall, a fireplace mantle, new architraves over three windows in the kitchen, and some casing/architraves over some passage ways. Also about 50' of baseboard.

she didn't know what a cope is. Nor what a reveal is. Very confused about mantles, cant figure out why the top is wider than the bottom (cause it has to sleeve over the tile!!!!)

I went out to the mantle shop twice, put in her order. (she's about 24 hrs returning calls)

confirming the mantle on the weekend, she tells me that its not what she wants, and yada yada yada.... crap.
I sent back, I withdraw from this project! I am not a personal shopper.

she comes back, almost begging me to do at least the crown. I can't! I mean, 21'? I'd have to charge at least $350 even though its a two hr job - 2 outside corners, two inside.
but the biggest thing, is my gut is warning (screaming) at me, "run away"

so that's what I'm doing.

funny my friends in Las Vegas said to avoid "designers" man they are right.

k, I'm done bitchin now! hockey game is on



Laurie.
 

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I certainly agree with you, wouldnt be out shopping for her. If you don't need the work get away for sure. But, if I needed it I would just have to put in a little time with her to try to explain things in a way she could understand (basicly teaching her about her job really) time consuming yes, but if it lead to more work then perhaps it's worth it. I also have to work with designers sometimes so I know exactly what you mean.
 

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Funny, I'm starting a trim job, mostly crown,base,cassing replacement on Thursday for a designer.

I ended up telling him the proper sizes as far as proportion goes. He simply said "ok"

Sometimes you need to politely let them know that " I'm the trained carpenter " so listen up!
 

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Some designers think they are artists with and unlimited checkbook (if it is not their money) and think they know more than they do and really do not have any authority.

If it was an architect, you are talking to someone that had the determination and dedication to finish school and not just go the local printer and order one of the "designer" templates for the card. That is a different animal.

Neither are very good with returning calls and providing any direction or requests needed to get a job done.
 

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Dude,
Tell her how much you need to do the job and if she accepts do it!
Designers can be a great source of work, you have to learn how to work with people designers subs and clients.
Get paid for your shopping (I thought that was what designers do?)
Her money spends just as well as anybody else's
 

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I agree with Mrmac though about your gut instints, they are rarely wrong.

When your gut says run, don't look back. The couple of times I ignored that, I paid ! :censored:

Had a designer on a job once who kept changing things back and forth. Told him " no problem " I'm charging by the hour, change all you like. It kinda stopped happening. Go figure.
 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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After a while your gut feelings become tuned in. After you find them right a few times you begin to trust them. If your gut says run....do it.
 

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I've yet to meet a designer who wasn't just a personal shopper. They have no construction knowledge, little design knowledge, little knowledge of useability issues... etc...

They usually start to feel inadequate and will try to sabatoge your relationship with the customer in order to validate their existance. Often they will try to validate their reason for being by trying to 'save' the customer money by advising the customer on contractor issues in how to find the lowest bidder and then turn around and help the customer buy a $600 vanity light or a $40.00 cabinet knob.
 

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I've had relatively good experiences working with designers. OP sounds more like the HO is claiming to be a designer. There are good and bad in all professions including our own. I guess I've been lucky in that all the designers I've worked with have had formal training and have been in business for a while.
 

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My favorite is the one who had the guys do the exterior like a Tudor, with all vertical stiles. After they got finished, she said "That's awesome. Now let's see what it looks like with angled stiles." :w00t:
It took an hour to explain that the job was priced to do it once! And quoted a price to do it the second way, and handed her another price to go back to original.

She really and truly believed we would just keep remodeling until she decided which style she liked! :whistling And at the original price!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:w00t:

BTW. She stills sends referrals and gets quotes from me and I still do jobs for her.
 
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